The Dallas Cowboys anticipate being near full-strength when they travel to MetLife Stadium to take on the New York Giants. There were no major surprises from the Cowboys ahead of this important division match as the team aims to wrap up the NFC East in the coming games.
Running backs Ezekiel Elliott and Tony Pollard both remain on the injury report. Elliott was a full participant in practice this week as he deals with a lingering knee injury and is expected to start Sunday.
Pollard, who suffered a plantar fascia injury on a Week 13 58-yard rumble, was limited in practice this week. He will continue to be a game-time decision this week.
During his Wednesday media conference, Head Coach Mike McCarthy did not rule Pollard out against the Giants. Pollard was ruled out last week, the first time in his three-year career he has not suited up. Third-string RB Corey Clement handled Pollard’s snaps last week and gained 44 yards on 13 rushes.
The Cowboys also used practice-squad RB JaQuan Hardy in the Week 14 victory over Washington. The rookie got his first NFL carry for three yards. The team has not said whether Hardy will be active against the Giants.
Also on the injury report is defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence who missed significant time early in the season after breaking a bone in his foot during practice. Lawrence was limited on Wednesday, but the move could be more out of an abundance of caution than an injury that would limit Lawrence’s participation on Sunday.
Cowboys tackle Tyron Smith will miss Sunday’s game with an ankle injury. Smith has been dealing with a high-ankle sprain and limped off the field during the Cowboys victory over Washington last week. Terence Steele is likely to get the start in place of Smith.
La’el Collins will likely start at right tackle after being informed that he will not be suspended for an altercation during last Sunday’s victory.
Collins was ejected from the game after throwing a punch at Washington defensive end William Bradley-King. The incident happened after Bradley-King legally shoved QB Dak Prescott out of bounds, then fell and rolled onto his legs.
Elliott was also involved in the fight but was not penalized for his role. The NFL has yet to announce fines for the altercation, but Collins could face between $10,000 and $50,000 in fines.
The Giants will be without a significant number of players on Sunday as they struggle to keep any hope of postseason play alive. At 4-9, the Giants will need to win out the season and get help from other teams but have yet to be eliminated. A loss to the Cowboys will all but seal the season for New York.
The Giants announced on Friday that quarterback Daniel Jones did not clear medical and will not be available on Sunday for the third week. Jones suffered a neck injury on the second play of a Week 12 game against division-rival Philadelphia.
Mike Glennon is anticipated to get the start with Jake Fromm at backup. The second-year QB has yet to throw a pass in an NFL game.