Cowboys Covid Outbreak Update: Players and coaches OUT

Cowboys Covid Outbreak Update

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The 7-4 Dallas Cowboys face the 5-6 New Orleans Saints on Thursday at the Mercedes Benz Superdome in New Orleans, Louisiana in the Cowboys' second Thursday game in as many weeks.

It's already a challenging week of practice for coaches and players with the Thursday-Thursday turnaround, but to make matters worse, the Cowboys are currently dealing with a number of COVID-19 issues within the building that has disrupted the schedule and personnel availability.

Dallas already knew it would be without the services of starting right tackle Terence Steele as coach Mike McCarthy announced Sunday morning Steele had tested positive for COVID-19. But the Cowboys will also be without at least three more coaches, as assistant offensive line coach Jeff Blasko, offensive assistant Scott Tolzien, and strength and conditioning coach Harold Nash all entered COVID-19 protocol over the weekend. Strength and conditioning assistants Kendall Smith and Cedric Smith already entered protocol over the weekend.

Offensive line coach Joe Philbin tested positive to COVID-19 before the Thanksgiving game, and will still be out Thursday due to protocol.

Veteran OL La'el Collins is expected to play for Steele, while Cowboys offensive quality control coach Chase Haslett, tight ends coach Lunda Wells, and offensive consultant Ben McAdoo should help out on the coaching side.

On Sunday meetings were held virtually, and the in-person walkthrough was limited to 75 minutes. Monday will be much of the same, with three hours of virtual meetings followed by a walkthrough practice.

Tuesday's practice and meeting schedule will be dictated by test results as all players and coaches are undergoing COVID-19 tests on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, regardless of vaccination status.

The Cowboys hope to see wideout Amari Cooper back on the field on Thursday, as he missed the last two games due to COVID-19 protocol. Cooper is scheduled to be back at The Star on Monday to have his conditioning evaluated for Thursday's game.

The Dallas lead in the NFC East has shrunk to just two games as the Cowboys have lost three of their last four. But after New Orleans, Dallas will see three division games in a row, the Washington Football Team at FedEx Field, the New York Giants at MetLife Stadium, then Washington back at AT&T Stadium.

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