Notes: Micah Parsons Pushes Through; Dak Update – DallasCowboys.com

  • September 27, 2022

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – Channeling Michael Jordan, Micah Parsons made clear over the weekend that a cold wouldn’t keep him out of Monday’s road game against the New York Giants.
Parsons had tweeted a GIF of Jordan playing the famous “Flu Game” in the 1998 NBA Finals. His message?
“I’m here to play,” he said. “I don’t want to be held back. I want to play. I live to play the game. I don’t really have too many things that get me up to this amount of excitement, this energy, the thrill I get from playing football.”
Monday night, the Cowboys All-Pro linebacker looked like himself despite missing practice during the week. Parsons was credited with only one tackle and two quarterback hits, but his pass rush pressure helped pave the way for the defense’s five sacks in a 23-16 victory at MetLife Stadium.
“I’m good enough to play my game and people can’t tell the difference,” Parsons said. “I think me at 60 (percent) is better than most people’s 100. I don’t care where I’m at (percentage wise), man. I just want to play.”
-Rob Phillips (9/26/22)
Dallas Cowboys Notebook #DALvsNYG | Week 3
Rush For 3
Filling in again for injured starter Dak Prescott (thumb), quarterback Cooper Rush won his third career start on Monday night. The six-year veteran improved to 3-0 in three NFL starts and joined some exclusive company, too.
Rush is now the third quarterback in Cowboys history to win the first three starts of his career, along with Roger Staubach (1969-70) and Jason Garrett (1993-98).
Monday, Rush completed 21 of 31 passes for 215 yards and a touchdown pass to CeeDee Lamb to cap off an 11-play, 89-yard drive in the fourth quarter.
“(Right guard) Zack (Martin) in the huddle said we’re going 90 (yards) and everyone kind of locked in and we did,” Rush said. “Guys made plays all over the field, running the ball tonight — unbelievable. I don’t know our numbers, but I’m sure it was good.”
-Rob Phillips (9/26/22)
Diggs’ Pick
Trevon Diggs doesn’t let interceptions slip through his fingers often.
The Cowboys All-Pro cornerback couldn’t come up with an early interception — and likely pick-six — against Giants quarterback Daniel Jones on Monday night. But Diggs responded in crunch time, sealing the Cowboys’ win by intercepting Jones just before the ball hit the MetLife field.
“I just had to have a short memory because I was down a little bit about it because I usually make those plays,” Diggs said. “I knew it was going to come back, so when it came back, I had to make sure I made it.”
Three games into his third NFL season, Diggs now has 15 career interceptions, tied for the second-most interceptions through the first 31 games of a career in league history. Former Cowboys great Everson Walls had 21 picks through 31 games.
-Rob Phillips (9/26/22)
Gallup Close
Despite full practice last week, wide receiver Michael Gallup did not make his return from offseason knee surgery Monday night against the Giants.
Gallup was inactive for Week 3, but Cowboys chief operating officer Stephen Jones said it was a “really close” decision.
“What we don’t want to do is rush him out there and not have him,” Jones said on Cowboys Pregame Live. “I know Michael’s not far off. The fact he didn’t go tonight, I’m sure it’s right around the corner.”
-Rob Phillips (9/26/22)
Stitches Out
Dak Prescott continues to make progress from Sept. 12 thumb surgery.
Cowboys chief operating officer Stephen Jones confirmed that Prescott had his stitches removed. The next point of emphasis for Prescott will be gaining flexibility in his thumb to grip the football “and seeing how fast that can come,” Jones said.
There’s no firm timetable for Prescott’s return, though the Cowboys did not place him on short-term injured reserve in part because they believe it’s possible he could return within the four-week timeframe that’s required for a player on IR. Monday marked two weeks since the procedure to repair the fracture in his right thumb.
-Rob Phillips (9/26/22)
Parsons Pushes Through
Channeling Michael Jordan, Micah Parsons made clear over the weekend that a cold wouldn’t keep him out of Monday’s road game against the New York Giants.
Parsons had tweeted a GIF of Jordan playing the famous “Flu Game” in the 1998 NBA Finals. His message?
“I’m here to play,” he said. “I don’t want to be held back. I want to play. I live to play the game. I don’t really have too many things that get me up to this amount of excitement, this energy, the thrill I get from playing football.”
Monday night, the Cowboys All-Pro linebacker looked like himself despite missing practice during the week. Parsons was credited with only one tackle and two quarterback hits, but his pass rush pressure helped pave the way for the defense’s five sacks in a 23-16 victory at MetLife Stadium.
“I’m good enough to play my game and people can’t tell the difference,” Parsons said. “I think me at 60 (percent) is better than most people’s 100. I don’t care where I’m at (percentage wise), man. I just want to play.”
-Rob Phillips (9/26/22)
Rush Focused
Obviously, Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones wants the team to keep winning games with backup quarterback Cooper Rush until Dak Prescott returns from his thumb injury. In Jones’ mind, if that success were to lead to a little public debate on who should start, so be it.
But that topic from Thursday is far from Rush’s mind as he prepares for his second straight start Monday night against the Giants.
“I definitely don’t dream as big as Jerry,” Rush said with a smile. “I just want to keep winning. That’s the goal. That’s the plan. As long as I’m in there that’s my job. Rely on those guys on defense and our offensive line and receivers and play within the system and trust them and get the job done.”
Head coach Mike McCarthy said Friday there’s “no quarterback controversy” in Dallas going forward. As expected, Prescott is the starter when healthy.
Rush said he and Prescott had a “good little laugh” over the reaction to Jones’ comments.
“I think he just wants to win games and that’s what we all want to do,” Rush said.
-Rob Phillips (9/23/22)
Bohanna on Injury Report
The Cowboys injury report for Friday was mostly unchanged from a day prior, with expected and pre-explained absences from Dak Prescott (thumb), Dalton Schultz (knee), Connor McGovern (ankle), Jayron Kearse (knee) and Micah Parsons (illness), but there was the addition of defensive lineman Quinton Bohanna – listed as limited with a neck injury.
The severity of the issue is yet unknown, but there can be some optimism gleaned from the fact he was simply limited as opposed to being labeled DNP (Did Not Participate) ahead of a critical early-season NFC East matchup with the Giants. Bohanna is a player who’s appeared to be on the verge of a making a Year 2 jump for Dan Quinn’s defensive line, and will be key in helping to contain Saquon Barkley on Monday.
Bohanna has drawn praise throughout training camp, the preseason and now the early part of the regular season from coaching staff and players alike – a big-bodied nose tackle who eats up space and double teams that allows his DL compatriots to play more freely against less troublesome matchups. He’s started in both of the first two contests of 2022.
-Patrik Walker (9/23/22)
Lamb Ready For Gallup Return
As a team, the Cowboys would be more than elated to see the return of wide receiver Michael Gallup to the fold on Monday night against the New York Giants – a sentiment echoed loudly by the proclamation from head coach Mike McCarthy that he hopes his former 1,000-yard receiver can make his 2022 debut in Week 3; and don’t discount just how thrilled CeeDee Lamb is as well.
“We’ve incorporated him in a bunch more competitive [practice] periods,” said Lamb on Friday. “It’s good to see him out there competing again. He’s been wanting to be back out there. … Just having him back in the offense, it feels right. It feels normal and I’m happy for him.
“… [He brings] excitement. MG is a great teammate. He’s going to give you a lot of passion – very consistent and very trustworthy on any down and distance that we need him to show up, he’s been there. … The energy is building in the room and I’m excited for what’s to come.”
Gallup’s reappearance on the game day roster would inherently disallow the opposing defense to key in heavily on Lamb or an improved Noah Brown, and help Cooper Rush stabilize a passing attack that is still working through some question marks.
-Patrik Walker (9/23/22)
Noah’s Milestone
In his 55th NFL game, wide receiver Noah Brown scored his first career touchdown last Sunday against Cincinnati. Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott, who also was Brown’s teammate at Ohio State, delivered the ball to him on the sideline after his 9-yard TD catch in the first quarter.
“Definitely appreciate that.”
It was a special moment for Brown, who is widely respected by the coaching staff and his teammates for the various roles he’s played since joining the Cowboys as a seventh-round draft pick in 2017.
With fellow veteran receivers Michael Gallup (knee) and James Washington (foot) sidelined at the start of the season, Brown earned his spot in the starting lineup and taken full advantage. His 91 receiving yards against the Bengals was also a career high.
“I came in the league a little bit raw and had to find my way onto the field, and blocking and special teams was a way for me to do that,” Brown said. “I think I established that in having pride in everything that
I do and now I get more opportunities. I get pride in getting open, take pride in catching the ball and continue to do what I do.”
-Rob Phillips (9/21/22)
Tyler Smith’s Progress
Tyler Smith continues to impress not just on the field, but at the microphone as well. After a pair of impressive starts to begin the season, Smith has maintained his humble approach in every portion of his craft.
“It’s just year one,” Smith said. “There is a lot of ball ahead of me. Every week is a new opportunity to get better, a new challenge awaits us every week. We’re going against different guys and different philosophies. But the game stays the same.”
Smith has handled the transition back to his natural tackle spot nicely after spending the offseason at guard. According to him the key in making that switch back was just to keep it simple.
“When they asked me to go out there, I accepted it,” Smith said. “I had the same standard for myself at any position on the offensive line. So, just going out there and playing football for sure.”
-Layten Praytor (9/21/22)
Safety First
Very quickly, Donovan Wilson has made a name for himself early this season. The fourth-year safety has become tackling machine and a versatile piece in the secondary with Jayron Kearse (knee sprain) currently sidelined. But it’s been his knack for delivering big hits and versatility that has stuck out.
“You never know what situation you’re going to get put in,” Wilson said. “So, I try to keep myself ready and available for whichever role coach needs me to play.”
“I just try to take the angles,” Wilson said of delivering big hits. “And if a big hit presents itself, I’m going to take the hit, but I just try to create good angles and play off of it.”
-Layten Praytor (9/21/22)
Turpin’s Time?
KaVontae Turpin was this close to his first career regular-season punt return touchdown in the Dallas Cowboys’ 20-17 win over the Cincinnati Bengals last Sunday.
Turpin, the rookie wide receiver/returner who sealed a roster spot with punt and kickoff return touchdowns in a preseason game against the L.A. Chargers, helped flip field position in the Cowboys’ favor last Sunday with two punt returns for 34 yards, including a 14-yard return late in the fourth quarter that set up the offense’s winning field goal drive.
But it was Turpin’s first return – a 20-yarder just before halftime – that almost went to the house.
Turpin saw a crease and turned upfield, but Bengals safety Michael Thomas slowed him down at the Cowboys’ 43-yard line just enough to prevent him from bouncing outside for a larger gain.
“He made me miss a step. That’s why I really didn’t score,” Turpin said. “He had my left foot. That’s just a good play by him.”
Turpin watched the play back when he got home Sunday night. It’s one that got away. But he’s confident there will be more chances.
“One play at a time. That’s the way we’re looking at it,” he said. “Last week we almost got a chance, so now we’re going back to see what the Giants are going to do with their punt team, their kickoff (team).
One game at a time. Just trying to stay patient.
“That’s one of my goals for this season is like every time I touch the football it’s a big play waiting to happen.”
-Rob Phillips (9/21/22)
WR Michael Gallup could return to game action as early as Monday against the Giants, and CeeDee Lamb is excited for the boost Gallup will give the offense.
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