Great news followed the Cowboys back to Oxnard after a promising preseason debut in Los Angeles, as it was reported that three key defensive players have passed their physicals and are now able to return to practice.
According to David Helman of DallasCowboys.com, defensive tackle Maliek Collins, defensive end Benson Mayowa, and linebacker Damien Wilson will finally be able to participate in team practices.
Looks like Maliek Collins, Benson Mayowa & Damien Wilson are going to come off PUP/NFI today.
— David Helman (@HelmanDC) August 15, 2016
The Physically Unable to Perform list is for players who suffer from football-related injuries, unlike the Non-Football Injury list, used for players who are unable to practice due to conditions not related to football.
Collins, the Cowboys third-round pick in the 2016 NFL Draft, suffered a broken right foot during the first week of OTA’s which required surgery. Another victim to off season surgery was newly-signed Mayowa, who underwent a minor knee scope in June.
Head coach Jason Garrett expected Mayowa to return towards the start of training camp, while rookie Collins’ return seems to be slightly ahead of schedule.
“I think we have created competitive situations on our defensive line,” Garrett said. “A couple of these guys have been injured over the course of OTAs and have not been available to us. We are confident those guys will be back.”
They’re back. And at a great time for the Cowboys, who desperately need the additions of Mayowa and Collins to bolster their relatively weak pass rush.
Wilson, expected to immediately challenge for playing time, was put on the NFI list due to an unfortunate right eye injury resulting from a paintball accident.
3 Cowboys players have passed their physical and are now ready to return to practice: DT Maliek Collins, DE Benson Mayoa, LB Damien Wilson.
— Brandon George (@DMN_George) August 15, 2016
The Cowboys defensive unit suddenly improved dramatically as they prepare to host the New York Giants on September 11.