The Dallas Cowboys lost a key defensive player and their premier edge rusher when DeMarcus Lawrence suffered a foot injury during practice on Wednesday. An X-ray and MRI revealed a broken foot, and Lawrence will miss six to eight weeks until he heals.
The Cowboys’ defense didn’t generate any sacks in Week 1 against Tom Brady and the Tampa Bay Bucs. Over the years, the blueprint against Brady is fairly simple: pressure. The Cowboys were unable to cause any pressure due to their ineffective pass rush.
Lawrence had a decent game in the loss against Tampa Bay, despite having no sacks. He tallied six tackles, pressured Brady twice, and forced a fumble.
Heading into Week 2 against Justin Herbert and the Los Angeles Chargers, the Cowboys will miss their two best edge rushers with Lawrence on the IL and Randy Gregory currently unavailable due to COVID-19 health and safety protocols.
If Gregory isn’t ready in time, backups Dorance Armstrong and Tarell Basham are the next two men up on the defensive depth chart. Armstrong and Bashmam combined for only 10 sacks in their careers. In comparison, Lawrence recorded 7.5 sacks last season with the Cowboys. During the 2017 season, a nearly-unstoppable Lawrence notched 14.5 sacks.
The Chargers are -3.5 favorites over the Cowboys at SoFi Stadium in Los Angeles. The Cowboys are +3500 odds to win Super Bowl 56, according to the Westgate SuperBook in Las Vegas. The Cowboys at 0-1 currently have a win total set at 8.5 o/u.