Cowboys lose Blake Jarwin and Leighton Vander Esch to serious injuries in Week 1 loss to Rams

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The Dallas Cowboys lost more than their first game of the 2020 season on Sunday night. Amid a 20-17 loss to the Los Angeles Rams, the NFC East favorites saw two different starters – tight end Blake Jarwin and center linebacker Leighton Vander Esch – come out early with injury, and it doesn’t look like either will be back anytime soon.

Vander Esch was the first to come out with a collarbone problem, and the Cowboys have confirmed the former All-Pro suffered a broken collarbone. The linebacker, who did not return after leaving halfway through the second quarter of Sunday’s loss, will require surgery for the injury, and although ESPN’s Todd Archer reports an operation will not put him at risk. ‘gap for the remainder of 2020, it remains to be seen how several weeks it might miss.

Jarwin, on the other hand, was reportedly finished for a year after suffering from what is feared to be a torn ACL on a non-contact game. The Cowboys plan to have Jason Witten’s successor undergo an MRI to confirm the diagnosis, but all signs point to Dallas losing their new tight No.1 end for the remainder of the season.

Vander Esch, of course, has a notable history of injury. He insisted in the run-up to the 2020 season that he was “no longer worried” about multiple bouts with neck injuries, but is now set to miss an extended period for the second time in two. years. A nerve-related neck issue sidelined him for seven games in 2019, and Sunday night’s injury forced longtime reserve Joe Thomas – who was already replacing Sean Lee, who is on the injured reserve – to first-shift functions.

At TE, the Cowboys might be forced to seek reinforcements outside of the organization, especially given the role Jarwin was to play as one of Dak Prescott’s primary passing targets in the middle. In the meantime, No.2 Dalton Schultz will likely be online for additional reps.

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