The Dallas Cowboys lost big to the San Diego Chargers in the team’s first NFL preseason game of the 2014 NFL season. However, while the 27-7 score looked bad, the fact is that Dallas lost without a large number of their star players. According to ESPN on Thursday, there were four major offensive names and a whole host of defensive players who didn’t play at all in the preseason opener.
It was clear all week that starting quarterback Tony Romo wouldn’t play in the Dallas Cowboys’ preseason opener against the San Diego Chargers. Joining him on the sidelines were the Cowboys’ starting running back DeMarco Murray, his immediate backup Lance Dunbar, starting tight end Jason Witten and star wide receiver Dez Bryant. With none of those players playing in this game, it gave Brandon Weeden, Joseph Randle, Ryan Williams, Cole Beasley and James Hanna more of a chance to show that they deserve a prominent spot on the team this season.
However, the big depletions came on the defensive side of the ball. Dallas lost two of their biggest stars on defense in free agency as DeMarcus Ware and Jason Hatcher both left the team and then Sean Lee fell to a season ending injury in practice. That means the defensive stars need all the action they can get to prepare to improve this Dallas’ defensive unit from one of the worst of all time to a competent group.
Missing the preseason loss to the San Diego Chargers were players including defensive end George Selvie, defensive tackles Terrell McClain and Ben Bass, linebackers Rolando McClain and Will Smith, safety Matt Johnson and cornerback Morris Claiborne. Thanks to these missing players, the Dallas Cowboys really didn’t stand much of a chance against a San Diego Chargers team that played its starters at least at the start of the game and outmanned Dallas throughout.