FRISCO — The Dallas Cowboys’ “short-term IR” for linebacker Sean Lee isn’t going to be so “short-term” at all.
The Cowboys veteran will miss six more weeks,” Cowboys COO Stephen Jones tells me, “following his surgery for a sports hernia.
Lee was already on injured reserve and was expected to miss at least three weeks ... but maybe just a maximum of that depending on his recovery process. But obviously that process did not go well enough.
Lee sustained the injury during the team’s conditioning phase of training camp here inside The Star in Frisco. It is an unfortunate continuation of injury issues for Lee, who last year experienced a rebirth in this department as Lee played all 16 games for the first time in his NFL career.
This offseason, Lee signed a one-year, $4.5 million contract to return for his 11th season with the plan to have him back up Leighton Vander Esch and others. But now Vander Esch is also on IR due to a broken collarbone and surgery that will sideline him for at least six weeks.
The Cowboys will use Joe Thomas as the starter next to Jaylon Smith on Sunday in Week 2 against the visiting Atlanta Falcons in a noon start at AT&T Stadium pitting a pair of NFC teams with 0-1 records.
As a form of additional roster help, the Cowboys have signed rookie linebacker Rashard Smith off of the Chicago Bears practice squad. They also believe youngsters like Luke Gifford and Francis Bernard may be able to contribute at some point..