Cowboys at Lions Injury Update: Detroit QB Matt Stafford Still Sidelined

Mike Fisher

FRISCO - The Dallas Cowboys have bumped into a few injury breaks along the way to their 5-4 record, with standouts like Davante Adams, Drew Brees and Adam Thieln being unavailable for their respective teams against Dallas. And now comes a similar opportunity, as Detroit QB Matthew Stafford didn't practice on Thursday ahead of Sunday's Dallas-at-Detroit meeting.

Dallas, like all teams, have their own issues. The Cowboys believe they'll get healthier along the offensive line as the week goes on and they believe they have the depth needed if starting safety Jeff Heath is unavailable.

Health was listed as "limited'' in Thursday's workout, meaning young vet Darian Thompson could get more playing time or even the start on Sunday. Thompson, a former Giants first-teamer, has made a start in place of Heath before and in last week's loss to Minnesota subbed in at safety as Heath was dealing with a shoulder problem that seems to be lingering.

I asked coach Jason Garrett about the concern level of Heath's availability and he noted that Heath actually has problems with both shoulders. And yes, it's a concern, though he was listed as "limited'' for Thursday.

Meanwhile, Dallas is hoping for advancement in the work level of its offensive line. Zack Martin and Tyron Smith (the latter listed as "full'') both participated more on Thursday than they did the day before. But of all the headliners who move the needle in this one, Stafford and his back issues rank the highest. His absence would guarantee nothing for Dallas, of course; those aforementioned stars (Green Bay's Adams, New Orleans' Brees and Minnesota's Thielen) all watched from the sideline as their teams beat Dallas without them. But inarguably, a chance for the Cowboys to oppose QB Jeff Driskel in place of Stafford marks another opportunity.