Felix Jones' banged-up shoulder is drawing a lot less attention than all the other injuries on the Cowboys offense right now, but it could prove to be a big one come Monday.
After all the testimonials to his courage, we expect Tony Romo to play. There's a good chance that he's going to be throwing the ball to Jesse Holley and Kevin Ogletree and there's a tremendous chance that the Redskins are going to respond to that shortage at receiver by blitzing Romo and the shaky offensive line like crazy.
That means the Cowboys are going to need to establish the run and they will need to keep driving the ball down the Redskins' throat to keep possession and give the defense enough rest to keep the Washington offense under wraps. Jones' injury just got a little bit bigger, didn't it?
Knowing that Jones isn't 100 percent means that the Cowboys are going to need to spread the wealth around in the running game. That's where DeMarco Murray comes in. We keep hearing that the Cowboys coaches are pleased with his progress and that they think he can play a big role on the team this season, which should make this the week for Murray to make them look wise for praising him.
Murray should get a healthy dose of carries in the running game, he should get a chance to take advantage of Redskins aggressiveness on screens and, if all that isn't enough, he'll also get a shot to return kickoffs now that Bryan McCann has been sent packing. That's a lot of ways for a player to make an impact in a game and the Cowboys will likely need all of them if they are going to wind up with the win on Monday night.
The rookie got off to a slow start thanks to an injury in training camp, but the wraps need to come off now. The Cowboys are running short on weapons on offense, so they can't just let one sit unused on the sideline because they aren't sure he's quite ready for a full dose of action at this level.
Murray may sink, but there's a pretty good chance that the Cowboys would lose if they didn't give him a chance to play on Monday. So you might as well go down swinging, especially when there's a chance Murray makes the difference against the Redskins.