- According to NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport and Tom Pelissero, the Cowboys plan to give both QBs Cooper Rush and Garrett Gilbert reps in practice to decide which one will start against the Steelers. Rapoport notes his sense is Dallas is leaning toward Gilbert.
- Per the Athletic’s Jon Machota, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said they turned down offers for OLB Aldon Smith because they think he can be a long-term part of the team: “It’s really been a positive how he’s evolved. … I like his focus. I like his attitude. I like his attitude about the future. I’m not interested in doing anything with Aldon.”
- Cowboys’ HC Mike McCarthy is not even considering taking over the play-calling duties from OC Kellen Moore: “Absolutely not. That’s a non-topic.” (Todd Archer)
- McCarthy also spoke about the failures of the team due to the loss of QB Dak Prescott: “It starts with Dak. Any time a team loses its starting quarterback, especially the way Dak was playing with a ton of production, but it’s a combination of the other injured. When you lose a number of veterans at one position it’s an added stress.” (Ed Werder)
- Cowboys’ CB Chidobe Awuzie “was not quite ready” to be activated from injured reserve, according to McCarthy. Awuzie has missed the past six games, but McCarthy didn’t rule out the idea that he could possibly return on Sunday against the Steelers. (Michael Gehlken)
- McCarthy vocalized his ideas about new DT Eli Ankou that the team acquired in trade: “I think the biggest thing when you watch him on tape is he can set an anchor. I think he’ll really fit our style of run defense, and I think his first opportunity is going to be when we get on the field Thursday.” (Calvin Watkins)
- When asked about moving G Zack Martin to tackle, McCarthy wasn’t a fan of the idea: “I think it’s fantasy football nonsense. The offensive lines that play the best, line up and play the same position next to each other over and over and over again.” (Machota)
- McCarthy continued to mention how the team could improve as they roll with the punches following injuries and things not working out: “We need to develop some higher standards, just as far as our performance and play style. Get some consistency there to achieve ultimately what we’re trying to get done every week, that’s to win football games.” (Machota)
- According to NJ.com’s Mike Kaye, Eagles WR Travis Fulgham signed a two-year deal when he was promoted from the practice squad. He’ll be a restricted free agent in 2022.
The Giants played well enough to beat the Buccaneers on Monday night, with another tough defensive performance and good games by a number of other players on offense. But two costly interceptions by QB Daniel Jones helped doom their chances, and that’s becoming a trend just a year and a half into Jones’ career. He has turned the ball over in 20 of 21 career games. While Giants HC Joe Judge still expressed confidence in Jones as the team’s franchise quarterback, he acknowledged the turnovers have to stop.
“I told Daniel on both times the play happened, tonight I just told him to be patient with it, stay committed with it, we’re going to need you down the stretch, we need you to make plays, and obviously on that final drive he made a lot of big plays for us. . . . We all have to hold ourselves accountable, the man next to us accountable. But Daniel’s our quarterback, clearly put,” Judge said via Pro Football Talk.
- After catching a touchdown to give the Giants a chance to tie the game, WR Golden Tate screamed into the camera to throw him the ball more. His wife also complained about Tate’s lack of role with the team on social media but Judge says Tate has been a professional: “This guy comes to work every day with a good attitude. We have a lot of fun working with him and this guy’s been productive for us. I thought it was a heck of a catch down the stretch, a tough catch, definitely a high degree of difficulty.” (Ryan Dunleavy)
- Judge said the team took more calls on players, like TE Evan Engram, than it made at the trade deadline but they “want to keep building with this team.” (Jordan Raanan)