The Dallas Cowboys lost to the Carolina Panthers on Thanksgiving and the team lost more than just the game, as quarterback Tony Romo injured his collarbone and is out for the rest of the season. Romo re-injured his shoulder in the game and now the playoffs are very unlikely for Dallas, who fell to 3-8 with the loss against undefeated Carolina.
Romo returned for the Cowboys against the Miami Dolphins after injuring his collarbone earlier in the season and on Thanksgiving he re-injured the same shoulder after taking a hard hit from Thomas Davis. According to the Dallas Morning News, owner Jerry Jones confirmed to reporters that Romo suffered a hairline fracture in his collarbone and he will not play again this season. Matt Cassel replaced Romo in the game and now will take over as the starter into Week 13.
Romo was out for 10 weeks after injuring his collarbone early in the season and the quarterback said to Fox Sports that he "knew the risk" in coming back. NFL Insider Jay Glazer reported that Romo was pushing to get back into the lineup once he was eligible to come off injured reserve and that may have contributed to the second injury, as the collarbone may not have been fully healed yet for the quarterback. Jones said that Romo will not need another procedure to repair the collarbone, but he will not be able to come back and play this season.
The Cowboys came into Thanksgiving with a solid chance to make a run at the division title if they could win some games down the stretch, but at 3-8 it will be very tough to win the NFC East title. The Giants were leading the division at 5-5 coming into Sunday, but after a loss to the Washington Redskins, both teams are 5-6 and Washington has the advantage down the back stretch of the season. The Cowboys can make up some ground with two games left against the Redskins on the schedule, but it will be very tough with Cassel as the starter and the team at the bottom of the division standings.
Romo had a tough game before getting injured with three interceptions and just 106 passing yards and he was not the only Cowboys offensive player who was frustrated by the Panthers. Dez Bryant also had a tough day, as he was matched up with cornerback Josh Norman and was basically shut down for the game. Bryant finished with just two catches on eight targets for 26 yards and according to Pro Football Focus, Bryant was covered by Norman on 43 of his 49 snaps in the game.
Norman was emotional after the game and according to the Dallas Morning News, Norman made some comments about Bryant, saying that the Cowboys should "get Dez's 70 mil back," referring to the new contract Bryant signed earlier in the year. Norman said he felt Bryant disrespected him and the Panthers secondary and that he was motivated to have a big game.