The Dallas Cowboys have had a tough season while dealing with injuries and in Week 17 the team could consider shutting down Dez Bryant, who has been dealing with ankle and foot injury issues. Kellen Moore is starting on Sunday for the team and looking into the future, Jerry Jones likely will look for a new backup behind Tony Romo for the 2016 season.
--UPDATE: According to ESPN, Dez Bryant has been placed on IR and will have surgery.
The Cowboys have not yet shut down Dez Bryant for the season despite the fact that the team has been eliminated from playoff contention. According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, head coach Jason Garrett said that the team will evaluate Bryant's health heading into the weekend and decide whether or not he can play against the Redskins. Bryant had foot surgery earlier in the season and has recently been dealing with ankle, foot and knee injuries.
Bryant missed practice and did not play last week and this season he has just 31 catches in nine games. The Cowboys likely will be cautious with Bryant, as there really isn't anything to play for in Week 17 apart from draft position. The team is starting Kellen Moore and the Cowboys have the chance to end up with a top five pick in the draft this season depending on how the final week plays out.
The Cowboys may look at finding a young quarterback to develop in the draft this year, as players like Paxton Lynch, Jared Goff, Cody Kessler and Connor Cook could be available. NFL.com also reports that Robert Griffin III could be a target for the Cowboys if he is released by the Redskins. Ian Rapoport reports that the Eagles, Saints and Texans also could be interested.
Jason Garrett is likely safe heading out of the season, as the Cowboys dealt with numerous injuries, but there have been some talk in the media that Jones could consider making a move. Garrett has had a successful run with the Cowboys and just signed a five year deal worth $30 million, but there is a chance that Jones could make a move if he felt the team should have been better despite the injuries. Jones had made some comments about the coaching staff not "winning enough games," but that doesn't mean Garrett will be done.
According to Pro Football Talk, the buyout for Garrett would be over $20 million and while Jones has a ton of money, that could be too much to fire a coach who lost his two best players for most of the season. The Cowboys are 4-11 and while all of that isn't on Garrett, Jones likely felt there was enough talent here to at least make a run at the playoffs. Having Tony Romo and Dez Bryant out for long stretches didn't help the Cowboys and that is not on Garrett. Jones also did not have a great plan in place behind Romo with a backup quarterback and that also hurt the Cowboys this season. Garrett likely will be safe for next season.
Check here for more on the Cowboys and Bryant.