Report: Cowboys picking between Garrett Gilbert, Cooper Rush to start vs. Steelers

Jack Baer
·Writer
·3 min read

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Andy Dalton will miss Sunday’s game against the Pittsburgh Steelers, but not because of the concussion he sustained from a dirty hit in Week 7.

Instead, Dalton will be out because the Cowboys are placing him on the reserve/COVID-19 list, according to ESPN’s Todd Archer. The reserve/COVID-19 list denotes players who have either tested positive or have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive. Dalton had already missed Week 8’s game with the concussion.

It remains unclear who will start at QB for the Cowboys on Sunday with Dalton out, but it’s obvious a game that was already looking rough could now be veering into some truly dark territory.

LANDOVER, MD - OCTOBER 25: Andy Dalton #14 of the Dallas Cowboys looks on before the game against the Washington Football Team at FedExField on October 25, 2020 in Landover, Maryland. (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)
Andy Dalton wouldn't have exactly made the Cowboys favorites against the Steelers, but losing him could make things rough on Sunday. (Photo by Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)

Steelers-Cowboys could be a bloodbath

Let’s start with a team that was already facing problems early in the season, namely a defense that was among the worst in the NFL and an offensive line depleted by injury and an All-Pro’s retirement. Then take away the star quarterback. Then take away that quarterback’s backup. Give them a $90 million running back averaging a career low in yards per rush. Have their defensive coordinator get hot sauce in his eyes.

That is the 2020 Dallas Cowboys, and now they’re about to face a 7-0 team that just caused even Lamar Jackson to struggle.

The Steelers currently rank No. 2 in Yahoo Sports’ power rankings, and you can bet they were waiting to unleash their blitz-happy defense against third-string QB Ben DiNucci, a player whom team owner Jerry Jones admitted looked overwhelmed against the 3-4-1 Philadelphia Eagles.

However, DiNucci reportedly won’t even be the starter at quarterback.

Cowboys picking between Cooper Rush and Garrett Gilbert

Per NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, the Cowboys plan to give both Garrett Gilbert and practice-squader Cooper Rush a shot at the starting job this week against the Steelers. DiNucci, who completed 21-of-40 yards for 180 yards and no touchdowns Sunday, reportedly won’t be part of the competition.

Combined, Gilbert and Rush have nine career NFL pass attempts.

Both players have spent most of their NFL careers as third-stringers or practice-squaders, though Gilbert is coming off a performance in the AAF in which he led the league in passing yards and passer rating for the Orlando Apollos.

Whoever wins out, this one is still probably going to get ugly.

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