The Dallas Cowboys are reportedly expecting receiver Miles Austin to play in their Week 13 Sunday night showdown with the Philadelphia Eagles. Although they won’t make it, the Cowboys are still hopeful for a playoff spot, so having Austin healthy and on the field is key for a division win and a possible season sweep of the Eagles.
ESPN reported a source said the Cowboys are expecting Austin to recover from hip and back injuries he suffered during Dallas’ 38-31 loss to the Washington Redskins on Thanksgiving Day. Austin simply hasn’t been able to stay healthy during his seven-year NFL career, but when he’s on the field, he’s arguably the Cowboys’ most reliable weapon.
Although he trails both Dez Bryant and Jason Witten in targets, receptions and receiving yards, Austin leads Dallas in yards per reception with 14.8. Austin’s ability to break tackles and rack up yards after the catch is what makes him such a valuable asset to the Cowboys’ offense. Witten has nearly twice as many catches as Austin this season and Bryant leads the Monmouth product by 16, but Austin is second among his teammates in receiving touchdowns with four. He and Bryant are both right around the one-touchdown-per-10-catches mark, which is stellar for an NFL receiver, much less two on the same team.
Austin has sure hands and the trust of Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo, which means the offense flows smoother when he’s on the field. He went down early against the Redskins and Dallas’ offense struggled to put up points until after the game was nearly decided. In addition, he requires attention from opposing defenses, which allows guys like Bryant and Witten to get open easier. Cowboys fans who still think this team has a chance to make the playoffs should hope this rumor is true and Austin suits up on Sunday night.