Dallas Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee will not play on Sunday Night Football against the Philadelphia Eagles.
In the Cowboys’ last game against the Atlanta Falcons, Lee had to depart early because of a hamstring injury. It is the same hamstring that cost him two games in early October.
Lee will likely have to miss multiple games, and on Friday the Cowboys officially ruled him out against the Eagles. Linebacker Anthony Hitchens will assume Lee’s role of making the defensive signal calls.
Against the Falcons, the Cowboys defense did what it tends to do when Lee is on the sideline — not play nearly as well. The Falcons offense had been struggling in recent weeks, but began to find its stride during the 27-7 victory.
However, it wasn’t entirely the fault of the Cowboys defense. Their offense, without left tackle Tyron Smith and running back Ezekiel Elliott, was stuck in neutral for most of the game.
At 5-4, the Cowboys are still in a great position to make the playoffs, but a third NFC East crown in four seasons appears unlikely even if they somehow knock off the 8-1 Eagles.
However, that doesn’t make a victory any less important, and the defense will have to find away to play well without Lee in order for that to happen.