The Dallas defense took a big hit when MLB Anthony Hitch
ens went down with a serious knee injury during a victory against the Oakland Raiders.
He will miss eight weeks with a tibial plateau fracture, the Fort
Worth Star-Telegram reported. He started every game in 2016 and has recorded 100 or more tackles in two of his three NFL seasons. The Cowboys could plug Jay
lon Smith into his spot. The former Notre Dame star, making a comeback after missing last season with a severe knee injury, has been in on three tackles this preseason, but he has played fewer than 30 snaps and is being eased back into a full workload.
More likely, Smith and veteran backup Justin Durant will split time in the middle or Pro Bowl WLB Sean Lee could move back to his old position. Rookie watch: DE Taco Charlton picked up his second sack and unveiled a new celebration. The first-round choice mimed making tacos and handing them to teammates, who acted like they were taking bites. … Undrafted WR Lance Lenoir outran the coverage on a 44-yard touchdown pass from QB Cooper
Rush, another undrafted rookie having a strong camp. Lenoir also handled five punts and two kickoffs. Noteworthy: RB Ezekiel Elliott rushed six times for 18 yards with a long run of 5 yards and caught two passes for 6 yards. He was scheduled to appear in New York on Aug. 29 to appeal his six-game suspension. … Chaz
Green, the front-runner to start at left guard, left with an ankle injury. … La’el Collins, making the switch from left guard to right tackle, drew two flags for illegal hands to the face and a holding penalty.