In a season full of injuries, the Dallas Cowboys were given yet another scare on Christmas Eve during their matchup versus the Miami Dolphins. Veteran cornerback Stephon Gilmore went down in clear pain during the fourth quarter.
He left the game (albeit momentarily) before being able to return, which helped ease most fears. However, the update he provided following the loss still prompts some concern about the vet.
Gilmore told reporters he suffered a rib injury in the final period of the team's Christmas Eve affair. He did say he's good, though, and his ability to return to the contest backs that up.
That being said, a rib issue is always something to be worried about. This is a troublesome area that's prone to easy aggravations given the physical nature of this sport, which can make recovery tricky sometimes. There's also no telling how the 33-year-old will feel over the next day or two once the adrenaline of a game subsides.
The former Defensive Player of the Year is no spring chicken, which makes preserving his health a priority at this stage of the season. He's been excellent since arriving in Dallas this season, recording two interceptions, 12 passes defended and a forced fumble while earning a great 75.6 overall grade from ProFootballFocus.
Gilmore's play continuing to not skip a beat has helped hold down the Cowboys' secondary while injuries have shaken up this group. Now the veteran is the one whose health requires close monitoring.
Mike McCarthy's staff will have to weigh the risk/reward of playing Gilmore at potentially not quite 100% and making a push for the NFC East crown, or resting him to close the year to ensure he's ready to make an impact in the playoffs.
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