The Seattle Seahawks won't see receiver Dez Bryant on Thursday night but will see a couple of former teammates.
The prospect of the Dallas Cowboys and Dez Bryant coming to town Thursday night had me wondering if the Seahawks might use the game — the traditional “dress rehearsal” when veterans play the most — to show any cards in their secondary.
Specifically, would Seattle again use Richard Sherman to trail receiver Dez Bryant, as he did in a 13-12 Seahawks’ regular season win last year? In that game, Sherman helped hold Bryant to two catches for 15 yards, as big of a factor as any in Seattle getting a hard-fought win.
Bryant, though, has been ruled out for Thursday’s game with a concussion, meaning we won’t find out if the Seahawks would have used Sherman to shadow Bryant, even if just a preseason game, and how that would have impacted the rest of the secondary, as well, with DeShawn Shead in the lead for the other boundary cornerback job and Jeremy Lane in the slot.
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Bryant had been off to a fabulous start with four catches on four targets with two touchdowns in the first two games.
The Seattle secondary may be back to full strength for the Dallas game as safety Kam Chancellor has been expected back at practice this week with a chance of playing against the Cowboys. Despite the loss of Bryant, the Seahawks should still get a good test from a Dallas offense that is averaging 32.5 points per game in two preseason contests — most in the NFL — and 384 yards per game led by a healthy Tony Romo (who didn’t play last year in the regular season against Seattle) and rookie quarterback Dak Prescott.
The Cowboys also feature a couple of names familiar to Seahawks fans — defensive end Benson Mayowa and fullback Rod Smith.
Mayowa was a member of Seattle’s 2013 Super Bowl-winning team as an undrafted free agent out of Idaho who made the squad as a rush end.
Now with the Cowboys, he is listed second on the depth chart at right defensive end but has yet to play in the preseason after having arthroscopic knee surgery recently. He is expected to play against the Seahawks, however.
Smith was in camp with the Seahawks last fall as a running back and played in one game at Cincinnati before being released and landing in Dallas.