FRISCO, Texas – There's always a silver lining to every situation, especially when your team is in the playoffs and knowing it will host a playoff game either way.
But as the Cowboys prepare for Saturday's game with the Eagles, more Covid-19 news keeps popping up.
On Thursday, the team added two more players and have two more guys miss practice with illnesses. Of those four players, two of which are the starting cornerbacks – Trevon Diggs and Anthony Brown.
For Diggs, missing the game would mean he'd miss out on a final chance to surpass Everson Walls' 40-year-old record for most picks in a season with 11.
But Brown is definitely out for the game, and with that, it means the Cowboys will have a chance to see some young cornerbacks in extensive situations.
Heading that list is rookie cornerback Kelvin Joseph, the Cowboys' second-round pick who has played more here in the last two games.
Joseph started two weeks ago vs. Washington and also played considerably more last week against the Cardinals. In fact, of his 120 defensive snaps this year, 106 have occurred in the last two weeks.
According to his defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, Joseph has taken advantage of these situations before.
"A few weeks ago with Jourdan (Lewis) being out, I thought it really showcased and highlighted Kelvin putting the work in to be ready," Quinn said. "So that moment, you really get a chance to prove yourself. To say 'Alright, in this moment, how's it going to go down, how are you going to be ready?' I thought the work that he's put in allowed himself to say 'When the moment comes, I'll be ready.' It's not the easiest thing to do. You're wanting to go, you're wanting to go, and all you're doing is practice. You're not getting the chances to go. So he had some playtime in the dime packages and others, but having that moment I guess proved the work that he put in about getting ready and playing, and it paid off. He'll get some opportunities for that on Saturday."
And he may not be the only one, especially if both Diggs and Brown are out. While Lewis will likely play and Maurice Canady should get more reps, rookie Nahshon Wright should also get some extra snaps.
Wright has played just 17 of a possible 1,076 defensive snaps this season, and 12 of them occurred two weeks ago in a blowout win vs. Washington. The third-round pick from Oregon State, who does have a touchdown on special teams this year, is another player who could benefit from the extra work in a game that may or may not matter to the Cowboys' playoff seedings.
But as the Cowboys always say, the evaluation process is 365 days a year, and for some of these young corners, Saturday night could be a big step in that very process.