FRISCO, Texas – As of Tuesday morning, the Cowboys have yet to rule out Zack Martin to play against the Bucs Thursday night.
That doesn't mean things won't change by the end of the day or even Wednesday before the team departs for Tampa Bay, but for now, the Cowboys still think there's a small chance Martin could play.
He's currently in the COVID-19 protocol after testing positive earlier this week. But if he can pass two tests in a 24-hour span before the game, and be symptom free for 48 hours, Martin would be cleared the play.
"The facts are we've got a protocol," Cowboys owner/GM Jerry Jones said on 105.3 The Fan Tuesday morning. "(Martin) will do the testing that's called for in the protocol, a couple of negative tests over the next two to three days would have him available. It is nothing to compare it to because each individual has its own situation regarding this testing. As you know, we've had people test positive and have false positive. This isn't more likely the case, but I'm giving you the reason I can't give you a firm answer."
If Martin could get two negative tests, he could fly on a separate plane to Tampa Bay and play in the game if he's feeling well enough and cleared to be activated from Reserve/COVID-19.
But there are still a lot of "ifs" in this equation, enough that head coach Mike McCarthy told reporters on Tuesday that he's not expecting Martin to play, though he did say if anybody could play on short notice, it's a veteran like Martin.
If he doesn't, Connor McGovern would get the start at right guard, a spot he's practiced at all week in preparation for this scenario.