Needing some depth at offensive tackle, the Cowboys made the choice to activate second-year lineman Matt Waletzko from injured reserve, per ESPN’s Todd Archer. The team also took advantage of the active roster addition to waive veteran linebacker Rashaan Evans, who was arrested for marijuana possession yesterday in Frisco, Texas, according to Aaron Wilson of KPRC 2.
With starting offensive tackle Tyron Smith and versatile backup lineman Chuma Edoga both on the injury report this week, Waletzko finds his way back to the active roster just in time to provide some necessary depth. His practice window opened exactly 21 days ago, meaning that he may not be ready to return right away and that the move may have been necessary in order to avoid him reverting back to season-ending IR. Regardless, he’s back on the active roster now, and the Cowboys will be counting on him to provide some depth down the stretch of the regular season and beyond.
As for Evans, the team’s depth at linebacker is not exactly overflowing. That doesn’t exactly mean that the move is a reaction to the 28-year-old’s arrest this week. In fact, Michael Gehlken of the Dallas Morning News refuted that exact assertion, claiming that the Cowboys “downplayed the timing” of the two events even seeming to hint that Evans is a candidate to return to the practice squad, should he clear waivers. Though Evans earned a start earlier in the season, his usage as of late has shown that the team has been relying on the veteran linebacker less and less leading up to his placement on waivers, supporting the claim that waiving him may be unrelated to his arrest.
Regardless, Waletzko now holds the spot on the 53-man roster and will make an effort to contribute while he’s there. Evans, on the other hand, will await his fate on waivers with a chance to return to Dallas in a practice squad role.