Cowboys, Zack Martin will face scrutiny over Sean Lee injury


The Cowboys’ chief concern right now is the health of linebacker Sean Lee, who suffered a knee injury at today’s Organized Team Activities. But the Cowboys also need to be concerned about what the league and the NFL Players Association have to say about the circumstances that led to Lee’s injury.

Specifically, the Cowboys could face discipline for the fact that rookie offensive lineman Zack Martin was blocking Lee and ended up on the ground on top of him on the play on which Lee suffered his knee injury. OTAs are supposed to be non-contact, and Martin and Lee clearly engaged with each other on the play, although Lee looked like he was trying to plant his feet and shift directions before he engaged with Martin, so his knee injury may have happened without contact.

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said afterward that he has given proper instruction to his players about the rules on OTAs.

“We keep preaching, ‘Stay off the ground. Stay off the ground,’” Garrett said, via the Dallas Morning News. “That’s a really important thing. Injuries happen when guys hit the ground.”

Martin said he was disappointed to see Lee get hurt.

“I don’t really know what happened, two guys playing hard and running to the ball, so we’ll see what happens,” Martin said. “It sucks to see someone go down. It happens and I can only hope for the best.”

Right now, the severity of Lee’s injury isn’t known. But the Cowboys are fearing the worst.

89 responses to “Cowboys, Zack Martin will face scrutiny over Sean Lee injury

  1. Zack Martin probably will face scrutiny but he was trying to put in a nice effort especially being a rookie. Nobody wants to be known as the one that half asses it especially your first day of OTAs and sweet Jesus Sean Lee is an injury waiting to happen sheesh.

  2. The vets pointed Zach towards the large man in the shadows with a hood covering his features, who was wielding a sharp axe. “Hey Rook, time to go over and face Scrutiny.”.

  3. Before all of you who speak before getting the facts. The video of injury is on NFL . Com Seans knee had buckled prior to contact. Ok carry on with your uneducated comments.

  4. It shows me toughness, I believe it was a freak accident. I applaud Martin, can’t wait to see what he does to the opposition.

  5. Martin will probably face scrutiny, but unfairly if you ask me.

    In drills, even non contact drills, you almost have to go full speed. If you don’t, the other guy across from you surely is- and he will make you look stupid if you’re not going full speed.

    Ask anyone who has played at the next level. Even walk through are not “walk throughs”. You have to keep in mind that these guys are competition bred.

    If I had to bet what happened, it was two guys going harder than they probably should have at this point of offseason activity. And unfortunately, they were engaged in contact while the rules specify otherwise at this point. Thus Martin will be criticized.

  6. I can just see Jason running around in checkered shorts squeaking “Stay off the ground, stay off the ground!”. It’s dirty, and who knows what’s been on it?

  7. Martin looked like he was just sweeping out to his right and running ahead of the RB. Lee looks like he is engaging as opposed to running out of the play. IMO

  8. Heck, Martin isn’t even under contract yet, and may be subject to fines, etc.

  9. For breaking the non-contact rules, maybe the Cowboys should be disciplined by the Commissioner. His inclination would probably be to take a draft pick. Although some would say that losing Sean Lee is a very hefty price to pay.

  10. Redskins fan here. It sucks that Sean Lee got hurt. Never want to see that. However, I’d love to see the commissioner fine them a draft pick for violating the non-contact rules.

  11. Every year in camp its always somebody who doesnt understand what the fugg 50% or stay off the ground means….it always ends up bad

  12. Just watched on nfl .com…..lee was clearly ran over by martin and drove into the ground in a no contact play…..Good going idiot u just knocked out dallas best player on defense….Which is on the same team as u

  13. I’m an Eagles fan, but this is a bummer. You want to beat your opponents full strength. This reminds me of when Stewart Bradley tore his ACL in training camp.

    It does seem like freak injuries happen early then settle down. Might be a conditioning thing.

  14. i love sean lee but he is like fine china.

    can’t build a defense around that guy. can’t even count on him to be in the lineup.

  15. The Cowboys FINALLY fix their o-line and now their fans are mad about it? Wow. I know Sean Lee is a huge loss, but don’t be stupid… Zack Martin will end up being one of the best players in a very deep class. And arguably the hardest worker. Gruden grinder! Haha

  16. It shows me toughness, I believe it was a freak accident. I applaud Martin, can’t wait to see what he does to the opposition.
    Might want to pump your brakes, toughness in pajamas is different than full speed, full pads, just saying

  17. Sorry about Lee. Wouldn’t worry about Goodell…he’s too busy deeply analyzing Irsay’s situation to even consider this unfortunate incident…oh, wait, there are players involved? Sanctions forthcoming before midnight tonight.

  18. To all u clowns the keep applauding martin.. he just knocked ur own guy out in a no contact play….no contact means don’t touch period…This is why ur team is so bad…So he hit lee and drove him in the ground when lee thought it was no contact…..WOOOOOW…

  19. Needed to draft a safety. Losing ware is huge. Drafted a linemen, while fans wanted manziel. 5-11 with Romo coming off back surgery

  20. I’m just going to tell it like it is. Martin will probably be a tackle on this team for the next decade while Lee would have been hurt sooner than later anyway. He is not the answer defensively. Just too unreliable. Better it happens now than in the middle of the season when Dallas can use it as another excuse as to why they are finishing 8-8.

  21. If you look closely at the video, Lee’s feet go out from under him when he looks to put the brakes on. The contact was minimal between him and Martin, but if his leg jammed in the turf then having any weight from a 300 lb lineman wasn’t going to make the situation better.

    Just watch his feet fly out before you attack Martin as the villain or pulling draft picks. Hand to hand contact is not the issue here.

  22. They need defense…so they take an offensive lineman…who hurts one of the few good defensive players they have.

    And that, Alanis, is irony.

  23. Still waiting for the day when the Eagles have any fans with class …… Obviously not today, the streak lives on!

  24. Goodell will give the cowboys what he gave the Seahawks a few years back for being too physical in OTA’s which is a reduced amount of contact practices .

    I agree 100% with the poster above ,as someone whose played high level football your completely correct even half speed is full speed just not taking people down . Particularly The beginning of the season when people are earning their spot and respect . It’s never all on one guy unless you see them driving them into the ground in this case the video looks like he had good positions and had a forward lean on to Lee and fell over him once he lost his balance .

    Truth is football is a collision sport not contact sport and it’s inheritantly dangerous including stuff like this . People get hurt training so all these fans complaining about contact rules need to chill . Stuff happens period !

  25. The Cowboys did draft a couple LBs in Hitchens and Will Smith. It’s May not August, so they have time to look at some free agents out there too.

    It’s very unfortunate what happened but not the end of the season.

  26. Sucks the guy got hurt, but you gotta see this as a good sign for Zack Martin. Gotta be doing something right if you knock down one of the best players on the team.

  27. Let me attempt to atone for Eagles fans by saying it’s never a good thing to see players hurt. The same thing happened to Maclin last year, with even less contact. Anyone’s team can catch the injury bug & karma’s a b!tch. Why it keeps happening to Lee, I have no idea. He’s a real good player but just has the worst luck.

  28. In the video on it looked like Lee planted his left foot, his leg gave out, he fell and Martin had no place to go and fell on top of Lee. No foul by Martin.

  29. For those of you suggesting the forfeiture of a Draft pick, please watch the play before you speak. Martin hardly got a hand on Lee, you can see Sean sliding into Martin as he tried to change direction. This is still football people. The non-contact rules aren’t in place to punish players or teams if a collision happens to occur.

  30. Eagles Fan Here – I really feel bad about Sean Lee. Hope it’s just tweaked. We love our rivalry and we get more satisfaction when we win against your team at full strength. Hope he comes back stronger. You will need him this season for sure.

  31. Hey NFLPA, be careful what you wish (negotiate) for. It seems like more guys are getting injured in OTA’s and mini-camp than before the new agreement. When one guy thinks he can get away with 1/3 speed and the other guy thinks he can go 2/3 speed, injuries are more likely than if they both were at full speed.

  32. I’m sure the Cowboys’ GM is burning up the wire finding a replacement.

  33. Can’t slight Ozzie and get away with it. Same happened with the Bears. Karma presents itself in many ways. I just feel bad for the player.

  34. Come on guys, He has a his-story of being injured, It’s the Blue Star Special, just like Miles Austin. Face it he can’t stay on the field, he is a great player, but with all of the injuries: knee, finger, toe, etc, sounds like a preschool dance. The best thing Sean Lee can do to help the Cowboys is retire and start his career as a coach.

  35. Skins fan here, its May, put him on the injured designated return list he can still come back this season. Melvin Ingram did it last season in San Diego.

  36. You know what’s worst than Lee injury, JJ giving up top dollar to an injury prone player.
    Jerry Jones should be smart enough to tell he is not a good GM.

  37. I wish Lee could just stay healthy. He’s a fun player to watch. This coming from an avid Skins fan. Get well Lee.

  38. “There was maybe light unintended contact in a non-contact practice. I say they should be stripped of $5M of cap space and lose their first round pick.”

    -John Mara

  39. I hate the cowboys more than anything in the universe. The owner is a loudmouthed twat who should wake up and get a GM. I feel sorry for Lee, Who, when’s he’s on the field, is a damn good LB. Why is he so fragile? This is the second time friendly fire has put him down and he barely got touched!

  40. Lee said his foot slipped. He said it wasn’t any player’s fault. Now that should clear Martin. God bless Lee!

  41. Well stated! That’s the way the game should be for fans. Let our teams compete and we enjoy beating our division rivals, twice as much. Want them all healthy and competing!

    These guys have family’s to take care of and injuries are awful in a sport that drops/cuts them. Unlike baseball your deal is until the last day, the last dollar. Football players have to remain at the top of their game and not get injured!

  42. “We keep preaching, ‘Stay off the ground. Stay off the ground,’” Garrett said, via the Dallas Morning News. “That’s a really important thing. Injuries happen when guys hit the ground.”

    How about telling players “Do not put anybody on the ground.” And if they still can’t understand that, then everybody should wear a red jersey for OTA.
    It looks like this happened from his own effort at some play rather than being hit but hopefully 31 other teams are paying attention to this.

  43. From what I’m seeing, the contact was mostly incidental and had little to do with the injury. Seems like Lee’s knee was doomed from the moment he planted his foot.

    However, people need to remember that rookies (at least the ones who actually have the drive to be part of this league) are out to prove a lot, even during non-contact OTA’s. They need to show coaches and their veteran peers that they’re men, ready to take all the pain and gain from day one. It’s no surprise when a rook gets overzealous trying to prove something.

  44. Remember that game in November when Dallas got manhandled by New Orleans Saints 49-17, gave up an NFL record 40 first downs and 625 total yards of offense. Wheels really fell off once Sean Lee was out of the game. As a Cowboys fan I am not sure if I will tune in on Sundays to watch this train wreck.

  45. pat angerer or erin henderson could be decent replacements. not much to pick from at this point in free agency.

  46. Sean Lee and his glass jaw…i never even realized he missed so many games until they said so on NFL network…when DMcFadden gets injured at least everyone knows hes hurt and out of action but when Lee is hurt the cowboys still 8-8 no matter what…RAIDER NATION “

  47. its Zach Martins fault this guy is injury prone and has been since Zach Martin was taking his SATs? Come on it could Martin Lawrence or Zach Galifianakis and the result is still the same.

  48. I’m sorry, it reflects poor prep for ota’s, clearly Martin engaged beyond what was called for.

    I blame the coaching.

  49. i hate the cowboys but people need to remember this is a man’s health and career. do you really need to get your laughs about this?

  50. Last year, Cowboys defense ranked at the bottom. So, Jerry Jones picks an O lineman with his first pick. Mr. Jones is clearly the least qualified GM in sports. With Lee out for the year, the ‘Boys will finish 5-11. Your fans thank you for your incompetence, Jerry. You should really give them a much better product, but you never will…

  51. Don’t worry Dallas has such great GM/President they’ll pick up new talent and move on.

  52. I think the commisioner will bring the hammer down on the Cowboys with a terrible punnishment – the ruling will be that Jerry Jones will remain in charge on all personnel decisions for the next 10 years. Oh, wait…..

  53. Manziel would have never hurt Lee. Meanwhile you got a old qb on the backside of his average career that’s not healthy. Makes a lot of sense to pass on the best qb in the nation. Smh

  54. Just watched the video on, and holy crap martin lit him up. I have watched it over and over and have not seen any knee buckle prior to the hit like SOME people on here are saying. Good to see cowboy fans defending so many cowboy mistakes before their awful season even starts. Only thing cowboys will be defending this year are themselves.

  55. Do any Cowboy fans ever comment on here? Seems it’s always some other fans bad mouthing the team. A player get knocked out with an injury, it’s bad I don’t care how, when, where or who! A Cowboy fan hoping for the best. Go Boys

  56. Lee has the heart and talent of a starter but the body of a special teams player at best but truth be known his body may be ready for retirement. We should have realistic expectations for our team as the defense will still underperform especially since Lee is most likely lost for the season. I have said this before Jerry has spent a lot of money and has a decent .500 football team but no one should seriously look at this team as a real contender. Moments of glory followed by bitter disappointment is our fate but the Boys are all we have so try and enjoy the ride it will be bumpy. Might try watching Houston from time to time if it gets too bad they might be a entertaining way to reduce my stress levels. Maybe another 8-8 season,9-7 if we get lucky 7-9 or worse if things go badly. Let us pray.

  57. “scrunity?” Martin was running and would have missed Lee but Lee stopped suddenly. If you’re walking somewhere and a person crosses your path, you adjust your speed. But if they step in front of you and stop and you bump into them it’s hardly qualifies to call a cop for assault.

  58. What would it hurt???? Take a look at Vince Young…..
    There are a lot worse QBs on NFL rosters that has never had the success Vince Young has had …(NFL Rookie of the Year, 2 Pro Bowls, Playoff experience and Mobility). Vince has a career winning record of 31-19…
    He can help this team…even if it’s just upgrading the quarterback pool…

  59. People all season have been talking about how our DES and DTS are bad. People seem to forget that our biggest hole on defense is our linebackers. We have no depth whatsoever at linebacker.

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