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Cowboys LB Vander Esch exits with neck injury

espn nfl NEWS CyberS

Cowboys LB Vander Esch exits with neck injury

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Dallas Cowboys linebacker Leighton Vander Esch has been ruled out of the second half of Sunday’s game against the Jacksonville Jaguars because of a neck injury suffered on the first series.

Vander Esch, the Cowboys’ leading tackler entering Sunday, got hurt on an 11-yard run by Jaguars running back Travis Etienne. He was replaced by rookie Damone Clark, who started the year on the non-football injury list after undergoing neck surgery in March.

Vander Esch suffered a neck injury in 2019 that led him to play just seven games and have surgery. Vander Esch played in 10 games in 2020 because of a broken collarbone and ankle issue, but had played in 30 straight games entering Sunday.

Vander Esch had 99 tackles in the first 13 games, including a season-high 12 in last week’s win against the Houston Texans.

With Vander Esch out, the Cowboys have Clark, Anthony Barr and Luke Gifford at linebacker. In the past month Micah Parsons has seen a handful of snaps at linebacker, spending most of his time as a defensive end. Jabril Cox is inactive.

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