ARLINGTON, Texas — It became an Elliott-less evening in Arlington.
Dallas’s Ezekiel Elliott served the second installment of his six-game NFL suspension, and the Eagles lost kicker Jake Elliott in the first quarter of a game the Cowboys led, 9-7, at the half..
Jake Elliott went in to be evaluated for a head injury shortly after missing a 34-yard field goal. Earlier, on the opening kickoff, Elliott had to make the tackle to keep Ryan Switzer from going all the way. That apparently was when Elliott suffered the concussion, lowering his helmet into Switzer’s helmet and shoulder. Switzer’s 61-yard return set up the Cowboys’ first field goal and foreshadowed a sloppy first half for the Eagles.
Elliott was ruled out of the game shortly after the start of the second half.
The Eagles signed Elliott after Caleb Sturgis tore a hip flexor in the opener. Sturgis is eligible to come back from injured reserve now. But they don’t let you do that in the middle of a game.
Elliott has set a franchise record with five 50-yard-plus field goals this season.
After Elliott went down, special-teams wiz Kamu Grugier-Hill kicked into a net on the sideline. Once he missed the net.
Darby supports Winston
Before returning to the lineup Sunday night for the first time since he dislocated his right ankle in the season opener, Eagles cornerback Ronald Darby once again came to the defense of his former Florida State teammate, Tampa Bay quarterback Jameis Winston.
Winston is facing an allegation from an Uber driver that he groped her on a 2016 ride. Darby released a statement over the weekend saying that he was on the ride with Winston, and that Winston did nothing wrong.
Darby also spoke up on Winston’s behalf in the wake of a 2012 incident at Florida State, in which Winston was accused of sexual assault by a woman who was also an FSU student.
In the Uber matter, the driver told BuzzFeed news that Winston was sitting next to her, as the only passenger in the car, and that he grabbed her crotch when they stopped at a Scottsdale, Ariz., fast-food takeout window.
“I felt the need to come forward and clarify some inaccurate accounts of the evening of March 13, 2016, when myself, a friend, and Jameis Winston took an Uber ride in Arizona,” Darby said in his statement. “There were three of us in the car, not just one as has been reported. Myself and Jameis were in the backseat. I am confident that nothing inappropriate in nature happened in the car that evening and Jameis did not have any physical contact with the Uber driver. The accusations are just not true.”
Winston released a statement in which he said the driver “was confused as to the number of passengers in the car and who was sitting next to her” – Winston seemingly leaving open the possibility that there could have been a passenger sitting next to the driver who groped her.
In the 2012 incident, Darby and FSU defensive end Chris Casher furnished affidavits in which they said they saw Winston having consensual sex with the woman in Winston’s off-campus apartment. They later declined to testify at a student conduct code hearing. Florida State and Winston eventually paid to settle with the woman in a civil suit, though no criminal charges were filed.
Darby intercepted Dallas quarterback Dak Prescott in the second quarter Sunday night, one of two interceptions the Eagles were unable to convert into points.
No Beatty or Ellerbe just yet
The two veterans the Eagles added last week, offensive tackle Will Beatty and linebacker Dannell Ellerbe, were inactive Sunday night.
This wasn’t a big surprise, given that coaches spoke of needing to familiarize them with the Eagles’ systems.
Also as expected, with tight end Zach Ertz returning from a one-game absence because of a hamstring injury , running back Wendell Smallwood was inactive. Smallwood is the fifth running back on the depth chart now, as a result of the trade for Jay Ajayi.
Dallas left tackle Tyron Smith missed his second successive game with groin and back problems. Smith didn’t practice all week but was listed as questionable on Friday, instead of out.