Cowboys’ Connor to assume role of injured Lee

Cowboys LB Sean Lee is done for the season after injuring his right big toe in last weekends game against the Carolina Panthers. The 26-year-old Lee was in his third season with the Cowboys after being drafted out of Penn State.

Taking the position of Lee will be Dan Connor.

Connor has 11 combined tackles this season and had a pass deflection last Sunday. Connor, 26, also is a product of Penn State and had played with Carolina for four seasons before reuniting with his former teammate Lee.

“It’s a long season. It’s a grind and guys get nicked up,” Connor told the Dallas News. “I don’t know if I’ve ever been on a team where everyone is able to stay healthy every play the whole year. So, it’s all about being ready and waiting on your opportunity pretty much and helping the team however you can, getting your role and taking advantage of your role but always being prepared to go in there and play.”

The injury to Lee occurred during the third quarter of Sunday’s 19-14 win against Carolina.  When asked after the game, Lee indicated he didn’t think the injury was that serious and he hoped to play this weekend against the Giants.

When Rob Ryan, defensive coordinator was asked about the severity of Lee’s injury he said he didn’t know, but was going to pray.

An MRI Tuesday confirmed that the ligament damage to Lee’s right big toe is so severe that it will require season-ending surgery.

Lee was a key piece to a Cowboys defense which was third against the pass and middle of the pack against the run. Lee had 58 tackles, a forced fumble and an interception before the injury.