Amari Cooper, DeMarcus Lawrence among Dallas Cowboys starting camp on injured list

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One step forward. One step back.

The excitement of quarterback Dak Prescott, tight end Blake Jarwin and offensive lineman Zack Martin, La’el Collins and Tyron Smith being cleared for the start of the Dallas Cowboys’ training camp has been offset by a new crop of injury-related absences heading into the team’s first practice.

On Thursday, receiver Amari Cooper (ankle), defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence (back), defensive tackle Trysten Hill (knee), kicker Greg Zuerlein (back), defensive end Chauncey Golston (hamstring) and tackle Mitch Hyatt (knee) all found themselves opening camp on the physically unable to perform list.

Rookie receiver T.J. Vasher was put on the non-football injury list as he works back from a knee injury he sustained in college at Texas Tech.

“I think it’s just being smart,” coach Mike McCarthy said. “I don’t have any long-term concerns really with any of the guys.”

Cooper, who signed five-year, $100 million contract in March of 2020, is still recovering from offseason ankle surgery. He appeared in all 16 games last season and posted his second straight 1,100-plus-yard season.

McCarthy isn’t worried about Cooper not being ready soon. “He looks great,” McCarthy said. ”He’s in great shape. I’m not concerned.”

Lawrence had a back issue that cropped in the spring, forcing him to undergo surgery. He has had back issues dating back to the 2015 season, which led to surgery in early 2016, but the veteran hasn’t missed a game in the last four seasons. The Cowboys feel good about seeing him back in action soon.

Hill, who still recovering from a torn ACL, is the farthest away from returning, according to McCarthy.

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