Cowboys rookie Micah Parsons was preparing for what he expected to “feel like a home game.”
The Cowboys conclude their regular season Saturday night at Philadelphia in a game fewer than two hours’ driving from Parsons’ hometown of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.
Now, his status for the game is in jeopardy.
The Cowboys announced late Wednesday morning that Parsons had entered COVID-19 protocol. He did not practice Wednesday and tweeted later in the afternoon that he was “saddened.”
“I feel like I let my team down,” Parsons said in his tweet. “I’ll be back better than ever. I’m only going to be more hungry!”
At 11-5, the Cowboys have already claimed the NFC East title and will a host a wild-card matchup in 10-12 days. Current NFL COVID-19 protocols give Parsons ample flexibility to return in time for that matchup, as well as for practice next week.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR?: Micah Parsons states his case for top honor
Dallas Cowboys outside linebacker Micah Parsons (11) celebrates a sack in the second quarter against the Washington Football Team at AT&T Stadium.
Parsons becomes the latest member of the Cowboys linebacker room to enter protocol. Keanu Neal missed Dallas’ previous game vs. Arizona, a 25-22 loss. Parsons has not missed a game in a Pro Bowl rookie campaign during which he’s raced to 13 sacks, 30 quarterback hits, 20 tackles for loss (tied for most in NFL), three forced fumbles and three pass deflections.
He spoke Tuesday about how much pride he takes in his availability and versatility.
“I take complete pride in being the most versatile player in the NFL,” Parsons said. “When I came in here, (Assistant to the head) coach Rob Davis said the best ability is availability. I took that and a lot of ownership because I feel like if I want to be on the field, I’ve got to be able to do anything asked of me or more. I just like lining up everywhere and just being dynamic. It’s almost like at recess for me. I feel like I’m a kid…