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Cowboys activate LB Leighton Vander Esch ahead of MNF vs. Cardinals

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA - SEPTEMBER 29: Michael Thomas #13 of the New Orleans Saints is tackled by Leighton Vander Esch #55 of the Dallas Cowboys during the first half of a game at the Mercedes Benz Superdome on September 29, 2019 in New Orleans, Louisiana. (Photo by Jonathan Bachman/Getty Images)

The Dallas Cowboys appear to be getting one of their top playmakers on defense back in the fold for the team’s Monday Night Football showdown with the Arizona Cardinals.

The team activated linebacker Leighton Vander Esch to the active roster Monday morning, the Cowboys announced.

The LB is expected to play for the first time since suffering a broken collarbone in Week 1.

Additionally, the team placed quarterback Dak Prescott (fractured ankle) and defensive tackle Trysten Hill (torn ACL) on injured reserve.

In two seasons (25 games) with the Cowboys, Vander Esch recorded 215 tackles, three for losses, two interceptions, seven pass deflections and two QB hits.

The linebacker made the Pro Bowl his rookie year in 2018, but battled a neck injury and played in just nine games last season.

Vander Esch is a big addition to a defense that has been abysmal all season.

Heading into Week 6, the Cowboys allowed the most points in the NFL with 180. The defense has allowed at least 37 points to opposing offenses the last four weeks of action, including a 49-point shelling from the Cleveland Browns in Week 4.


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