Four-time Pro Bowler and Cowboys starter gets brutal news ahead of key game

Oh no.

The Dallas Cowboys are in a bad spot right now.

Sure, they're on a three-game winning streak but they're heading into their next matchup against the Atlanta Falcons without star running back Ezekiel Elliott, who's back on suspension, and now Adam Schefter of ESPN is reporting that Dallas will be down another starter.

Schefter and Todd Archer of ESPN pass on that the Cowboys will be without starting left tackle Tyron Smith because of a groin strain:

Smith was ruled out Saturday after he was officially listed as questionable on the injury report. Smith did not practice during the week and was unable to finish last week's win against the Kansas City Chiefs. He has been playing through back tightness and a hip strain. This will be the fourth game that Smith has missed during the past two seasons because of injury.

Per Archer, Chaz Green will replace Smith in the starting lineup, and it's worth noting that Green did start at guard for the Cowboys in the season opener. Still, this is a huge loss for the Cowboys considering Atlanta's pretty tough defense.

The Falcons are a top ten team in the NFL as far as total defense is concerned, so sans Elliott and now without Smith, Dallas' job just got a lot harder.

According to ESPN's power football index, the Falcons are already slight favorites to win the game.