Jerry Jones optimistic about Zack Martin's knee injury

The Dallas Cowboys rolled into their preseason game against the Cincinnati Bengals on Saturday with star back Ezekiel Elliott tucked away on the sideline.

It's fair to wonder if the same strategy should have been used with Zack Martin, the All-Pro right guard who left minutes into the second quarter with a knee injury following a second-down run by Rod Smith.

Martin, 27, ducked into the team's injury tent before exiting with a limp toward the Dallas locker room, according to multiple reports. He later appeared on the sideline in street clothes and appeared to be in good spirits.

After the Cowboys' preseason loss, team owner Jerry Jones said the team is optimistic Martin's injury isn't serious. He said the plan is for Martin to undergo an MRI to find out more about the injury.

The second-highest-paid guard league-wide, Martin in June inked a six-year, $84 million extension with $40 million guaranteed. Lodged inside a gritty front five with Mr. Everything left tackle Tyron Smith and Pro Bowl center Travis Frederick, Martin looms as one of the NFL's most valuable in-the-trenches talents.

In addition to Martin, safety Xavier Woods also made an early exit after suffering a hamstring injury in the first half. Woods is set to undergo an MRI to determine the severity of the injury.

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