USA Today

Dallas Cowboys linebacker Sean Lee was already set to miss the first three weeks of the 2020 season after the club placed him on injured reserve to begin the year, but now he's looking at a much longer timetable before he next hits the field. The 34-year-old veteran is expected to be out for the next six weeks after undergoing hernia surgery, according to Jane Slater of the NFL Network. Lee had the procedure done in Philadelphia last week, per Slater, with noted specialist Dr. William Meyers, and is now looking at a potential mid-October return to action. 

This news further emphasizes the lack of depth Dallas currently has at linebacker. Along with Lee sidelined for the foreseeable future, fellow linebacker Leighton Vander Esch is looking at a 6-8 week absence after suffering a broken collarbone in Dallas' Week 1 loss to the Los Angeles Rams

With these injuries in mind, Joe Thomas will be elevated on the Cowboys depth chart and the club could look outside the organization for some help. CBS Sports Cowboys Insider Patrik Walker recently highlighted five potential names that Dallas could reach out to, including Clay Matthews, who played for first-year Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy during their time in Green Bay. 

As for Lee, this is hardly the first time that he's faced an injury during his decade-long career. In fact, 2019 was the lone season of his career that the linebacker was able to play in all 16 regular season games. During that campaign, he totaled 86 tackles, a sack, and four passes defended.