Cowboys struggle in second preseason game

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- A few thoughts on the Dallas Cowboys' 23-6 loss to the San Francisco 49ers:

What it means: Thankfully for the Cowboys, this means nothing, but it does show there has to be some concern about the depth, especially along the offensive line.

The Cowboys did not have left tackle Tyron Smith (biceps), Zack Martin (stinger) or Ronald Leary (back) on the field Sunday. Doug Free lasted two series. Travis Frederick lasted three. Rookie La'el Collins and Darrion Weems failed to pick up a stunt that led to a sack. The running game averaged 3.3 yards per carry in the first half.

Slow going: Darren McFadden returned to the Bay Area as the Cowboys’ starting tailback and had three carries for 4 yards and caught one pass for 3 yards in two series of work. Lance Dunbar caught Tony Romo's only pass but slipped and lost a yard. Joseph Randle had seven carries for 30 yards. So far the Cowboys have not been able to answer the running back question.

Stat of note: Through two preseason games the Cowboys have scored two touchdowns on 22 possessions. It’s not time to panic but it is worth noting. But remember this: The starters have yet to play a snap together in the preseason. Perhaps things get better next week if Dez Bryant gets on the field.

Injuries of note: Backup quarterback Brandon Weeden went to the locker room after taking a blow to the head on a 9-yard sack from Quinton Dial and Eli Harold. Weeden lasted just nine plays and completed two of five passes for 7 yards.

What’s next: The Cowboys return to Oxnard, California, for the final week of training camp before returning home for their first preseason game at AT&T Stadium against the Minnesota Vikings.