Sunday, December 30, 2012
Big Decision: Demarcus Ware should play situationally
By Jean-Jacques Taylor
DeMarcus Ware has been playing with essentially one arm for a while.
His right arm is a mess. He has been battling through a hyper-extended elbow and shoulder strain.
He missed 36 snaps last week -- more than he missed the last three games combined -- because he aggravated one of the injuries and spent much of the second half on the sideline. With a playoff berth a stake, perhaps it's time for defensive coordinator Rob Ryan to make a bold move.
This is the week to make Ware a situational player and maximize his effectiveness. That means no wasted snaps where he's dropping into coverage.
Use him in passing situations only -- and it doesn't matter whether it's second or third down. The idea is to maximize his efficiency. In this game, it's better to get 35-40 dynamic snaps instead of 60 ordinary plays because Ware is hobbled.
It's not ideal and Ware won't like it. But the idea is to give him an opportunity to be a game-changer with a playoff berth at stake.
Rarely with a phenomenal player such as Ware does less equate to more, but this is one of those times.
Victor Butler struggles against the run and has a groin strain, but he's a guy with a propensity for making big plays.
The Cowboys will need some to slow down Washington's offense.
So this is a good day to get Butler on the field, especially if it helps an injured Ware maximize his ability Sunday night.