- Tim MacMahon, ESPN Staff Writer
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IRVING, Texas – Jerry Jones has repeatedly said that kickoff specialist David Buehler’s roster spot is safe.
Buehler, who missed the last two games with a groin injury, is smart enough to know that doesn’t guarantee anything.
"That's re-assuring, but you can't get complacent,” said Buehler, who expects to kick again next week. “You've got to work hard. … I've got to get out there and compete against him and get my job back.”
Kickoffs haven’t been a problem with rookie Dan Bailey handling those duties the last two weeks. Coach Jason Garrett indicated he believes keeping only one kicker – like every other team in the NFL – is an idea that merits discussion at Valley Ranch.
“He’s certainly done a nice job, there’s no question about that,” Garrett said when asked about Bailey’s kickoffs. “I think kicking in our stadium certainly helps him in that regard. But he’s kicked off well. To have the number of touchbacks he’s had and also have the location on the ones that weren’t touchbacks, it’s been very good.
“We’ll continue to evaluate it. David’s been a big part of team. We really think it’s an asset to have a guy who can kick the ball through the end zone. He’s been able to do that for us, so we’ll see how he is and how healthy he can get in the next week or so. Hopefully he’ll be back and we’ll make that next decision.”
Jones has pointed out that Buehler’s leg strength would be valuable in outdoor games later in the season. The question: Is it valuable enough to continue to commit a roster spot to a kickoff specialist?
The answer to that question could come after Week 6, when the Cowboys will have to create a roster spot to bring second-round pick Bruce Carter off the physically unable to perform list.