Dan Bailey steps up at punter

October, 31, 2011
10/31/11
12:31
AM ET
PHILADELPHIA -- When punter Mat McBriar went down with nerve damage in his left (non-kicking) foot, the Cowboys turned to field goal kicker Dan Bailey to take over.

Bailey, a rookie, has been in this situation before. He took over as the punter in his senior season at Oklahoma State when its punter was injured.

Bailey punted twice Sunday night for a net average of 37 yards. His longest punt was for 41 yards. Bailey said he didn't take a single punt with the special teams unit in practice, but was prepared in case something happened to McBriar.

"It was a change of pace, but it is what it is. You just have to be ready sometimes," Bailey said. "It was good go out there and try to help the team win. The main thing is know your role, don't try and go out there and mirror an NFL punter. I'm not that caliber of punter; just go out there and do the best you can and try to get a good ball or at least a good direction so they don't try and return it."

This was also the first time Bailey hadn't attempted a field goal this season. He has made 16 consecutive field goal attempts.
Calvin Watkins joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He's covered the Cowboys since 2006 and also has covered colleges, boxing and high school sports.

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