- Todd Archer, ESPN Staff Writer
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IRVING, Texas – A part of Monday’s practice focused on the New York Giants, the Cowboys’ opponent to open the regular season on Sept. 5, but it’s too soon to think of the Giants for a lot of players.
They need to think about Wednesday’s opponent in the preseason finale, the Miami Dolphins, as a last chance to make the 53-man roster.
The Cowboys will have 18 roster moves to make by Friday and can invite eight players back to the practice squad.
A year ago, Mario Butler sweated out the final cut only to be released and brought back to the practice squad, where he spent the whole season.
“It’s a ton different, especially the speed of the game,” Butler said. “Just going through it for a full year you know what to expect. That gives me a lot of confidence to play freely and not thinking about everything.”
Butler has proven to be versatile by playing cornerback, nickel and safety, which gives him an edge in the race for one of the final roster spots. After the San Diego game, owner and general manager Jerry Jones said Butler is playing so well that it would be hard for the team to cut him.
The Cowboys will have a short walkthrough Tuesday with the team’s kickoff luncheon in the morning at Cowboys Stadium.
“I think you can (get ready for Miami with such a short turnaround) by going in watching film, getting extra stuff put on the iPad to get ready for the Dolphins,” Butler said. “Even though all of the starters’ focus is on the New York Giants, this is my biggest game coming up for the Dolphins. I’ve got to focus on that.”