Friday, September 6, 2013
All hands on deck for Dallas defensive line
By Todd Archer
IRVING, Texas -- All available defensive linemen will be active for the Dallas Cowboys for Sunday’s game against the New York Giants, regardless of position.
With Ben Bass looking at a monthlong absence because of a dislocated left shoulder suffered in Thursday’s practice, Landon Cohen is the Cowboys' only true backup defensive tackle behind Jason Hatcher and Nick Hayden. Caesar Rayford was playing outside linebacker for the Indianapolis Colts last week but was at defensive end on Wednesday, a day after the Cowboys got him in a trade.
“He’s got to be viable for us at some point in this ballgame,” coach Jason Garrett said. “Guys are going to have to play more, and some guys might have to play in a position they haven’t played as much as you’d like to have them play, but that’s just part of the deal.”
Anthony Spencer has not practiced since having knee surgery on July 25, but on Friday morning Garrett would not rule him out.
“We’ll just see what he does out here today and over the next couple of days to see what his availability is,” Garrett said.
Garrett did not rule out the possibility of adding a defensive tackle, like Jeris Pendleton, who was with the Cowboys in training camp, but acknowledged it is late in the week to make a move. Garrett said that depending on the damage Bass suffered, he could miss three days to “a couple [or] three weeks or at least that, so we’ll see.”
The defensive line has been beset by injuries from the first day of camp when Tyrone Crawford was lost for the season with a torn Achilles. Jay Ratliff (sports hernia) is on the physically unable to perform (PUP) list and will miss at least the first six weeks.
“The really good teams are able to absorb injuries,” Garrett said.