The Cowboys are being cautious with defensive end Jason Hatcher, who injured his calf in the second quarter against the Redskins. He will miss his third consecutive game, sitting out this week's contest against the Rams.
"If it would have been up to me, I would have been out there [against the Patriots], but you've got to just believe in the trainers and what they say," Hatcher said Wednesday. "That’s one of those things they feel like we should give it one more week, so I can go out there and help my team."
Hatcher said he will be close to 100 percent when he returns next week.
"It feels great," Hatcher said. "I'm almost back. I would say when I get back to practice, I’ll be 85, 90 percent. That’s all you can ask for right now. Some of the stuff I’m going to have to work through. That’s with any injury when you come back. You’ve got to work through the little nicks and knacks until you get back to where it’s supposed to be."
Hatcher had nine tackles, two sacks and two quarterback pressures in three games. Marcus Spears has started the past two games at right end. He had no stats against the Lions but had five tackles and a sack against the Patriots.
-- Charean Williams