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October 19, 2011

Holland has slimmed down, happy to be back

Montrae Holland made a better first impression in his second chance. Holland worked out for the Cowboys on Tuesday, 10 pounds lighter than when he was released in September. Dallas signed him, and he could start Sunday's game against the Rams.

"Don’t burn any bridges," Holland said, laughing. "It’s a business. it’s nothing personal. So they went another direction. All you can do is try to take your business elsewhere. If they call back, all you can do is come back with a smile.

"I'm not a guy that holds any grudges. I just come back, try to see what I can do to help the team."

Holland was projected as the starting right guard after the Cowboys released Leonard Davis before training camp. But Holland reported at 340, 14 pounds heavier than he had been in 2010. He injured his back on the ninth day in camp and then hurt his hamstring. Holland returned for the final preseason game but was released in the Cowboys' final cutdown.

After being released, Holland worked out with former NFL player LeCharles Bentley, who works with offensive linemen at his O-Line Academy in Cleveland. He lost close to 10 pounds.

"I was a little heavier [in training camp], but it was nothing I couldn’t play with," Holland said. "I've been heavier. It's just the way it is, I guess. ...The thing I did was took it as an opportunity to try to change that, so I went and worked and got lighter."

The Cowboys placed rookie left guard Bill Nagy on injured reserve this week after he broke an ankle against the Patriots last week. Right guard Kyle Kosier (foot) was limited in practice Wednesday, and left guard Derrick Dockery is still out rehabbing a broken tibia and sprained MCL. So the Cowboys will need Holland, who has made 50 starts, including two last season for Dallas.

"Second chances are great," Holland said. "That’s all I can say. It’s a blessing. I’m happy to be back."

-- Charean Williams






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