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September 30, 2012

Josh Brent impressing Garrett with endurance in extended playing time in place of Jay Ratliff

The Cowboys like the job Josh Brent is doing in place of starting nose tackle Jay Ratliff.

Coach Jason Garrett said he is also impressed by Brent’s ability to manage his endurance.

“He’s done a lot to get his body right over the course of the offseason and through training camp,” Garrett said Saturday before the final practice of the week ahead of Monday night’s game against the Chicago Bears. “He’s gotten an opportunity to play, and he’s shown up. He’s shown that he can play more snaps than he has in the past. In the past, he’s been a guy who just kind of spelled Rat at different times in the ballgame.”

Brent, 6-2, 320, played 22 snaps against the Giants, 41 against Seattle and 26 against Tampa Bay. The third-year player out of Illinois has nine tackles and two quarterback pressures.

“The big thing for all those guys is you want the big guys to be big, but at the same time you want them to find that balance of not being too big and being able to play where they still have their size and their strength and their explosiveness, but they then have some endurance,” Garrett said. “He’s had to play more throughout training camp and throughout the early part of this season. I think he’s understanding that balance.”

-- Carlos Mendez

Twitter @calexmendez

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