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October 24, 2012

Cowboys sign Ernie Sims, Charlie Peprah

The Cowboys will be without linebacker Sean Lee and punter Chris Jones the rest of the season. Both were placed on season-ending injured reserve Wednesday.

Dallas signed linebacker Ernie Sims, the ninth overall pick of the Lions in 2006, and safety Charlie Peprah. Peprah originally was a fifth-round pick of the Giants in 2006.

Sims will provide depth at inside linebacker. Dan Connor will replace Lee as the starter, and Bruce Carter will handle the defensive communication. But Orie Lemon is the only true backup inside linebacker behind them. Alex Albright has worked at inside linebacker in practice and in the preseason, but he has played only outside linebacker in the regular season.

“He’s been more of a WILL in a 4-3 type defense, where he’s been protected by a 3-technique," Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. "You can do that in a 3-4 defense. We do that a lot in our 3-4 defense. He’s a guy who is not real big but watch him play. Watch him play in college. Watch him play in the NFL. He plays with a great motor, a great demeanor. He runs to the football and makes a lot of plays. So we’re excited to have the opportunity to get him.”

Sims had 32 tackles in 13 games, including four starts, with the Colts last season. He was with the Eagles in 2010 when he started 15 games and had 55 tackles and two sacks.

Peprah, who has 26 career starts, will provide depth at safety. He had off-season knee surgery and was released by the Packers before training camp after failing a physical. The Cowboys worked him out earlier this month.

"He did a really good job for Green Bay as a safety and really helping them absorb injuries in the past and being a starter," Garrett said. "He’s a smart football player. He’s a good athlete, has good awareness. But that knee thing has been a factor for him in the past. We worked him out a couple of weeks ago, and he seems good. We got pretty good clearance from our medical staff on him."

-- Charean Williams

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