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December 14, 2012

Garrett envisions immediate impact from DT Schaefering

Cowboys defensive tackle Brian Schaefering, signed Wednesday to provide depth in the wake of Jay Ratliff’s surgery for a sports hernia, has shown enough in practice that he could be active for Sunday’s game.

“Absolutely, he can be active. He’s practiced well the last couple of days,” coach Jason Garrett said of Schaefering, who played for Cowboys’ defensive coordinator Rob Ryan at Cleveland and understands Ryan’s scheme. “He’s been a good player in this scheme. He has been a guy that was on our radar screen this year if something were to happen. We have had some injuries in the defensive line and … we just needed to have more bodies in. To get a veteran player like that, who knows our scheme, a tough guy who understands what to do in a short period of time, I thought he was a good answer for us.”

Schaefering, a fifth-year pro who has 10 starts in his NFL career, offers depth to a line that will be without Ratliff, a Pro Bowler, and Josh Brent, who was placed Wednesday on the reserve/non-football illness list, effectively ending his season. Brent faces a charge of intoxication manslaughter in last week’s car accident that killed linebacker Jerry Brown, a member of the Cowboys’ practice squad.

_ Jimmy Burch

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Garrett has no choice. Schaefering has to play. They have no one else on the bench.

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