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September 06, 2013

Cowboys' new DE Rayford says he has DT experience in his background from Arena League and CFL

New defensive end Caesar Rayford, acquired in a trade with Indianapolis this week, said he’s been practicing at defensive tackle this week and is ready to play there if he has to on Sunday.

But it would be nothing new to him.

Sort of.

He did it in the Arena League and the CFL, he said.

“In Arena, you’re kind of like on the guards, so it’s kind of like being inside, because I lined up inside and on the guard,” he said. “And in Canada in the playoffs, I had to play D-tackle, in 2009, against Hamilton and Montreal. So I’ve lined up inside before and tangled in there.”

Rayford, 27, went undrafted in 2008 out of Washington. He spent time in the CFL and the Arena League until being signed by the Indianapolis Colts this year. He led them in sacks in the preseason, making the 53-man roster, but was traded days later to the Cowboys.

“I took it like, ‘Hey, it’s definitely a blessing. Somebody wanted me and somebody gave me the opportunity to play,’ ” he said. “It’s better than going home.”

Rayford has already knows the Giants. He had two sacks with the Colts against them in preseason.

“I kind of have a good game plan because now it’s second helpings,” he said. “So now it’s sharpening up.”

In his press conference Friday, coach Jason Garrett said Rayford "has to be viable" for the Cowboys because of their shortage of players on the defensive line, and that every player should be ready to play both inside and outside.

-- Carlos Mendez

Twitter @calexmendez


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