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October 30, 2013

Cowboys prepare for worst-case scenario by giving Free and Frederick reps at guard

Mackenzy Bernadeau will step into the starting role at right guard in place of Brian Waters, who has a torn triceps. Since the Cowboys released David Arkin from the active roster Saturday and signed him to the practice squad Monday, they have no true backup guard.

Thus, starting center Travis Frederick and starting right tackle Doug Free took snaps at guard during practice Wednesday. Free said it was the first time since the season has started that he has taken reps at guard.

"Just preparing for if the worst happens," Free said Wednesday. "I don’t really know what’s going to happen, so we’ll just prepare for the worst, and see where it goes."

Free had never played guard until late in the preseason when the Cowboys had a rash of injuries at the position. He started the fourth exhibition game against the Bengals, playing 56 snaps at right guard.

He was abackup plan at guard until the Cowboys signed Waters on Sept. 4.

"Having a little bit of experience there is definitely going to help if it does happen," Free said.

Frederick had snaps at guard in the preseason as well. He could move to guard, with Phil Costa taking over at center. Costa has 20 career starts at center.

The Cowboys also could move Arkin back onto the 53-player roster, though they would have to release a player or move Waters to injured reserve.

-- Charean Williams



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