Cowboys owner Jerry Jones feels good about the last six weeks of the season. It has nothing to do with the fact that the Cowboys play only two teams that currently have winning records. It has everything to do with the players the Cowboys return from injury.
"I’m excited about it, I really am, about the injured players that we have back," Jones said Tuesday on his weekly radio show on KRLD-FM 105.3. "They’ll make an impact. Obviously, we’ve got to adjust the fact that some of them may need to get in a little better football shape. I’d like to say we’ve got to watch them as far as their numbers of reps in the ball game, but I don’t know that we’ve got that kind of luxury as far as our depth is concerned, especially there on the defense.
"It’s good to have those players back. There’s no doubt in my mind we’ll be better."
Defensive end DeMarcus Ware, who missed three games with a quad injury, played 52 of 84 snaps against the Saints. He tweaked the injury in that game, on a sack of Drew Brees, and missed practice Monday. But Jones expressed confidence that Ware will play Sunday against the Giants.
"I think he’s real pleased with how he made it through the game, how he performed in the game against New Orleans," Jones said. "That was a good outing for him, because we didn’t have any major setback. With that in mind, he’s feeling good."
Jones also said the return of cornerback Morris Claiborne, who missed two games with a hamstring injury, will help. The Cowboys benched rookie B.W. Webb, who had to fill in for Claiborne, against the Saints. Claiborne also missed practice Monday, spending time rehabbing.
"I think Mo’s going to be playing," Jones said. "That’s relative to what we’re going to be doing against the Giants. That’s big, because the more of those corners we can have out there the more we can get Eli [Manning] a little concerned about what we’re doing, what he’s throwing against. Of course, the best thing to do against Eli is turn that DeMarcus Ware loose and let him get a little extra pressure from where we’ve been."
After missing the past three games, receiver Miles Austin is practicing again. His gimpy hamstring has limited him to five games this season, and he has not had a catch since Week 3.
"He had a good practice out there Monday," Jones said. "I think he was actually ready to go – I don’t think; I know – he was ready to go against New Orleans, and he probably could have gone earlier. But we were wanting to be conservative on that and to the end that it looks this way to have him for this next six ball games -- and I’m really probably getting ahead of myself because of the history we’ve had there recently with his hamstring. But to have him back out there, he’s our best route runner. He’ll make a difference on what we’re doing offensively."
-- Charean Williams