Cowboys’ backup RB Dunbar out with sprained foot

Posted Monday, Aug. 19, 2013  comments  Print Reprints
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Former North Texas running back Lance Dunbar added injury to insult when it was revealed Monday that he suffered a sprained foot on the same play that he fumbled against the Arizona Cardinals on Saturday.

Dunbar will miss the rest of the preseason and possibly the season opener against the New York Giants on Sept. 8, if not longer.

Running back DeMarco Murray missed six games last season with a sprained foot.

Dunbar has been one of the most impressive players in the preseason and was being counted on as a pass receiver out of the backfield and a speedy change-of-pace back.

“He’s playing really well,” coach Jason Garrett said. “He has done a really nice job for us in all phases as a runner, as a receiver and as a pass protector. He’s showing up on special teams and hopefully this is just a mild setback for him.”

In other injury news, the Cowboys waived three players on Monday: linebacker Alex Albright, defensive tackle Travis Chappelear and defensive end Toby Jackson. Albright will have season-ending back surgery and be put on the injured reserve list after he clears waivers.

Still not practicing are receiver Cole Beasley (foot), guard Ryan Cook (back), guard Nate Livings (knee), guard Ron Leary (knee), defensive tackle Jay Ratliff (hamstring), cornerback Morris Claiborne (knee), safety Eric Frampton (hamstring), safety Matt Johnson (ankle/foot), defensive tackle Sean Lissemore (groin), linebacker Ernie Sims (groin), and safety J.J. Wilcox (personal).

Guards Kevin Kowalski (knee) and Ray Dominguez (shoulder) returned to practice.

Back in the heat

The Cowboys returned to the practice field Monday and returned to the Texas heat for the first time since mini-camp in June after spending the past five weeks of training camp in the cool temperatures of Oxnard, Calif.

“We did need a little bit of cloud cover, but it was fine” safety Will Allen said after practice. “We need the heat and we need to work and practice in the heat and get us in better shape. ... It’s a grind. You just got to do it, adapt to it, understand it and thrive in it.”

The Cowboys have moved practices to 8 a.m. to try to manage the heat and hopefully be off the field before it gets too hot.

But there is no escaping the heat and the players are ready to deal with it.

“There’s no challenge at all,” receiver Dez Bryant said. “No matter where you’re at, if you love the game, you’ll practice football wherever. I think the approach we came with this morning was outstanding. There was no sluggishness.”

Williams’ fault

Cowboys rookie receiver Terrance Williams acknowledged he ran the wrong route on the overthrown ball from quarterback Tony Romo in the first quarter against the Cardinals.

“It was just something that he pointed the safety out,” Williams said. “I was too focused on the play that he called instead of doing the check down.”

That being said, the Cowboys are not unhappy with the route Williams ran. He beat his man off the ball and was wide open.

It’s a play that Jason Garrett said still should have resulted in a completion if Romo didn’t overthrow the ball.

Overall, Garrett said the Cowboys were pleased with Williams’ performance, his first of the preseason after missing the first two games with a concussion.

“He played close to 25 snaps and did some good things,” Garrett said. “He looked comfortable to me. I thought he did some things with his releases and the routes down the field that were very positive. Didn’t seem like he was in awe of the situation at all.”

Clarence E. Hill Jr., 817-390-7760 Twitter: @clarencehilljr

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