Cowboys DE Ware clarifies: Restructure does not mean pay cut

Posted Monday, Dec. 30, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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DeMarcus Ware said he’s ready to help the Cowboys with the salary cap, but that doesn’t mean he’s willing to take a pay cut.

The veteran defensive end, set to earn $12.25 million next year and count $16 million against the cap, said he did not mean to give the idea after Sunday’s game that he would take a pay cut when he said, “I’ll do what I need to do to help the team.”

He clarified his comments Monday at Valley Ranch.

“The question was with the salary cap stuff and everything, would you be able to maneuver some things in your contract,” Ware said. “I said I’ll do what I need to do to help the team out. It’s nothing new to me. But pay cut and restructure are two different things. You hear what I’m saying? Clar-i-fy.”

Asked if he didn’t say pay cut, Ware said, “No, I didn’t say that. I said I will do whatever I need to do to maneuver some things around to help the team out. I’m for that.”

Ware had only six sacks in 2013, his fewest since his rookie year in 2005. He had sacks in only four games, battling injuries to his elbow, quadriceps, neck and back. He plans to have elbow surgery.

At 32, he said he has not lost a step, but that injuries did get in the way.

“You sit back and think about, ‘What can I do now this off-season to make sure this doesn’t happen again?’ Because I know exactly where I can be and how I can play. Injuries took a toll on me a lot this season.

“But that’s no excuse, because I got out there and played. I’ve got to figure out some way to get healthy this off-season for next season.”

Tired of 8-8

DeMarcus Ware said three years of break-even seasons has become tiresome.

“I mean, you get tired of it,” he said. “After a while, each year, you feel like you lose something. It’s something that you lose from each one of the years, so it’s like, how do you come back from that?”

Tight end Jason Witten said, “Everybody’s disappointed. Every time you experience this, it’s been tough. It’s something I hope I never have to experience again. But, yeah, this one was really tough. To get there three years in a row and come up short, it hurts.”

Glad for return

Jason Witten said he is glad Jason Garrett is returning as head coach.

“It’s very reassuring,” he said. “I think the guys in this locker room would do anything for Coach Garrett. We’re so fortunate to have him. You want to win for each other, but you also want to win for a guy that pours everything into your football team as a head coach and gives you every opportunity.”

Owner Jerry Jones said after Sunday’s game that his plans regarding Garrett have not changed.

Drafting 16th or 17th

The Cowboys will draft 16th or 17th in the first round of the NFL Draft in May. They’ll have a coin-flip tiebreaker with Baltimore for the 16th pick.

The Cowboys had the 18th pick last year and traded it for the 31st pick to take Travis Frederick.

Future signings

The Cowboys signed six practice squad players to their reserve/future list. They are wide receivers Tim Benford and Lance Lewis, guard Ray Dominguez, defensive end Caesar Rayford, linebacker Jonathan Stewart and tackle John Wetzel.

Carlos Mendez, 817-390-7407 Twitter: @calexmendez

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