Dallas Cowboys look at 3 punters, 6 safeties during auditions
10/12/2012 11:17 PM
04/18/2013 7:29 PM
IRVING -- Three punters and six safeties were among 16 players who worked out for the Dallas Cowboys on Friday in effort to manage injuries for Sunday's game against Baltimore and look at future options, owner Jerry Jones said.
With punters Brian Moorman (groin) and Chris Jones (knee) hobbled by injuries, the Cowboys might add a punter for Sunday's game.
Moorman is likely out, but Jones practiced on Friday.
The Cowboys are trying to determine if Jones can move well enough to tackle as well as punt before deciding to sign another punter for the game.
The punters they worked out were veterans Daniel Sepulveda, Chas Henry and T.J. Conley.
The other players were quarterback Nick Stephens (Flower Mound, Tarleton State), receiver Johnathan Haggerty (Dallas Lincoln), guard Robert Griffin (Euless Trinity, Baylor), tight end Fendi Onobun, safety Charlie Peprah (Plano East), safety Gerald Alexander, safety Larry Asante, safety Mikail Baker (Dallas Skykine, Baylor), safety Vince Agnew, safety Rod Issac, cornerback Reggie Jones, cornerback Morgan Trent and cornerback Kevin Thomas.
"This is a good time in the season to get on some of these potential guys and see who might have some size and length we could work with, whether it be for the practice squad or the roster, and maybe try to develop us a defensive back," Jones said.
The Cowboys are compromised at safety because of the season-ending injury to strong safety Barry Church.
Danny McCray has done a solid job filling in, but fourth-round pick Matt Johnson has yet to play this season because of lingering hamstring issues.
The Cowboys have used cornerbacks Brandon Carr and Mike Jenkins at safety in sub packages.
Peprah is a six-year veteran who played the past five years with Green Bay, starting 14 games last season. Asante played the past two years for Tampa Bay.
Linebacker Anthony Spencer practiced on a limited basis on Friday as he continues to struggle with a strained pectoral muscle.
He is questionable for Sunday. However, he will likely be held out as the Cowboys will continue to be cautious to avoid the injury becoming season-ending.
Spencer has not played since the Tampa Bay game three weeks ago. He missed the Chicago game before last week's bye.
"That's a longer injury than people realize," defensive coordinator Rob Ryan said. "It's up to a six-week injury, I've heard, or even longer."
Look for Victor Butler and Alex Albright to alternate in his place against the Ravens. Albright will likely start in the regular defense, with Butler handling pass rush duties.
This will be Albright's first game back after missing the past two games with a neck strain.
What effect has the Cowboys' troubled offense had on the defense? Rob Ryan said the situation has not put any undue pressure on his unit to perform because the offense is not as bad the numbers indicate.
"The Cowboys' offense isn't struggling," Ryan said. "Go coach for Oakland or Cleveland when you can't get a first down. That is struggling. We are moving the football at will on people.
"We have had a couple of turnovers. That is it. We don't have to do anything. I have been in rooms where it was all on the defense or you're in trouble, and even if you are great you are still in trouble."
Clarence E. Hill Jr.
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