SAN ANTONIO -- Less than a week ago, the Dallas Cowboys were on the verge of possibly trading or releasing cornerback Terence Newman as they pursued Pro Bowler Nnamdi Asomugha in free agency.
The Cowboys lost Asomugha to the Eagles, and now they probably have lost Newman for the preseason.
The eight-year veteran said he suffered a groin pull in practice at training camp on Wednesday and will return for the Sept. 11 season opener against the New York Jets, putting him out for the rest of the preseason.
However, the Cowboys shored up their safety position late Wednesday when they came to terms with Abe Elam on a one-year, $2.5 million deal. Elam had been a target because he played the last two years under new coordinator Rob Ryan in Cleveland.
Elam, who played with the Cowboys in 2006, already knows the scheme. He will play free safety alongside strong safety Gerald Sensabaugh, who signed a free-agent deal to rejoin the Cowboys on Tuesday.
Newman announced the news of his injury with this tweet: "A little groin pull and be back for the jets! The man upstairs has my back and I have his. Thanks for the encouragement."
Newman was taken off the practice field and to the locker room after falling during a pass coverage play Wednesday afternoon.
The Cowboys have yet to comment about the seriousness of the injury, but a team source said late Wednesday he hopes Newman will be back in time for the season opener.
Vice president Stephen Jones said after practice they would know more once Newman underwent an MRI exam.
Garrett OK with Ryan
Coach Jason Garrett heard what defensive coordinator Rob Ryan supposedly said about the Philadelphia Eagles with his "all-hype" team comments and promise to kick them on the field.
Rather than admonish Ryan for providing bulletin-board material, Garrett said he knew what he was getting when he hired the bombastic Ryan to be his coordinator.
"Different people have different personalities," Garrett said. "We bring people here because of who they are. It's well thought out. Then we go forward. We like confidence. We have to do it on the field."
Said linebacker Bradie James: "It's our job to go out there and execute and make sure that he doesn't look like a fool."
Gerald Sensabaugh showed up at the Alamodome ready to pick up where he left off last year.
Never mind that he didn't get what he wanted in free agency -- a lucrative multiyear deal -- and had to come back to the Cowboys on his third consecutive one-year deal.
"There were a couple of deals out there, but it really wasn't quite what I was looking for, so I just decided to chance it once again on a one-year deal," Sensabaugh said. "I always wanted to come to Dallas anyway, so it works out for the best. "
Sensabaugh said he hopes to get on the field today with the rest of the free-agent signees. They were barred from practicing until the new collective bargaining agreement was ratified and the NFL began its league year. That is supposed to be today.
Clarence E. Hill Jr.