Dallas Cowboys

Josh Brent hope calf improves enough for him to play

Josh Brent was expected to play Sunday, but his calf still was tight. So the Cowboys deactivated the defensive tackle for the fifth time this season.

“It was just a decision by the medical staff that it wasn’t in the best interest for me or the team to be out there,” Brent said Tuesday.

He played only one game – 22 snaps against the Chicago Bears – after returning from a 10-game suspension. Coach Jason Garrett, though, hopes Brent can help the Cowboys in the playoffs despite his lack of playing time during the regular season.

“It’ll be the same this week,” Brent said. “Go out there and whatever the medical staff feels is best, obviously that’s going to be the final decision.”

Defensive end Kenneth Boatright was the recipient of Brent’s deactivation, getting to play his first game. Boatright, who was called up from the practice squad on Dec. 13, played 16 snaps against the Redskins and had two tackles.

“We found out we were going to play Boatright once he got to the stadium,” Garrett said. “You’ve always got to be ready. You’ve always got to take advantage of your chances during the week to get yourself prepared to play on Sunday. You have to put in your mind that whatever the reason that guy can’t play in the game, I’m in and I’ve got the whole game. Am I ready for that? That’s how you got to come to work every day.”