Morris Claiborne wants to play this week. He wants to come back next season, too.
But he admits he doesn’t know whether either will happen.
Claiborne missed two games with a hamstring injury, returned for two games and has missed the past two games with the same injury. He said “no matter what the record looks like” he wants to play Sunday in what amounts to a meaningless game.
“There’s a good chance of [playing] as of now,” Claiborne said Tuesday. “It’s just taking it day by day in practice this week to see how I feel. If I can be out there, I’m going to be out there.”
Claiborne has missed 23 of a possible 63 games in his four-year career. Ten of those missed games were because of his hamstrings, including six in 2013.
“Yeah, I mean, when you’re fast like me….,” Claiborne said, laughing. “Nah, I’m just joking. It’s just one of those things. You do a lot of work to try to prevent it, but when it happens, it just happens. That was like the last thing I would think about was: What if I would mess up my hamstring? I would think it would be my knees or something before my hamstring. It’s just one of those things, and I’ve got to keep taking it day by day and seeing how I feel through the week. If I can go, I’m going to go.”
Claiborne did individual drills Thursday and then sat out Friday. He said the hamstring feels better this week, and he plans on doing at least individual drills Wednesday.
Claiborne, the sixth overall pick in 2012, has made 42 tackles, with nine pass breakups this season. He has only three career interceptions, with his most recent one coming against the Rams in Week 3 of 2014.
If Claiborne plays, it might be his final home game in a Cowboys uniform. He becomes a free agent after the season.
But Claiborne said he would “rather be here” than get a fresh start somewhere else.
“I’m just going to leave it to when it’s time to deal with that,” Claiborne said of his future. “There’s no sense in me stressing over it and worrying myself about it. There are things you can’t handle. Just let it roll how we’re going and hope for the best. I know it’s a business at the end of the day. Whatever happens I’ve just got to go with it and make myself a better player and a better person from it and grow from whatever decision is made.”