The Cowboys, who still do not have an indoor practice facility at Valley Ranch after theirs collapsed in 2009, moved their Thursday practice to Highland Park High School because of heavy winds.
Under normal circumstances, the Cowboys would simply have moved practices from Valley Ranch to Cowboys Stadium, but Jerryworld was hosting state high school football playoff games, so the Cowboys moved to Highland Park - an indoor facility that Aaron Rodgers once said was better than half of the NFL's practice setups.
An additional reason for the move, according to ESPN Dallas, was that the Cowboys wanted to focus more on passing and third-down situations, for which an indoor environment would be more conducive. In injury news, DeMarco Murray (foot) stuck to the same routine as the last two weeks, sitting out Wednesday's practice and taking part on Thursday on a limited basis. Dez Bryant (finger) and DeMarcus Ware (elbow) were also limited in practice yesterday. However, all three are expected to play on Sunday against the Saints.
Ernie Sims (concussion) took part in his first practice of the week, albeit in a limited fashion. Sims had suffered a concussion against the Steelers and while he passed his first concussion test on Thursday, he has to pass another one today to be fully cleared. Morris Claiborne (concussion) has passed every mandated concussion test and was a full participant in practice yesterday. He has been cleared to play on Sunday.
Felix Jones (knee) and Charlie Peprah (foot) were both full participants in practice. And while Peprah may have the lowest name recognition on the injury list, his return on Sunday gives the Cowboys something they haven't had in a long time: options at safety.
Peprah was signed in mid-season and had played 117 snaps in three games from week 10-12, mostly in the Cowboys' nickel and dime packages, before suffering a foot injury. Without Peprah, the Cowboys had to mix and match their already depleted safeties in the sub packages next to Gerald Sensabaugh, alternatively throwing in Danny McCray and Eric Frampton, and even mixing in a corner on occasion.
With both Morris Claiborne and Charlie Peprah ready to go for Sunday, the Cowboys solidify their secondary just in time to face the Saints passing game.
Jay Ratliff is out for the season after undergoing surgery on a sports hernia last week.
Official Injury Report (via the NFL Media department) from Thursday's practice:
||CB Morris Claiborne (concussion), RB Felix Jones (knee), S Charlie Peprah (foot)|
|Limited Participation||WR Dez Bryant (finger), RB DeMarco Murray (foot), LB Ernie Sims (concussion), LB DeMarcus Ware (elbow)|
|No participation||DT Jay Ratliff (groin)|
||TE Jimmy Graham (wrist)|
||RB Chris Ivory (hamstring), CB Patrick Robinson (groin), T Zach Strief (ankle), RB Pierre Thomas (knee)|
||RB Jed Collins (knee, toe)|