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Dallas Cowboys News & Notes: Pro Bowlers, Roster Moves, Getting Ready For Chicago

Latest Dallas Cowboys headlines: The Cowboys add a tight end and running back to their practice squad, three Cowboys players are showing up in the Pro Bowl voting, and the Bears have issues on defense.

Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Hatcher, Lee, Church rank second in Pro Bowl voting at their positions - Charean Williams, Star-Telegram.
In our last update on the Pro Bowl balloting Jason Hatcher and Sean Lee already ranked second at their positions, but Charean Williams writes that Barry Church is now also ranked second, meaning he has surpassed the 49ers' Eric Reid for the second spot.

Tony Romo’s QB rating last four Decembers doesn’t jive with Cowboys’ poor record - David Moore, DMN
BTB readers have known it for a while now, others are picking up on it:

Romo actually has some pretty good numbers in December. Green Bay’s Aaron Rodgers is the only other quarterback with a higher December rating the last four seasons.

Garrett says rookie RB Randle has played better than his numbers say, and Cowboys still confident in him - Carlos Mendez, Star-Telegram
With Lance Dunbar out, Randle is the next man up and the Cowboys are confident in their rookie running back.

"He hasn’t played perfect football. But we have a lot of confidence in him," Garrett said. "He’s a big guy. He runs downhill. He’s got good vision. He’s tough. And he’s done a good job with the football. If he has an opportunity to play, we expect good things from him."

Dallas Cowboys' Jason Hatcher feeling better with rest - Todd Archer, ESPN Dallas
Hatcher has been battling a stinger for a while now, and said after the Oakland game that he felt like he was playing with one arm. The extra rest afforded by the mini-break after the Raiders game was a welcome respite for Hatcher.

"It’s getting better each game I play," Hatcher said. "I just got to continue to rest it and not do nothing crazy in practice to damage the nerve again and set it back. The trainers and the coaching staff do a great job of letting me go through practice not too physical and just having me rest for the games. I’m just going to continue with that game plan they have for me. It’s working."

Dallas Cowboys with options at strongside linebacker - Todd Archer, ESPN Dallas
Archer writes that Garrett has not been afraid to make changes to his starting lineup this season. And another change may be looming as the Cowboys look to possibly start Kyle Wilber at strongside linebacker.

"He’s just been productive," Garrett said. "He’s been around the ball. He’s made tackles. He’s made tackles for losses. He’s made plays on the ball, fumble recoveries, caused fumbles. It’s just a really good thing. We thought he was a good football player coming out of school, [and] that’s why we drafted him in the fourth round. The scheme that we were playing, we felt like he was best suited to play the outside linebacker, essentially a rush linebacker, in a 3-4 scheme. I think he probably benefitted from some of the times that he’s dropped in that 3-4 scheme and he draws from some of that experience playing as an off-the-ball linebacker. But you literally saw him get better diagnosing things over the last couple weeks. Sometimes he was a little hesitant at the beginning, but I think he was seeing schemes better and pulling the trigger more quickly and just making more plays – a real positive thing for our team."

Scouting Report: New Fullback Signee Tyler Clutts - Bryan Broaddus,
Broaddus shares his impression of the newest Cowboys signing after watching four Miami regular season games from this year.

Why a fullback doesn't make sense for Cowboys - Todd Archer, ESPN Dallas
Archer argues that the Cowboys don't really run a power scheme that would benefit from a powerful lead blocker, and wonders whether the Cowboys' storied history with fullbacks may have been a driver in the decision to sign Clutts. Archer makes some good points but it's interesting that a fullback has caused the most buzz of all the recent signings among both the media and fans alike.

Cowboys thriving on play of lineman Tyron Smith - Clarence Hill, Star-Telegram
Jason Garrett says the third-year tackle is playing at Pro Bowl level and that he's a "fantastic player" who's a positive influence on his fellow linemen:

"Tyron plays well technically," Garrett said. "Some of the things that separate him are the ability to just play with the physical nature, both as a pass protector and as a run blocker. That has a positive impact on Ron and the other guys."

Cowboys Round Out 8-Man Practice Squad; Sign RB, TE - Nick Eatman,
More Roster moves at Valley Ranch. Tight end Jameson Konz was a pre-draft small school prospect who garnered some interest among Cowboys fans in 2010, RB George Winn was last active on the Steelers and raiders practice squads.

December, cold weather, the Chicago Bears and Monday night games have all been a problem for Tony Romo - Jon Machota, DMN
Four negatives make a positive, no?

Broaddus: Bears Defense Struggling Without Briggs, Tillman -
Broaddus goes through the list of injured Bears players and surmises that the current incarnation of the Bears defense is not what we've become used to from the Bears over the years.

Pleased to Meet You: Week 14, Dallas Cowboys - Windy City Gridiron
Bears fans preview the upcoming game against the Cowboys and are worried about DeMarco Murray.

If DeMarco Murray gets 20 touches, the Cowboys will probably get 150 yards on the ground. Giving up 200-plus yards on the ground the last two weeks isn't a good feeling as a Bears fan.

Coach Killers, Week 13: The Bears' D will be their downfall -
Ryan Wilson writes that the Bears run defense resembles hot garbage.

The Bears just don't have the players to slow up a good running game. Yes, losing Henry Melton and Lance Briggs hurts, but the Packers would like a word on what it means to be without key players. Put another way: Every team in the league deals with injuries. Some manage and make the playoffs. Others struggle, and spend January and February on the couch watching football with the rest of us.

Giants taking too much credit for not quitting after 0-6 start - New York Post
Paul Schwartz takes it to the Giants in a big way, ripping their bravado and arguing that the Giants can't simply pretend like they're a different team now than they were through the first six games.

Relevance has left the building, and home games against the surging Seahawks then the brutal Redskins to end the season will feature plenty of empty seats, which will be like daggers thrust into the eyes of co-owner John Mara.

That's a good thing, right? Schwartz continues:

This will be four times in the past five seasons the Giants failed to make the playoffs, unquestionably a trend, and this effort is far and away the worst of all.

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