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Cowboys Anthony Spencer Will Start The Seaon On The 53-Man Rosters

The Cowboys will keep Anthony Spencer on the active roster.

Tom Pennington

The Dallas Cowboys beleaguered defensive line should receive some help, but not for the first game. Team owner Jerry Jones says that injured defensive end Anthony Spencer will be on the 53-man roster, but will not be ready for the opening game.

"I can assure you at this time, as close as we are to Week 1, he won't be ready. But he will be on our active 53-man roster," Jones said. "We wouldn't be doing that if we weren't planning on him being on the field immediately."

"He has progressed at a surprisingly fast pace, and I would say that, not Week 1, but there's a possibility that any time after that he could feel good enough," Jones said. "We feel good about his repairs. He's got that microfracture, and we feel like that has completely grown in the way that that injury heals. It's a question of him feeling good about his cuts."

Because of the long recovery from micro-fracture surgery for Spencer, it had been speculated that he might start the year on IR, keeping him out of the first six games of the season. But lately his progress had reached a point that even he was speculating that he could be available for week one of the season. Turns out that's a little optimistic, but just the fact the Cowboys think he is healthy enough to be ready shortly after that is a boost to the defense.

The Cowboys will be dealing with a lot of situations like this along their defensive line. Jones went on to discuss those problems, including waiting on the decision from the league about Josh Brent.

"We've got a guy like Josh Brent possibly out on the horizon - what's his status, will he count or not count on the 53? We've talked about Terrell McClain, and McClain hasn't had any practice time," Jones said. "We're counting on him, he's going to be a player for us. We've got Lawrence, our draft pick, and we've got to make him available to us when he becomes available.

The point I'm getting is we have really as many as five players that aren't immediately going to be on the field with us at San Francisco, on our defensive front, that we've got to, by hook or crook, figure out ways for them to keep their eligibility so that we can use them early in the season. That's going to be quite a juggling act."

The question is can the defensive line do enough early on to keep the Cowboys competitive in those games. They'll be receiving some help down the line, but they need an extra effort early.

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