IRVING, Texas – The Cowboys were missing a pair of receivers on the practice field Wednesday at Valley Ranch.
Most notable, wide receiver Miles Austin was held out of drills with a hamstring injury he sustained last Sunday against the Rams in the third quarter. Austin’s injury is not believed to be as serious as the ones he suffered two years ago that kept him out of three games each.
However, as both head coach Jason Garrett and owner Jerry Jones stated Wednesday, the Cowboys will be overly cautious with Austin, who has had a history of hamstring injuries throughout his career.
The Cowboys were also without Dwayne Harris, who was on the stationary bike in the weight room during the team practice. Harris suffered a hip pointer injury early in Sunday’s win over the Rams but still managed to return to the game. He caught a touchdown pass from Tony Romo in the fourth quarter.
With Harris and Austin both missing Wednesday, the Cowboys used Dez Bryant and Terrance Williams with the first-team offense and Cole Beasley in the slot. The only other receivers on the field are practice squad members Tim Benford and Jamar Newsome.
The Cowboys might be ready to see veteran Brian Waters start his first game Sunday. The 13-year pro took first-team reps early in Wednesday’s practice ahead of Mackenzy Bernadeau, who has started the first three games at right guard.
However, Waters starting doesn’t exactly rule out the platoon system the Cowboys have used with Waters and Bernadeau at right guard. Waters has rotated in from the backup spot each of the last two games.
Last week, Bernadeau even flipped to left guard when Ron Leary left the game momentarily with an injury, but later returned to action. Leary was on the field Wednesday.
Ernie Sims did not seem to be limited in his practice reps on Wednesday after missing the last two games with a groin injury. Sims spent all of last week’s practices in uniform, but working with the strength coaches. On Wednesday, he was in the middle of all linebacker drills.
Sims is considered the first backup to outside backers Bruce Carter and Justin Durant.
The groin injury is a re-aggravation of a training camp injury that kept him out of action the last three preseason games.