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With Harris Likely Out, Cowboys Add Special Teams Vet

Posted Dec 18, 2013


IRVING, Texas – The Cowboys need all the confidence they can get this week as they head to Washington in a game they need to win to likely keep their season alive.

And while they’ve already defeated the Redskins 31-16 back in mid-October, the Cowboys probably won’t have the star of that game this week.

Dwayne Harris has been ailing with a nagging hamstring injury that has forced him out of two of the last three games. He’ll likely miss this week’s game in Washington as well and with that, he might not be back for the rest of the regular season.

So in an attempt to add a veteran presence who can at least try to fill in for the do-it-all Harris, the Cowboys have signed veteran Michael Spurlock, who reunites once again with special teams coach Rich Bisaccia.

Spurlock has played for Bisaccia in both Tampa Bay and San Diego, although he played nine games in Detroit this year.

Like Harris, Spurlock has experience as a punt returner, kick returner and also covers kicks. For his career, he has 80 punt returns for a 9.0 yard average and 104 kickoff returns, averaging 24.5 yards a return. He has five career touchdowns returns on punts (two) and kickoffs (three).

Losing Harris will be a big blow for the Cowboys. Harris ranks sixth in the NFL with a 30.5 kick return average. And his 14.0 yard punt return average would rank second in the league if he had enough returns to qualify.

Against the Redskins back in October, Harris was named NFC Special Teams Player of the Week when he returned a punt 86 yards for a touchdown and later had a 90-yard kickoff return that led to another touchdown.

Spurlock is one of three players to be signed to the roster, along with linebacker Orie Lemon, who was with the team but cut last week to make room for Edgar Jones. The Cowboys are also expected to add defensive tackle Frank Kearse, who was on Tennessee’s practice squad but has played six games in his career with the Panthers.

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