IRVING, Texas – Add Bruce Carter to the list of starting linebackers likely to miss a game in the first five weeks of the season.
Groin injuries kept Justin Durant out for two games and Rolando McClain out for a game, and a quad strain is now likely to keep Carter out for the Week 5 matchup against the Texans.
"It's just one of those football injuries, just one of those things," Carter said. "I've just got to get my body back healthy as fast as I can, but not rush it at the same time and hopefully get back on the field quicker."
Carter said he'll "probably be down" this weekend, estimating the timetable for return around 10 to 14 days.
"Hopefully it goes a lot faster than that," Carter said. "I want to get back out there."
The Cowboys hope that as well, particularly after a Saints game Carter feels was one of his best of the year. Before the injury, Carter had a pass deflection that led to an interception for Durant to go along with six tackles. That came one week after Carter recorded a pick-six against the Rams.
"Technique-wise, I thought I did everything I was supposed to," Carter said. "But like I said, when the injury happened, it just kind of messed me up, kind of cut me short."
The quad injury occurred with 14 minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, as Carter attempted to chase down Saints running back Khiry Robinson along the sideline. Carter said it felt like he got shot on the play.
It looked that way too, as he went down immediately with an obvious leg injury.
"I was opening up, about to catch him and then just, 'Pow', out of nowhere," Carter said.
Unlike Morris Claiborne's season-ending injury, Carter hopes this won't keep him out more than a couple weeks. Carter said the doctors told him his body just needs time to heal, and he hopes he'll be fine once he goes through his rehab.
Carter was at the facility at 9 a.m. Tuesday morning to get treatment and was still at the facility taking questions at 4:30 p.m.
"I'm rehabbing all day, pretty much," Carter said. "Ice, elevation, compression and just pretty much the same cycle over and over to get some of the swelling out."
Carter was hopeful the night of the game he'd be all right, as he hasn't had to deal with a quad strain before. He admitted this is a type of injury that can feel worse the next day, and it's obvious that was the case as he still walked with a limp two days later.
"Obviously, you've got to do stuff to get the blood flowing, and that helps with the swelling," Carter said. "So it's going to get sore. But like I said, you've just got to stay on top of it with ice and compression. I'm going to be living in this treatment room for the next 10 days."
It's a setback for the defense and for Carter, who appeared to be adjusting well to the switch to strong side linebacker. According to coaches' film, Carter leads the team with 29 combined tackles and is tied for the team lead in passes defended (four) and interceptions (one). He also has a sack and three quarterback pressures. [embedded_ad]
While a lot of people are surprised by the success of Rod Marinelli's defense early on, Carter's not one of them.
"Sky was the limit for us," Carter said. "Coach Rod, he really preaches about technique and guys just executing their assignment individually. I think on Sunday everybody did their job and all just kind of came together as one. We were able to put on a great performance."