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Cowboys Optimistic On Bryant's Back Injury; Hatcher Update


IRVING, Texas – On the Cowboys' official injury report they put out Friday afternoon, Dez Bryant is listed as probable to play Sunday in New Orleans.

According to the wide receiver, his unofficial status, although it came from his own mouth, sounds more definite.

"I'm playing," Bryant said as reporters were walking out of the locker room Friday during the one-hour media session. "That's all ya'll need to know. I'm feeling good and I'm playing."

Bryant was listed as limited in Friday's practice, but apparently did as much as the Cowboys' coaching staff would allow him to do. Bryant's back injury has been somewhat of a nagging problem this year, and even dating back to last season when he suffered a back injury in the season finale in Washington. Bryant could barely walk and missed most of the fourth quarter and eventually had to leave the stadium in a wheelchair.  

On Friday, Cowboys vice president Stephen Jones told reporters Bryant did not have a disk-related injury in his back and said it was more about tightness in his muscle. Jones even said "I think we're going to be fine" as he walked out to the practice field.

Bryant has had some tightness in his back throughout the season but has yet to miss a game because of it. [embedded_ad]

Game-Time for Hatch

Jason Hatcher has yet to miss a game this year, but a neck/stinger injury could change that streak this weekend.

Hatcher hasn't practiced much this week, although he was limited in Friday's session at Valley Ranch.

"If I can play, I will," Hatcher said. "It's really important to me to play in this game. I really don't know what's going to happen. You just never know how it's going to respond. But I'm trying to do everything I can in order to play."

Hatcher has been the Cowboys' most consistent defensive linemen this year, leading the team with a career-high seven sacks.

The Cowboys are also banged up in the middle with Nick Hayden, who hasn't practice much at all this week with a rib injury. However, the Cowboys are listing him as probable to play Sunday night.

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