Nose tackle Jay Ratliff was among the Cowboys' walking wounded during the team's offseason practices this season, and he wasn't necessarily walking all that well.
Ratliff sat out all 11 on-field practice sessions and spent almost all of the spring and summer while recovering from a pretty serious foot injury. Near the very beginning of the offseason strength and conditioning program, he suffered a torn plantar fascia.
"I've just been rehabbing, even now," Ratliff said Tuesday. "Just getting treatment and getting right, getting ready for the season."
Ratliff said he "believes" he'll be cleared to practice when training camp begins, and indications from the Cowboys' medical staff are that the four-time Pro Bowler will indeed be ready to go by the team's first practice on July 30.
A handful of Cowboys players are likely to begin camp on the Physically Unable to Perform list, including cornerback Mike Jenkins, guard Mackenzy Bernadeau and perhaps fifth-round wide receiver Danny Coale.
Late in 2011, Ratliff was given practices and some snaps off while dealing with a rib injury. He had surgery on both his elbows following the 2009 season.
But despite being considered an undersized player at one of the game's most physically tolling positions, Ratliff hasn't missed a start the last four years, and he doesn't think this offseason's foot injury will give him any problems when the season begins.
"There's really no sweat on my brow," Ratliff said. "My responsibility is just to communicate with my trainers, communicate with the coaches, let everybody know what's going on, keep everybody aware, and do my job. There's no complaints, there's no excuses, there's no anything ... In spite of the circumstances, I'm going to do my job: Win the fight."
Come back for more on Ratliff later on Tuesday at DallasCowboys.com.