|Cowboys linebacker DeMarcus Ware (94) says he'll be ready to go against the Bengals this week. (US Presswire)|
“I'm healthy enough to play and that's what I'm going to do,” said Ware, who has been dealing with a nagging neck injury all season and then had a minor shoulder setback last week. “It's always week to week," Ware said. "When people always ask me how my body feels, I say, ‘Good enough to play on Sunday.' "
Ware is tied for fifth in the NFL with 10 sacks, but hasn't recorded one in three weeks. Ware said he would be more concerned with the mini-drought if he wasn't active in other areas.
“You know what? A sack is just a statistic," Ware said. "When you're out there hitting the quarterback, getting pressure on him, getting interceptions, out there getting turnovers, that's what it's about. I haven't been getting sacks the last two or three games. But I've been hitting the quarterback and getting pressure on him. But I've got to step it up this week, get those plays, make those big plays this week to win the game."
Respect for Newman: Sunday's game with the Bengals will be the first meeting for the Cowboys against former first-round pick Terence Newman, who spent nine years with the club from 2003-11. Newman was released in March when the Cowboys decided to sign free agent Brandon Carr and then later drafted Morris Claiborne in the first round. Claiborne (sixth overall) was the highest player the Cowboys drafted since Newman (fifth) in 2003.
“Terence was a really, really good player for this team for a long time,” coach Jason Garrett said. “We have an immense amount of respect for him as a person and as a player. We just felt as an organization that it was the right time for to make a move there and to move on and go in a different direction. I told him when I talked to him, ‘You're going to be playing for a long time and just keep doing what you're doing.' I have so much respect for him as a guy, what he did for this organization, certainly as a player. He's playing very well right now.”
For the future: The Cowboys signed Darrion Weems from the Broncos' practice squad on Wednesday. The move isn't so much for this week or even this year, but as a future prospect. Garrett said the move is similar to one of acquiring tackle Jermey Parnell from the Saints' practice squad in 2010. Parnell still has just one start under his belt but could get more playing time in the next few games, especially if right tackle Doug Free continues to struggle. The Cowboys are the fifth team Weems (6-5, 320) has been with in his rookie season after stops with the Patriots, Vikings, Colts and Broncos.