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It sounds like Cowboys WR Miles Austin will be out till Week 1

By Ryan Wilson | CBSSports.com
Austin was relegated to signing autographs after suffering a hamstring injury. (US PRESSWIRE)

When it comes to pass catchers, the Cowboys are in a bad way. Pro Bowl tight end Jason Witten suffered a lacerated kidney in the Week 2 preseason game against the Raiders, and earlier this week, wide receiver Dez Bryant was shelved for the rest of the month (at least) because of knee soreness. Then there's Miles Austin, who when healthy lines up opposite Bryant.

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Except that, like virtually everybody else, Austin hasn't been healthy. He strained his hamstring on August 4 and he's been sidelined ever since. So when will we see him? Good question.

"We're basically just wanting to make sure he's ready for New York," owner and general manager Jerry Jones said Tuesday during a radio appearance (via ESPNDallas.com). "That's where it's all headed for him. He probably will need some work, just logic tells you, before he gets in the game, but we're not interested in seeing him (play in the preseason).

"The risks of him getting out there and really competing at this time would I think be overruled (by) the game we have for him being completely healthy in New York. Now, I'm sure he'd be the first to tell you he could go if we were playing New York tonight, and we will have him as ready as he can be for that. So that's the plan."

You know who else would be the first to tell you that he'll be ready to go come Week 1? Bryant, who did exactly that on Tuesday. "You know I'm going to play in New York, that's without a doubt," he said according to Cowboys beat writer Clarence Hill.

Jones agreed saying that "It sounds like that (Bryant's) going to be fine. We'll see how it works. I would think he's probably going to be limited this weekend, but we were quite relieved that he doesn't have any structural damage in there."

As for Austin, his hamstrings were an issue last season, too, causing him to miss six games.

For now, the group of healthy wideouts are led by grizzled veteran Kevin Ogletree, the only member of the bunch with a regular-season NFL reception. He's joined by Andrew Holmes, Dwayne Harris and Cole Beasley.

The Cowboys aren't going to be competitive in the division with this cast but it sounds like the Big 3 will be back on the field by the season opener if not shortly thereafter.

For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnNFL on Twitter, like us on Facebook, and subscribe to our Pick-6 Podcast and NFL newsletter. You can follow Ryan Wilson on Twitter here: @ryanwilson_07.

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