Cowboys DE DeMarcus Ware set to undergo elbow surgery

DeMarcus Ware seems confident he'll be ready to roll when his elbow is fixed. (USATSI)
DeMarcus Ware seems confident he'll be ready to roll when his elbow is fixed. (USATSI)

Though Cowboys defensive end DeMarcus Ware is scheduled for elbow surgery on Feb. 18, he told ESPN Dallas that he plans to participate in most of the team's offseason workouts.

"It's been killing me," Ware said. "It's hurt really bad and that's why I would wear an elbow pad to stop from getting it hit but that didn't do much. It would get irritated even when it was barely touched."

Ware said he's been playing with this problem for the past two years, but it got especially bad in the 2013 preseason and it bothered him all season. Perhaps not coincidentally, he had the lowest sack total of his career (six on the season, two seasons removed from the 19.5 he totaled in 2011), and he was also bothered throughout the season by a quadriceps injury and back problems.

But as the Cowboys official website points out, you have to wonder if Ware's job might be in jeopardy. He's scheduled to make a base salary of $12.5 million, and he'll count more than $16 million against the Cowboys cap.

If the team released him, Ware would still leave about $8 million of dead money on the 2014 cap, but the Cowboys, if they're still worried about his health, might decide that's the safe play. Either way, Ware will do everything he can to be ready as soon as possible.

"Rest helped it," Ware said. "I'm getting my work in. I'm pushing up 315, 405 (pounds) and I'm doing everything, running. My body feels great. Straight up, it feels really, really good. My quad, I can do all of that. I can do everything. Nothing is inhibiting me. If I had to go into the season now, I feel better than I did going into the [2013] season with the shoulder [surgery] ... Now I feel like once we get the elbow cleaned up and fix the nerve deal, it's, 'Let's roll.'"

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