Star Tel: Cowboys Notes
Posted on Tue, Jul. 27, 2004
Woodson's surgery no reason for panic
By Jennifer Floyd Engel;Carlos Mendez
Star-Telegram Staff Writers
IRVING - Darren Woodson will undergo surgery today to repair a ruptured disc in his back.
The surgery might keep him out for about eight weeks, but Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said he wouldn't be surprised if Woodson returns earlier.
"I anticipate Darren getting back very early," he said. "He's in great condition."
Jones said the team has no plans to acquire any extra defensive backs to help during Woodson's absence, which might include the first two games of the season.
"We're not shutting the door on any roster acquisition, but right now, there are no plans on bringing on anybody," Jones said.
Woodson suffered a herniated disc during an off-season workout. He had the option of trying to rehab the injury, but decided Monday to have surgery.
Blade, Whalen cut
Fifth-round draft choice Sean Ryan and seventh-round pick Patrick Crayton have agreed to three-year contracts, while starting tackle Willie Blade and reserve tight end James Whalen were released.
Third-round pick Stephen Peterman, sixth-round pick Nathan Jones and seventh-round pick Jacques Reeves are expected to sign their offer sheets in time to report with the team to training camp Friday in Oxnard, Calif.
"They're fast-tracking us," said Peterman's agent, Stephen Colson. "Right now, we're still in negotiations, but our intention is to be in camp."
Crayton received a $37,000 signing bonus, with the NFL minimum base salaries of $230,000, $305,000 and $385,000.
The release of Blade was somewhat surprising, because he started 15 games last season and appeared to have won the favor of coach Bill Parcells. Blade had 18 tackles and one sack in 2003.
Whalen was limited by injuries in 2003 and played in only seven games.
Chad Hutchinson's release is expected in the next few days, but owner Jerry Jones said Monday a trade is still possible.
"As I'm standing here right now, we have a trade possibility," he said, after giving a lunchtime address at a Cowboys coaching clinic at Texas Stadium. "That's all it is right now -- a trade possibility."
Jones said the Cowboys tried to trade Hutchinson after the NFL Europe season. Jones is trying to trade Hutchinson to a team that will give him an opportunity and that offers a fair return for the Cowboys.
"We're sorry it didn't work out here," Jones said. "We both had the same thing in mind, that he would be the quarterback of the future."