The Cowboys might have wanted to look at internal options to replace some injured defensive linemen, but three days into training camp, they’re running low on linemen.
Okoye played last year with the Bears under defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli, who is now the Cowboys’ defensive line coach.
The Cowboys have lost backup defensive end Tyrone Crawford for the year with a torn Achilles, starting defensive end Anthony Spencer went back to Dallas for knee surgery and could miss a month, and starting defensive tackle Jay Ratliff has yet to practice because of a hamstring strain. Reserve defensive tackle Ike Igbinosun was also spotted in a walking boot, dropping them to 10 healthy defensive linemen for practice.
“Injury provides opportunity,” coach Jason Garrett said. “There are some young guys that we have we want to see. We want to see a lot more of those guys play. We saw some of them play in the spring. We’ll get a chance to see more of them now that we will have the pads on starting [Tuesday]. It’s just an opportunity to show us what they can do. If they do that, they earn more of our trust and we give them more opportunities.”
The guys on hand are going to get opportunities for plenty of reps, also, with half the starting line and less than three rotations available for practice.