Jay Ratliff’s status for opener in doubt


The Cowboys have been dealing with injuries to key players all throughout the preseason, so watching defensive tackle Jay Ratliff go down on Saturday night wasn’t a new experience for them.

That doesn’t make it any more enjoyable, though. Ratliff left the locker room on crutches after Dallas’ game against the Rams with what the team is calling a sprained ankle. Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports that the initial diagnosis is of a high ankle sprain, an injury that usually takes a month or more to fully clear up. If true, Ratliff’s availability for the season opener against the Giants would be in serious doubt.

Ratliff was making his preseason debut Saturday because of plantar fasciitis, although Hill reports that the Cowboys consider the ankle injury “a much bigger deal.” Owner Jerry Jones admitted to some concern about Ratliff’s ability to play without offering any specific information about his status.

“Well yeah,” Jones said. “We’re concerned about any of these injuries gettign down where we’re within ten days of playing so would have to be concerned about it.”

Wide receiver Miles Austin, cornerback Mike Jenkins and tight end Jason Witten join Ratliff as key Cowboys players with uncertain outlooks for the season opener.