IRVING - Cowboys running back Felix Jones was noticeably absent when practice began at Valley Ranch on Tuesday.

He feels good, said Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett. He just had this little tightness in his hamstring, so we didn't think it was a good idea to have him practice today. We're hopeful he'll be back out there tomorrow, and be ready to go for Saturday's game.

The Cowboys already have two running backs on injured reserve, including DeMarco Murray, who is out with a fractured right foot, and Phillip Tanner, who is out for the rest of the season with a strained hamstring.

It's still too early to tell whether Jones will be able to play on Christmas Eve against the Eagles, but if he can't, two guys who weren't even on the roster a month ago will have to take over the duties at running back.

It's just a matter of approaching the game with the mindset of helping the team win, said Cowboys running back Sammy Morris. Again, I m prepared to do that.

Morris had 12 carries for 53 yards on Saturday against Tampa Bay. The Cowboys are his fourth stop in a 12-year NFL career, and he looked remarkably fresh for a 34-year-old running back.

Apparently looks for the former Texas Tech running back are deceiving.

Freshness, yeah, no, fresh legs went out the window about five years ago, Morris said. Maybe there was a general sense of, I can't even say fresh, but a general sense of something being new again.

If Morris has to become the primary running back, then Chauncey Washington, who is currently on the practice squad, would become Morris' backup. He is a third-year player from Southern Cal.

Being a running back, you may get your nicks and you're banged up, but it's part of the game, Washington said. That's why there are so many running backs in this league now.

So far this season, the Cowboys have used five different running backs and that number could change again if Jones can't play Saturday, and Washington is forced into action as a backup to Morris.


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