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Before OTAs, linebacker Justin Durant’s chances of making the team were probably pretty low. Now, he’s basically assured a roster spot because the Cowboys are so thin at linebacker following Lee’s injury.
According to Nick Eatman of DallasCowboys.com, Durant was starting at middle linebacker on Monday:
Durant was the Cowboys’ starting middle linebacker during Monday’s OTA practice with Sean Lee now out for the season with a torn ACL in his left knee. Durant was the primary backup for Lee last year but also sustained some injuries as well. He missed four of the last six games with hamstring injuries last season and only finished with 30 tackles in 11 games.
But this is another opportunity for the veteran linebacker, who has played seemingly every linebacker position during his seven-year career.
'I’m comfortable. We all basically cross-train in all the meetings to be able to step in just in case something like this happens,' said Durant, who said he played two years of middle linebacker in Jacksonville. 'I’ve been studying. I was ready to go. Whatever they tell me to do, I do it.'
Last season, Durant made a tackle on 8.4 percent of his snaps, according to Pro Football Focus (subscription required). In comparison, Lee checked in at 12.0 percent and Bruce Carter at 8.2 percent.