After missing each of the first two weeks of the season with a high ankle sprain, Cowboys nose tackle Jay Ratliff will remain out of the lineup when the Cowboys host the Buccaneers in Week 3.
During his press conference on Friday, Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett told reporters that neither Ratliff or center Phil Costa will be back in the lineup Week 3. "We don't anticipate those guys playing this week. But we're hopeful they can be back (soon)," Garrett said.
Speaking of Ratliff, Garrett told reporters that the defensive tackle "hasn't had any setbacks," but wouldn't provide a timetable for his return, saying "We evaluate these things almost on a day-to-day basis."
Ratliff, a Pro Bowler in each of the last four seasons, has been out of the lineup since suffering the sprain in an Aug. 25 preseason game against the St. Louis Rams.
Cowboys nose tackle Jay Ratliff suffered what the team is calling an ankle sprain against the Rams. He left the lockerroom on crutches with no comment to reporters.
According to a source, the initial diagnosis is a high ankle sprain which would could sideline him from four to six weeks and certainly keep him out of the Sept. 5 season opener against the Giants. The Cowboys will do more tests on Ratliff on Sunday to get a final determination.
Ratliff had just made his return to action this week after missing all of Dallas' offseason activities and the first two games of the preseason because of plantar fasciitis in his right foot.
Ratliff was seen walking around on crutches in the locker room following the Cowboys 20-19 win over the St. Louis Rams on Saturday. Cowboys owner Jerry Jones stated that Ratliff had suffered an ankle sprain in the first half, with the MRI needed to determine just how serious the sprain may be.
Ratliff's status for the season opener against the New York Giants on Sept. 5 is uncertain.
The veteran nose tackle had missed nearly all offseason workouts and most of the preseason while working through plantar fasciitis in his right foot, and had recently returned to the field after being cleared for practice.