We've known this for some time.
What we didn't know until Tuesday was that Ratliff, a Pro Bowl and All-Pro selection in 2009, has played hurt through the last three seasons. Ratliff told the Dallas Morning News that he was hindered over that span in his workouts, though he never missed a game.
"I played the last three years with bad elbows," Ratliff said. "It was kept quiet because I never talked to anybody about it. When I told the trainers, nobody knew how serious it was until I asked them to do an X-Ray and they saw the bone spurs. ... Today was the first day that I benched press in two years, and it felt good. No pain at all. So I am excited about that."
Ratliff was one of a number of Cowboys who underwent minor surgery this off-season. In his case, the procedure involved removing bone spurs from his elbows. Free of pain, the two-time Pro Bowler figures to (continue to) anchor the Cowboys' front seven in 2010.