ARLINGTON, TX - AUGUST 21: Dallas Cowboys team owner Jerry Jones talks with linebacker DeMarcus Ware #94 prior to the Cowboys taking the field against the Tennessee Titans during a preseason game at Cowboys Stadium on August 21, 2009 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
Cowboys linebacker DeMarcus Ware has returned to the practice field at Valley Ranch for the first time since going down with a neck injury during last Sunday's 20-17 loss to the San Diego Chargers in Arlington.
Head coach Wade Phillips had said earlier in the day that the return was possible, and on Wednesday described Ware as "50/50" for Saturday night's game against the unbeaten Saints in New Orleans. Since the injury on Sunday, Ware has shown steady improvement, lifting weights and working out with strength and conditioning coach Joe Juraszek throughout the week.
Reports have Ware going through a team stretching routine. He then went to another field and worked individually with assistant strength and conditioning coach Britt Brown.
Phillips said that Ware's availability would be greatly determined by how he responds to the workout today.
Ware has said that he wants to play, but that he'll defer to the team's medical staff.
"It's really important," Ware said of the decision on Monday. "Since not only are you talking about the team standpoint of being able to go out there and make plays and try to win a game this week. But also you got to think about the player's health. He can go out there and he might get paralyzed, hurt himself even more.
"Which one is more important: longevity or right now?"
If unable to play, Ware will be replaced by rookie Victor Butler.