Ratliff's arrest came just six weeks after Cowboys practice-squad player Jerry Brown Jr. was killed in an auto accident with teammate Josh Brent, who was driving and now faces up to 20 years in prison for one count of intoxicated manslaughter.
While the NFL holds the power to discipline players for violating the substance abuse and personal conduct policy, the Cowboys owner has been proactive in the past with players such as Dez Bryant who have had off-the-field troubles.
NFL spokesperson Greg Aiello told Watkins on Thursday that the NFL will investigate Ratliff's arrest as it does with all DWI cases.
Ratliff played just six games this season due to injury and got into a tiff with Jones at one point regarding his inability to play. However, with new defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin moving the Cowboys from a 3-4 to a 4-3 base defense, Ratliff's role could have been magnified.
His arrest and any subsequent discipline might put those plans in limbo.
Follow Kevin Patra on Twitter @kpatra.