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Cowboys will waive Glenn to clear room for younger receivers

OXNARD, Calif. -- The Dallas Cowboys will move forward without Terry Glenn on their roster. At least for now.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said Friday that the team was waiving Glenn, but didn't rule out the possibility of the veteran receiver returning later if he's not claimed by another team. Glenn didn't play until the regular season finale last year because of a right knee injury.

Jones insisted that the decision wasn't about a months-long dispute with Glenn over a proposed injury waiver that kept him from taking part in offseason workouts and would have greatly reduced his salary should he re-injure the knee and be unable to play.

"That turned out not to be an issue," Jones said as his team wrapped up its first practice of training camp. "At the end of the day it had more to do with where we are right now ... all that might have impacted how we give our young players a chance in how we evaluate that position."

Instead of wondering if and when he might be ready to play, repeating what they went through last season after Glenn was hurt in training camp, the Cowboys for now will focus on the young receivers who will play opposite Pro Bowler Terrell Owens.

Glenn missed the first 15 games last season two operations on his right knee.

Throughout the summer, Glenn refused to sign a split contract, one that would have given him only $500,000 of his $1.74 million base salary should he not be able to play because of an injured right knee.

Glenn, who turned 34 on Wednesday, had consecutive 1,000-yard seasons for the Cowboys before his injury last year.

Glenn's agent, James Gould, didn't return messages.

While many weren't surprised, teammates found out about the decision as they walked off the field after practice.

"We've been practicing without him, preparing for whatever the situation may be for a while," said Patrick Crayton, who became the primary No. 2 receiver last season.

"With him being out last year, we had some guys that stepped up. It's pretty much our same lineup," Owens said. "It's not a burden. I relish these opportunities. Just like last year, I knew when he went out, went down, I had to step my game up. For me, it's an opportunity just like other guys see this as an opportunity."

Owens caught a team-record 15 touchdown passes last season and the Cowboys set team records with 4,105 passing yards and 36 touchdowns, even without Glenn. The 455 points scored by Dallas were the second-most in team history.

"We still set a lot of records last year as far as the passing game is concerned, I think we have the nucleus of a really good passing team, a really good offense," coach Wade Phillips said. "I think we can continue that with the players that we have."

Crayton had 50 catches for 697 yards and seven touchdowns, but did have a critical drop in a playoff loss to the New York Giants. The Cowboys also return Pro Bowl tight end Jason Witten (team-leading 96 catches) and running back Marion Barber (44 catches).

Career Statistics
Rec: 593

Yards: 8,823

TDs: 44

Experience: 13

Dallas also is depending on Sam Hurd and Miles Austin each having another year of experience. Still-unsigned first-round pick Felix Jones, a running back from Arkansas, is expected to be a pass catcher out of the backfield, like he was in college.

"We can be realistic about develop what we're going to do if we don't have Terry," Jerry Jones said.

While Jones knows there is the risk that Glenn may be claimed by another team, he didn't rule out the possible return of Glenn later if he's still available -- and the Cowboys need him.

"My understanding is he's going to get himself ready to play and at the same time not be foolish and expose himself to injury," Jones said. "If we want to do something in the future, we'll do it on a good arm's length basis, a new deck of card as far as any business is concerned.

"As we go down the road, we'll see where we are," Jones said.

Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press

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