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Jay Ratliff 'believes' he'll be ready for Cowboys camp

Dallas Cowboys nose tackle Jay Ratliff hasn't missed a game in his NFL career, but the four-time Pro Bowl selection has been hobbled in recent months after suffering a torn plantar fascia at the beginning of the Cowboys' offseason program.

Ratliff told the Cowboys' official website on Tuesday that he "believes" he'll be cleared for training camp July 30. One of the team's most durable defenders has spent the offseason rehabbing the foot, but doesn't sound worried about missing any action.

"There's really no sweat on my brow," Ratliff said. "My responsibility is just to communicate with my trainers, communicate with the coaches, let everybody know what's going on, keep everybody aware, and do my job. There's no complaints, there's no excuses, there's no anything. ... In spite of the circumstances, I'm going to do my job: Win the fight."

Ratliff's confidence aside, we wouldn't be surprised to see the lineman start camp on the physically unable to perform list. The post on the Cowboys' website also mentioned cornerback Mike Jenkins, guard Mackenzy Bernadeau and rookie receiver Danny Coale as PUP list candidates.

Ratliff is undersized for his position, but he's battled through a string of minor rib and elbow injuries to emerge as one of the team's most durable defenders. The Cowboys' 3-4 defense hinges on his play in the middle and might dictate a patient approach. The key date, after all, isn't when training camp begins -- it's Week 1 against the New York Giants.

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