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Jerry's 'dream': Carter, Lee can be like 49ers' LBs

The Cowboys were relegated to playoff outsiders this season, giving owner Jerry Jones a good perspective on this year's postseason field.

He has come away from the experience impressed by 49ers linebackers NaVorro Bowman and Patrick Willis, and he believes he might have similar playmakers on his roster in Bruce Carter and Sean Lee.

"We all watched Bowman, we watched Willis out there against San Francisco, and boy did those guys make a difference," Jones told NFL Network on Tuesday at the Senior Bowl in Mobile, Ala. "Now those guys and our Sean Lee and Carter -- this is my dream -- those guys out there from sideline to sideline.

"(They're) not exactly the prototype for the makeup of the two guys you want in the middle, you might want more of a thumper to go along with Sean Lee," Jones added. "But if we can keep both those guys out there, adjust our defense, we might be going toward Willis and Bowman like we they have in San Francisco."

Carter underwent surgery for a torn anterior cruciate ligament during his senior season at North Carolina, but the Cowboys still selected him in the second round of the 2011 draft. Carter returned in late October to play special teams for Dallas, but he'll have a much more involved role next season.

"It's amazing what Bruce Carter was able to do relative to the time you assess when you have that kind of injury," Jones told Dallas reporters Monday, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. "He was outstanding in his rehab."

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