Getting help

The Cowboys not only get healthy during the bye but they were left no worse for wear in the NFC East standings because of losses by the Eagles and Giants.

The Redskins remain in first place with a 3-1 mark, just one game ahead of the Cowboys at 2-2. But the Cowboys won the first head-to-head battle with Washington.

Still coach Jason Garrett said he could care less.

"I think the biggest thing we try to do every day, but particularly this early in the season is worry about ourselves and what we're doing," Garrett said.

"I think sometimes people get caught up in OK, they won, they lost, that's good for us, that's bad for us. Really what we have to worry about is the Dallas Cowboys and being our best every day. We have many challenges ahead. We have 12 more football games to play. It's a lifetime, as you know. We're going to focus on being as good as we can be each day and hopefully get ourselves ready to play the Patriots."

—The Cowboys have placed scoreboards to denote time, score and down and distance at the end of both practice fields so they can work on game situations.

"It's the same thing that we did starting in training camp when we were down in San Antonio and also at Cowboys Stadium during camp," Garrett said.

"If you remember, we did those situations and had the scoreboard up. We just feel like what we're trying to do as coaches is simulate the game as much as we can in all parts of our practice, whether it's a drill before we start the team work in practice, our regular team work or our situational work at the end of practice.

"We've tried to do that from the start of training camp and the scoreboards finally got in and so we put them up over the bye week. We've been doing it with Bucky Buchanan using a stopwatch like we've done in the past, but we think it's valuable in recreating and simulating a game when you have that scoreboard; you have the time that everybody can see; and you understand what the situation is as concretely as possible."

PLAYER NOTES: K David Buehler missed the past two games with a groin injury. His return against the Patriots is up in the air as he didn't kick much in practice. A clearer determination will be made later in the week.

—CB Orlando Scandrick won't be eased back into the lineup as he has to handle Patriots slot receiver Wes Welker on Sunday. Welker has 40 catches for 616 and five touchdowns. Welker is on pace to shatter the NFL record for yards and catches. "I knew I was going to get Wes Welker my first game back from the time I got hurt, so it is what it is," Scandrick said.

"It's a huge challenge. He's a worker. He does everything 100 percent, full speed. He works. Him and Brady have a great relationship. They know what each other is going to do. It's a huge challenge. They said today he's on pace for 2,600 yards or something crazy, but going into this game, I'm going to make him work. We're going to see what happens. It's going to be a great challenge." —S Danny McCray missed practice Monday and is listed as day to day because of a sprained ankle he suffered against Detroit last week. McCray is the team's best special teams player. He led them in special teams tackles last year and is leading again in 2011. "I'm doing my rehab," McCray said. "I went out there today and broke a little sweat to see how it felt and it felt pretty good. I played the rest of the game with it so that was good. I can play through the pain as long as it's something tolerable."

—WR Miles Austin is back at practice and ready to go after missing the last two games with a hamstring injury. He sat out the Redskins and Lions games. He will play against the Patriots on Sunday.

—WR Laurent Robinson has surpassed Kevin Ogletree as the No. 3 receiver behind Dez Bryant and Miles Austin.

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