Matt Johnson leaves practice field early

IRVING, Texas – Just when it looked like Matt Johnson was set to make his season debut after missing the first five games with a recurring hamstring problem, the rookie safety left the practice field Friday during special teams’ work.

It’s not clear whether Johnson got hurt or just needed a quick break before the full practice began but he did leave with head athletic trainer Jim Maurer. He left the practice field last week but returned after the open part of practice ended.

In his Friday morning press conference, coach Jason Garrett said Johnson was doing a good job in practice the last two weeks, and “hopefully we can inch him along and get him some opportunities this week.”

Johnson has had hamstring troubles since June and missed most of training camp. He played in one preseason game before hurting his other hamstring, which kept him out of practice until last week.

Running back DeMarco Murray (foot), center Ryan Cook (hamstring) and defensive end Sean Lissemore (ankle) did not practice for the third straight day.

Outside linebacker Anthony Spencer (pectoral) was on the practice field for the third straight day, which is an indication he will be able to return Sunday at Carolina after missing the previous two games. Center Phil Costa (knee) is also practicing.