Anthony Spencer hopes to be back in 2013

IRVING, Texas – Anthony Spencer is not thinking about 2013, but he dropped a hint about it when the free-agent-to-be was asked about the Cowboys' linebacker corps on Thursday.

With the way Sean Lee and Bruce Carter played before season-ending injuries and the level of play of DeMarcus Ware and Spencer throughout the year, the Cowboys could have the best linebacker corps in the NFL.

“If we can have that throughout the year next year, I believe we can be one of the best defenses,” Spencer said.

Does that mean Spencer is coming back next year?

“I hope so,” he said with a smile. “We’ll see. I don’t control that stuff, guys.”

But he sort of does control it.

Spencer is playing this year on the franchise tag and is scheduled to be an unrestricted free agent this offseason. The Cowboys could use the tag on him again and pay him more than $10 million, but they would like to re-sign him to a long-term extension.

Spencer leads the Cowboys in tackles (92) and has recorded double-digit sacks (10) for the first time in his career. He also has five tackles for loss, 24 quarterback pressures, three pass deflections, two forced fumbles and a fumble recovery.

“I’m doing my part, right?” Spencer said.

He is, and it could lead to his first Pro Bowl appearance.

“I mean, I’d be very happy,” Spencer said. “I play this game to be good at it, so that just shows I’m doing something right.”