Byron Jones took most work at CB in practice but spot open

IRVING, Texas -- How Morris Claiborne feels Saturday night will determine where Byron Jones plays against the New York Jets.

Claiborne has not practiced this week because of a hamstring strain, which has put Jones at cornerback this week. Claiborne missed two games earlier in the year with a hamstring strain and was unable to finish last week's loss against the Green Bay Packers.

"Those are tricky injuries," Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. "Certainly we want our guys to practice and be able to show us something on the practice field before we put them out in the game. He's a veteran player. He knows our system. He's played a lot for us. So you give him more of a chance than others. But again I think it's the nature of the injury. Again we'll see how he feels today, tomorrow and leading up to the ballgame on Saturday."

The uncertainty doesn't bother Jones.

He has started games as the nickel cornerback, outside corner and free safety.

"I'm used to it," Jones said. "It's just what I do, what they got me for. It's my job."

But the Cowboys do wonder if Jones' versatility could end up hurting his development. Can he be at good at one spot when they are asking him to master multiple spots? Garrett said the coaches and front office will talk about Jones' best spot when the season ends but they can't have him focus on safety or corner right now out of necessity.

"I think it's a really good thing to be able to do it, and I think that's something we've really been very aware of since we've gotten him here, that very question, 'Have we not given him a chance to succeed at either spot if we move him spot to spot?'" Garrett said. "But he's never shown any hesitation to be able to handle it. He embraces it and I think he plays well on both spots. It's not ideal. You have to be able to get your players in the right spots and you have to be able to get the right guys out there to absorb injuries over the course of the year. He's been the piece that has allowed us to do that."

As he gets ready each week, Jones said playing both spots helps him.

"When I'm watching film it's from the perspective as a safety and a corner because you never know what can happen," Jones said. "When I was at safety last week, Mo went down and I went to corner. Luckily I watched film as a corner a little bit too so I knew what to do coming in."