Sean Lee not giving up

IRVING, Texas -- Cowboys starting middle linebacker Sean Lee will miss the regular-season finale against the Philadelphia Eagles on Sunday night with a sprained neck. If the Cowboys win this game, they will clinch the NFC East and either a No. 3 or No. 4 seed in the playoffs.

Lee hopes to play in the postseason.

"That’s the plan," Lee said. "We’re going to check week in and week out and see what the doctors [say] and once they feel the stability in my neck is fine and is ready to go, they’ll let me back on the field. I have seen improvement. But like I said, they have to see a lot of improvement each week to put me back out there."

Lee, who hasn't played since Dec. 9 at Chicago, gets the strength in his neck tested every week to get cleared.

With so much on the line Sunday night, Lee expressed disappointment he can't play. It's the second consecutive season Lee has missed the final game of the regular season due to injury. Lee missed the Week 17 game at Washington last season with a season-ending toe injury and now he's out with a neck issue.

"I’m very disappointed obviously," Lee said. "It’s two years in a row I haven’t been there when the team needed me most. There are some things you can control and some things you can’t. You have to play the cards you’re dealt and try to stay positive. I’m excited with the guys we have going this week. They’ve done a great job preparing and I think they’ll be effective."

DeVonte Holloman replaces Lee as the middle linebacker and Bruce Carter, the weakside linebacker is the signal-caller.

"He’s a guy who can make a lot of plays," Lee said of Holloman, a rookie. "Good athlete. Great instincts. He’s a guy who with the more experience he gets, the better he will play. And I’m excited to watch him this week."