Cowboys sign veteran Kris Brown

IRVING, Texas -- The Dallas Cowboys did not give David Buehler much competition last offseason, but they are making sure he has some in 2011.

The Cowboys signed veteran kicker Kris Brown to the 53-man roster Friday, giving him a two-year deal.

To make room on the roster, the Cowboys placed linebacker Leon Williams (hamstring) on injured reserve.

Interim coach Jason Garrett said Buehler would kick Sunday against the Philadelphia Eagles.

"Anytime you can add a good player to your football team to create competition at any position, that's a good thing," Garrett said. "That's what we saw this as. ... We want to create competition throughout our football team at all positions."

Buehler has had an up-and-down first season as the Cowboys' kicker. He has made 24 of 31 field-goal attempts and has had costly miscues, including a missed extra point on Christmas night at Arizona that allowed the Cardinals to win 27-26 on a field goal.

Buehler has tied a team record with four made field goals of 50 or more yards this season, but he has missed four of seven attempts from 30 to 39 yards and eight of 11 from 40 to 49 yards. He has 21 touchbacks this year, fourth in the league.

"He obviously has a very strong leg," Garrett said. "He's a talented guy. He's an awfully good kickoff guy. He's proven that he can make a number of long kicks. He's proven he can make some big kicks. He needs to improve his consistency and he's working on that.

"Going forward, he's a guy that certainly will compete to be the kicker of this football team. We like what he's done. He certainly has to improve but we're excited about his future."

The 34-year-old Brown, a native of Southlake, Texas, was with the San Diego Chargers for four games this season, filling in for an injured Nate Kaeding, and made four of five attempts, with a miss off the upright from 50 yards late in a 23-20 loss to the New England Patriots.

He kicked for the Houston Texans from 2002 to 2009 and for the Pittsburgh Steelers from 1999 to 2001. For his career, he has made 256 of 331 attempts.

The Cowboys had Connor Hughes and Delbert Alvarado in the offseason and training camp, but neither was much of a threat to Buehler. Brown's résumé suggests he will be much more formidable.

Todd Archer covers the Cowboys for ESPNDallas.com. You can follow him on Twitter or leave a question for his mailbag.