The Dallas Cowboys believe they can be much better than they were during an 8-8 finish in 2012 and figure health will have a lot to do with it.

The Cowboys had significant injuries on the defensive side of the ball last season. Linebackers Sean Lee and Bruce Carter were injured. Safety Barry Church landed on injured reserve along with nickel cornerback Orlando Scandrick. Wide receiver Miles Austin was not 100 percent either.

They’re all making big progress,” Cowboys vice president Stephen Jones said during an appearance on KRLD-FM, according to Tom Orsborn of the San Antonio Express-News. “I think they’re all going to be ready here to really start getting involved in our offseason program.”

Jones said a healthy return from the group of players could be part of “significant improvements.”

We’ll see. Injuries can be cyclical in the NFL but if the Cowboys can keep their key defensive players on the field as they learn a new system, they could be better in 2013.
 

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Brad Biggs covers the Bears for the Chicago Tribune