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Phil Costa Injury: Cowboys Center Exits In 1st Quarter

Dallas Cowboys starting center Phil Costa left the season opener against the New York Giants on Wednesday night with an injury before completing even a quarter of action. He departed with a back injury midway through the first quarter, giving way to Ryan Cook.

Costa, the third-year pro out of the University of Maryland, seems to have re-aggravated a prior back injury. He played in just four games as a rookie in 2010, but in 2011 he started all 16 Cowboys contests. There has been no further word when the 6'3, 313-pound center is expected to return.

Cook, his replacement, is a seventh-year lineman from the University of New Mexico. After being a full-time starter for the Minnesota Vikings in his second and third seasons, the 6'6, 325-pound Cook has since been a backup in Minnesota and last year with the Miami Dolphins. The Cowboys just acquired him a week ago.

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Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.