Cowboys Sean Lee nearly back to full health

ARLINGTON, Texas – Sean Lee has been spending the last few months adjusting to a new defensive scheme. Although he’ll still be playing in the middle of the field, the Dallas Cowboys linebacker is trying to get used to having only two other linebackers alongside of him.

During the 2013 Reliant Home Run Derby at Rangers Ballpark on Wednesday, Lee said he’s enjoying the change to a 4-3 scheme that is “suited great” for Dallas’ defensive line and defensive backfield. Lee says Monte Kiffin’s defense gives the team a chance to be more consistent, something they have struggled with on that side of the ball in recent years.

“Learning the new defense, it’s been awesome with Coach Kiffin,” Lee said. “The intensity we’ve had this spring has been great and we have to carry that over to OTAs and bring that to camp.”

Lee had arguably been the Cowboys’ top defender during the first six games of the 2012 season, recording a team-high 58 tackles, deflecting three passes and intercepting another. But Lee’s third NFL season came to an end in Week 7 when he tore ligaments in his right big toe.

Fortunately for the Cowboys, Lee is closing in on full health.

“The toe is ready to go,” Lee said. “I’m pretty much 100 percent. I’ll be going through all the OTAs and it’s getting better and better every week. Other than some soreness after practice, I’m pretty much 100 percent.”

Lee said if there was a game tomorrow, he would be playing.

“Ever since college, I’ve really changed across the board how I’ve trained, how I try to recover, stretching, eating, every habit that can help me stay on the field,” Lee said. “Last year, the type of injury it was, I thought it was a fluke. It’s not much you really can do to avoid that. But I’m still at this stage trying to avoid injuries, and I have to find a way to stay on the field.

“If I want to be an effective player, I have to be on the field.”

Follow Jon Machota on Twitter: @jonmachota