The Cowboys had only seven linemen active for the game against the 49ers. Kevin Kowalski was the reserve interior lineman, and Jermy Parnell was the reserve tackle.
So when center Phil Costa went out with a knee injury and Kowalski came in, there would have been no replacement if he or one of the guards had been hurt.
The Cowboys got fortunate in a couple of ways. First, they wound up not needing another guard. Second, Kowalski had been working more at center than guard.
“Fortunately, I had been getting quite a bit of reps at center during the week,” Kowalski said. “Not so much at guard. So the situation wasn’t the worst situation that could have happened to me, and I felt I was pretty prepared and the coaches helped me be prepared for the moment.”