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Taco Charlton, Cowboys coaches want more production

First-round draft pick Taco Charlton has played just 35.7 percent of the Cowboys' defensive snaps so far, and that number could go down this week. Matthew Emmons/USA TODAY Sports

FRISCO, Texas -- Taco Charlton has played in 101 of a possible 238 snaps this season, and the Dallas Cowboys' first-round pick is still looking for his first sack.

Charlton has been credited by the coaches with three tackles, a tackle for loss and a quarterback pressure.

“I’m not satisfied, definitely not,” Charlton told reporters. “Right now, the biggest thing is working in the role I’m given. I’m used to playing 60, 70 plays last year, so getting in a rhythm faster is probably the biggest thing, biggest factor for me.”

Charlton has played just 35.7 percent of the snaps so far. Of the defensive linemen to play all four games, only Brian Price has played a smaller percentage.

With the return of David Irving from a suspension this week, Charlton’s playing time could go down. It is possible he could be inactive. The last time the Cowboys had a first-round pick on the inactive list his rookie year not due to injury was Bobby Carpenter in 2006.

“You’ve heard me say this a lot, it’s about earning your opportunities. It’s about earning the jersey on Sunday, then earning the playing time whether it’s a starting role or a backup role,” coach Jason Garrett said. “With our defensive line we use a lot of different guys there, so even if you’re not a starter, we’d like to get you to play. We’d like to get you some snaps in the ballgame. The better you play, the more snaps you’re going to get.”

Garrett and defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli are OK with what Charlton has done in limited snaps, but, like the player, they’re not totally satisfied either.

“The production has got to get better,” Marinelli said. “Overall production. And he’s getting good looks, enough looks. Now it’s time as the season goes. He’s got to start, the production has to come up at that position. So he’s working hard at it in practice and [it's] just a matter of time.”