The most accomplished player on the Cowboys' defensive front right now is George Selvie, who wasn't even on the roster when training camp started last year. Dallas added him when injuries hit.
The switch away from a 3-4 defense forced Ware to play with his hand on the ground closer to the offensive line rather than a stand-up outside linebacker who could get a faster start on the snap.
Still, Ware looked good in training camp and even intercepted a pass by Eli Manning on the first play of last season. But he never did find his form as a pass rusher after fading late in 2012 and finished third on the team in sacks behind Hatcher and Selvie.
"DeMarcus Ware, through his performance on the field and his outstanding character, is someone who is held in the highest regard within the Dallas Cowboys family," Jones said in the statement. "He is worthy of our greatest respect, and we want what is best for him and his family."
A first-round pick under coach Bill Parcells in 2005, Ware finished with 117 sacks, three more than Martin. He set a club record with 20 sacks in 2008 during a seven-year streak of at least 10 sacks per season. The four-time All-Pro is ninth in club history with 710 tackles.
AP NFL website: www.pro32.ap.org