Dallas Cowboys News & Notes: The Passion Of Bryant

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Latest Cowboys headlines: Dez Bryant shows and talks about his passion for the game; Finding depth was defense's key at OTA's; Does a younger defense mean a better defense?

Absent any form of organized football, the video below is an outstanding reminder of what the Cowboys have in Dez Bryant. As one youtube commenter wrote, "Dez still looks like he's in college out there, making grown men look physically inferior, which isn't something you see to often in the NFL." The video closes with a nice interview of Bryant in which he talks about his passion for the game. Watch it now before somebody decides to take it down.

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Gosselin: Why I like the Giants to win the NFC East, and why the Cowboys aren't second | Rick Gosselin, DMN
Gosselin sees the Cowboys finishing third in the NFC East.

Dallas fielded the NFL’s worst defense a year ago and now its three best players are gone — DeMarcus Ware as a cap casualty, Jason Hatcher in free agency and Sean Lee to an injury. The Cowboys will continue to be high-scoring on offense, but the defense is an even bigger question mark than a year ago with so much inexperience in the front seven.

Younger Dallas Cowboys defense could mean better | Clarence Hill, Star-Telegram
How opinions differ. Where Gosselin sees only doom and gloom for the defense, Hill offers a more positive outlook.

Considering that the Cowboys were one game away from the playoffs with such a historically bad defense, those in the organization don’t think they have turn into another version of the famed Doomsday defenses of yesteryear to make a difference in a postseason run.

"We are going to play at better levels than our guys played last year," Stephen Jones said. "Some of those guys can’t make our team this year who were on the active roster, and they can’t even make the 90. So that tells you a lot about our defensive front at the end of the season."

Finding Depth Was Defense's Key At OTA's - Bryan Broaddus, DC.com
If the Cowboys improve their depth, especially on defense, they'll be a better team than they were last year. And finding depth, according to Broaddus is just what the Cowboys have done in OTAs.

Dallas Cowboys CB Morris Claiborne: I'm ready - Tood Archer, ESPN Dallas
Good.

Dallas Cowboys linebacker Bruce Carter ‘taking steps in the right direction’ | Jon Machota, DMN
LB Coach Matt Eberflus says Carter is putting in extra work and "taking steps in the right direction."

"It’s him getting his eyes on the quarterback and doing a great job of breaking on the ball," Eberflus said. "He’s doing what we’re asking him to do. He knows what he has to do. He’s trying to make a step every day to work to get better."

Durant Gets First MLB Reps, Knows Job Isn't Won Yet - Rowan Kavner, DMN
Kavner writes that Durant’s played in more NFL games than the rest of the linebackers on the team combined. As such, his veteran leadership could give him a leg up int the competition for th MLB spot. At the same time, Durant knows it's a competition.

"I think that’s what it is," Durant said. "I think once we go to camp (Eberflus) is going to start probably moving some guys around and putting guys here and there and try to mix and match and see what the best group is for us."

Cowboys' Twitter mailbag: Nickel as the base defense? - Todd Archer, ESPN Dallas
Archer covers such diverse topics as Kyle Orton's absence, Bruce Carter's position, how many rookies make the roster and Jason Babin's availability. He also suggests the nickel is already the Cowboys' base defense.

If you think about it, it is their base package. It's all dependent on personnel groupings. If teams want to line up with a fullback or two tight ends, you'll see their base defense. If they want to spread the field, they'll go with a nickel look. The Cowboys feel like they're covered at cornerback with Brandon Carr, Orlando Scandrick and Morris Claiborne. They like their defensive line rotation, although there are a lot of questions simply based on the untested or unknown players added in the offseason or coming back from injuries. But at the end of the day, Rod Marinelli will be in a nickel defense 60-65 percent of the snaps.

Dirk Nowitzki appreciative of Dallas Cowboys for participating in his celebrity baseball game | Dallas Morning News
Dez Bryant, Jason Witten, Terrance Williams and Jason Garrett are among the active Cowboys expected to be on hand for Nowitzki's celebrity baseball game. Romo, who is still recovering from back surgery is listed on the roster as a dugout coach. Former Cowboys Bradie James and Terrell Owens are also expected to participate.

"This year we’re stacked," Nowitzki said. "When Dez Bryant decides to come and Jason Witten wants to go and then Tony Romo wants to stop by, that’s big. The Cowboys are huge here, so that means a lot to me and everybody here."

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Vacation time for two of our favorite sources of Cowboys coverage.

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New developmental league launching in fall - San Antonio Express-News
The oddly named "Fall Experimental Football League" plans to launch in October as a developmental league, with no NFL affiliation but with lots of intriguing ideas. The league is contemplating eliminating the kicking game altogether, but adding mandatory 2-point conversion. Games will be played on weeknights, mostly Wednesdays. Six teams, with 40-man rosters, will be located in the New York and Boston areas; Austin, Texas; Portland, Oregon; Omaha, Nebraska; and in Florida.

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