Monday, Aug. 7th (9-11 AM practice)
Overcast skies greeted the Cowboys on a cool morning in Oxnard, and the Turk greeted Jeff Mroz as the QB was not at practice, replaced by #16, Matt Baker, out of North Carolina. The Cowboys wore their throwback helmets today, white with the blue star. I asked Coach Pasqualoni before practice if we would see Bobby Carpenter on the outside any time in camp and he said "You'll see him there some". I asked him if they were just getting him versatile at all the positions and he said yes.
Terrell Owns didn't practice again and Terry Glenn also didn't practice. So your 1st team WR's were Patrick Crayton and, surprise, Sam Hurd. The kid has come a long way in camp. Andre Gurode is still at center, Flozell returned to the 1st team and Rob Petitti was back working some 2nd team RT behind Marc Colombo. Montavious Stanley got a shot on the 2nd team defense today.
Practice started with kickoff coverage formation, and Vanderjagt lined up with the 1st team. But they didn't actually kick the ball so I have nothing to report on that. After some half-speed 11-on-11 they did sprints and stretching.
They moved on to position drills where Anthony Henry and Nate Jones had to do push-ups for dropping the ball during drills. Over with the linebackers Coach Pasqualoni was instructing DeMarcus Ware on re-routing the receiver before dropping back into the zone for pass coverage. During the drills he was asking the LB's to get deeper drops when they were in the Cover-2 defense. The OLB's moved over to do some blocking drills against the TE's and Jason Witten had a bad day in that drill. Ellis smoked him, so they made him go again and Singleton beat him, he went again and finally got the block.
They ran the T/TE vs. DE/OLB and the RG/C/LG vs. NT/ILB's blocking drills today. Gurode held Ferguson up for a draw, Ware drove Fasano backwards and Flozell handled Canty. Petitti looked good on Coleman, Stanley held his ground against Al Johnson and McQuistan did well against Burnett. Fabini got a great driving block, and Gurode looked good against Thomas Johnson. But Fasano got beat again and Parcells chewed him out. Witten got a good drive against Ellis and Flozell handled Canty. Singleton stood up Petitti, Oliver Hoyte busted up Corey Procter, and Fasano had another bad block causing Parcells to yell at him "You may not be tough enough to play this game". Batiste destroyed Shanle and Bowen got right by Fabini.
They moved to the 11-on-11 drill with all running plays. Ellis stuffed JJ on the right side but Parcells was unhappy by the work of the interior defensive line. JJ got about 3-4 yds on a middle run, and Parcells called out to DL Coach Kacy Rodgers, "What the heck are you coaching over there, Kacy"? JJ went up the middle for a few more yards, but Bledsoe took so long to get the play off Parcells yelled at him, "Run the play, what are you going to do, cancel the game"? MB3 finished Bledsoe's series with a run up the middle.
Romo came on and MB3 got a good run behind a McQ and Procter block that Parcells loved. After another good middle run Parcells was yelling at Bobby Carpenter, "Square him up, 54", telling him to take on the blocker in the hole and square him up. Thompson ran through a big hole in the middle and then did it again, leading me to believe that Stanley was not doing a good job holding the middle of the line.
Henson's series started with a Thompson sweep to the right for good yards, and then Summers hit the middle but there was no hole. Summers tried the middle again for little gain and then they tried a sweep to the right but Boiman took on Procter's block allowing Shanle to flow in for the tackle.
After some special teams coverage drills they set up for FG's. I swear - but I admit it was hard to tell if some were just in or outside of the upright - that Vandy and Suisham looked like the missed almost every kick. They each had four kicks from anywhere between 30 to 45 yards and there was only one that I was sure was good. Suisham nailed the upright on one and so did Fredrickson who got in on a few. It wasn't good.
They followed with some 7-on-7 but I mainly watched the OL vs. DL blocking drills. Kosier handled a bull-rush by T. Johnson and Gurode handled Ferguson's bull-rush. Ratliff got good penetration on Rivera, Colombo put Coleman on the ground and Ratliff beat Tarullo. Al Johnson was good against Stanley, and Procter got bull-rushed by #64 (Davis, I think). McQ looked great against Hatcher, Batiste held his own against Canty and Stanley got a good push on Tarullo. Thomas Johnson abused Procter, Coleman beat Fabini and Ratliff got around Colombo.
Continuing with the drill Rivera handled Bowen, Gurode stonewalled Ferguson and T. Johnson got a good push against Kosier. Flo handled Hatcher, McQ was also good against Hatcher and Procter handled #64.
Over at the 7-on-7 drills both Romo and Henson looked pretty sharp.
Back to 11-on-11 Bledsoe started out with a dump to Sam Hurd, then hit Witten on an out as Fasano made a great block on Ellis. Bledsoe then threw a strike to Witten down the seam for around 20 yards. JJ ran a sweep but Keith Davis was in the backfield disrupting the play and Ellis turned it inside for no gain.
Romo came on and hit a dump-off to Curtis then hit him again in the flats, both for minimal gains. Thompson ran through a good hole off-tackle and Parcells could be heard saying to the offense, "Now we're starting to make progress here". Reeves then broke up a pass as Kincade held on for dear life while blocking Hatcher who broke through.
Henson came on and Kincade ran off-tackle for a small gain, then he hit Hannam in the flats. Parcells was yelling during the play "throw it", wanting Henson to get the pass out quicker and said "good job" when he did. Henson then threw to Hannam again in the middle and Shanle popped him right as he caught it. They finished with Summers on a sweep but Lenny Williams and Oliver Hoyte shut it down.
They moved on to a hurry-up drill with no defense. The object was to catch the ball, fall to the ground and everyone call time out. After one play Parcells asked Hurd, who had caught the ball, "Did you call time out"? When Hurd said yes Parcells asked, "Then why didn't I hear you"? No reply form Hurd.
They finished with redzone drills, but Bledsoe didn't get the 1st team lined-up fast enough so Parcells threw them off the field and the 2nd team came on. Romo tried a pass to Curtis but Roy broke it up, he also made himself do push-ups on the field before the next play for not intercepting the ball. Rector then dropped a pass, followed by a run by MB3 up the middle for a short gain. MB3 then tried the left side but Ware and Bradie James stopped it for no gain. Parcells wasn't happy with McQ's effort on the play and yelled "Let's go, left tackle". They tried a play-action pass but Newman wasn't fooled and had Copper covered. Polite end the series by catching one in the flats but Newman laid him out immediately.
Bledsoe and the 1st unit got back on the field and tried to hit Crayton in the corner of the endzone but A. Glenn had blanket coverage. JJ dropped a pass in the flats, then JJ ran through a huge hole in the middle and probably would've scored. Gurode got a pat from Parcells after the play for opening the hole. Fasano caught one in the flats, Sam Hurd jumped high for a catch that might've been a TD, then Hurd and Bledsoe were on the wrong page and Bledsoe threw a hitch while Hurd went toward the endzone.
Henson came on and Rocky Boiman blew right in for a sack on the first play. Boiman almost got him a second time but Henson hit Thompson in the flats. Henson then ran the ball on a roll-out but Boiman once again made the play. Parcells yelled across the field "Good play, Rocky." Hoyte filled the hole on a Thompson run, then Henson threw the ball incomplete.
That was the end of practice. I can tell you that the offense as a whole played better today and the line gave up only a couple of sacks and kept the QB's pretty well protected. They were also able to open some big holes on a few running plays.
There's another practice this afternoon so I'll post the report later tonight.