The second practice of the day was shorts and shoulder pads only. But there was still some hitting. It’s getting kind of interesting out there, the defense are taking their shots where they can get them, as you will see later. They started with some positional drills as usual. Terry Glenn actually dropped a WR screen pass during these warm-ups, to everyone’s surprise. He rarely drops anything out there. They also run a screen pass during these drills, but I’ve yet to see them execute it well in the 11-on-11 drills. The receivers were also working on their over-the-shoulder catches while the linemen spent some time popping the sled.
After stretches they went to 7-on-7 on one end and OL/DL blocking drills on the other. As promised, I watched the 7-on-7. Romo threw to Hoyte in the flats but he dropped the pass. Romo connected with Glenn on a short pass in front of Bradie, and then went back to Hoyte on the other side, but the pass was low and Hoyte couldn’t quite bring it in. Romo next dropped a beautiful pass to Witten who was on a corner route, the pass floated in right past Burnett’s outstretched arms. Romo concluded his session by hitting Fasano on a short pass.
Johnson threw short to Austin, short to Fasano, then short to Austin again. Matt Moore tried to hit a receiver but Quincy Butler came in and deflected the pass. On the next pass, Hamlin came in and deflected it away.
Romo came back and hit Witten short, then missed Witten a little deeper but Bradie had good coverage. Next, Keith Davis deflected a pass. Brad Johnson then dumped one off to TT, followed by a pass that Alan Ball almost intercepted but dropped, so he dropped to the ground and gave the customary push-ups.
Next up they practiced FG’s, and it was a bad day for Gramatica but a good day for Folk. Gramatica hit three short ones, but then missed three longer ones, the longest about 45-yards. Two were wide left and the other hit the right upright. Folk had the same set of kicks from the same distances, and he nailed all six. Wade Phillips was giving the good signal like a ref on the first 2 or 3 that went through.
They moved to punt formation and the first team punt unit across the line was Burnett, Spencer, Ladouceur, Hoyte and James. The back three protectors were Elam, Davis and Carpenter. Catching the punts again were Newman, Rector and Butler. Only Rector bobbled one of the catches.
They went back to some 7-on-7 on one side and had the o-line going against the linebackers on the other end. This included the OLB’s coming off the edges and the ILB’s simulating a blitz. Ware beat Molinaro, then L. Davis used one hand and popped Carpenter in the facemask and sent Carpenter to the turf. It was probably a penalty for hands to the face, but it was still funny. Did I mention Davis is strong? Kosier had no problem with Harrington, McQ let Spencer get to the inside but recovered enough to hold him off the QB. McQ then was fine with Obomese. Carpenter managed to get some penetration on Steve Franklin, Blair Phillips went right by Joe Berger, and Glymph managed to get inside McQ. Marten was good against Spencer, but Spencer spent a little too much time dancing before starting his rush. Free was good against Phillips, then Free totally destroyed Saldi. Carp did OK on Berger, Marten stoned Obomese, and Franklin did well against Harrington. Kosier manhandled Carpenter, Glymph beat McQ to the inside, then Free held his own against Spencer. Darilek was fine with Burnett, then in a shocker, Carpenter busted out a spin move against L. Davis that worked! Molinaro didn’t have a problem with Glymph and Ware blew right past Franklin.
Finally, we got to some 11-on-11 that was a lot of passing. Romo hit T.O. on the sidelines in front of Henry. JJ tried a run up the middle but Ferguson snuffed it. They threw a hitch to Terry Glenn and Roy came flying by for the tackle but grabbed Glenn’s facemask and almost jerked his head off. Roy then missed an easy INT on a bad pass by Romo intended for Witten, so he did the customary push-ups. MB3 tried a run to the middle but there was too much traffic.
Johnson handed off on a sweep to the right but Burnett made the tackle. Fasano dropped a pass in the flats but Carpenter had come around the edge and might have gotten the sack. By the way, the second unit 4-man line was Hatcher, Spears, Bowen and Carpenter. On the next play Bowen broke through for a sack.
Matt Moore threw to Jerard Rabb who made a good catch and managed to hold on even though Quincy Butler tackled him high and almost ripped his head off. Then Battle ran up the middle for an OK gain.
Romo came back on and Butler missed a solid deflection on a pass that made it through into T.O.’s hands for the catch. Glymph abused Molinaro and ran through for a sack, but they let the play run and Romo threw an INT to Courtney Brown. MB3 tried to cutback a run meant to go to the right but Bradie stayed at home and made the tackle. Then came the play that brought out the crowd to life. Romo hit Austin going across the middle but Roy Williams arrived at the same time and blasted Austin, I mean really blasted him. But Austin held on to the ball. Owens was jabbering at the defense for a minute after the play, obviously upset about the defense taking liberties on the receivers. Romo concluded by throwing a swing pass to TT but Burnett was right on him and it went nowhere.
Johnson came in and was immediately sacked by Ware, then he dropped the QB/center exchange, followed by a nifty run by TT, but Carpenter ended up making the tackle. Ratliff broke through with some pressure on the next play but Johnson dumped it to Jerheme Urban. Bartel replaced Johnson and ran a draw to Battle which didn’t get much, then he overthrew a receiver to end the day.
A couple of items, the defense does seem to be taking their shots on the offensive players, maybe a little more than they should. I would hate to see someone get hurt. Also, when the o-line went against the linebackers in the blocking drills, the o-line was getting a lot of hands up to the facemask, something they need watch.