The Cowboys were in shells again today, and started out with a mediocre practice performance before the fight (described in this post) took place then things definitely heated up. Before practice began JJ, Witten, Romo and TT engaged in a game of hackey-sack with the football. JJ was the best of the four. All the regulars who are injured were out, but Colombo and Flozell practiced. No T.O. as you already know.
The first drills were WR vs. CB and 9-on-9 run scrimmage. I watched the 9-on-9 run scrimmage. JJ had a nice run to the outside, Spencer held his ground on the next JJ run and turned it inside, then MB3 came on and had an OK run to the left side. Hoyte laid a nice block on Obomese to open up a middle run, Polite then crushed K. Davis with a block to give MB3 room, then TT had a huge hole on the left for a big gain. Joe Berger pulled around the edge to lead another run, then Deon Anderson actually got a run and did a good job of bouncing it to the edge for nice yards. Battle tried a sweep but Khari Long made the stop, JJ tried the middle but B. Phllips stuffed it, then JJ picked up some good yards before Abram Elam made the stop. MB3 made a nice cutback into a hole but Bradie came up and stopped it after a short gain. Anderson put a big block on A. Ayodele but Ratliff and Spencer closed down the hole. Then Bradie made a wicked stop on a Polite run.
They went to FG’s next and Gramatica hit his from 23, 33, 38, 43 and 50 yards while Folk appeared to do the same according to those around me, but I thought the 38-yarder might have been wide. But I wouldn’t guarantee it. They went to kickoffs and Gramatica hit the 5 and 1-yard line while Folk hit the 3 and 10-yard line.
7-on-7 was next. Romo threw one behind JJ for an incompletion, then threw one away that actually hit John Saldi. He overthrew Witten with Roy in coverage, the connected with Urban on a slant. He finished by overthrowing Austin but it might have been a miscommunication on the route. Johnson hit Tony Curtis short, the connected with Adam Bergen on a crossing route, followed by another short pass to Curtis.
Moore hit Rabb short, Jefferson dropped a ball in his hands, then Spencer dropped an INT. Romo subbed in and hit Witten deep and hit Hoyte in the flats. Brad connected with Bergen underneath and Crayton on a short in pattern.
They broke for punts and Urban was the main punt returner and looked OK, but not very sure of himself. He dropped the last one kicked to him. By the way, McBriar is good.
They came together for 11-on-11; Romo threw to Witten who dropped the pass, Hurd dropped a pass, A. Glenn dropped an INT and Romo threw a little behind Austin who dropped it. (Yeah, it was an ugly series). Finally, Romo and Austin hooked up on a quick slant. Johnson was sacked as Glymph went right around a TT block, Curtis jumped offsides, then Ware went around the edge for a sack. Johnson finally completed a pass to Bergen in the flats who had beaten Spencer.
Moore started with an off-target pass to Jefferson before Carpenter came in on a blitz and got a sack. Romo came on and that was when the fight described in the previous post broke out. After that, the offense seemed to wake up a bit as the defense was killing them in this 11-on-11 drill. Romo threw a nice pass deep to Austin, Courtney Brown was the only guy even close to Austin on the play. Fasano made a beautiful diving catch over the middle, then Austin caught one in front of J. Thomas. Brad came on but Spencer and Ratliff got good pressure to mess up the play, then Canty and Ware led a jailbreak sack. Next, Spears broke loose in the backfield but Battle made a great block to give Johnson time to hit Jefferson, who held onto the ball even though Bradie punished him. Bartel came on and hit Damarius Bilbo deep.
They backed the ball up to the offense’s 40 and had the 1st-team offense go against the 2nd-team defense on a drive to the endzone. JJ started with a run to the left and gave the defense a little extra-curricular action and Watkins and K. Davis were jawing with him after the play. Witten caught a pass, Austin caught a deep in pattern, then MB3 ran to the left for not much. Romo lofted one to MB3 in the flats, hit Crayton over the middle, and MB3 tried a middle run but Ratliff closed the hole. Hurd caught one close to the goal line and Watkins knocked him down so Hurd popped up and was yapping in Watkins’ ear hole. (Yeah, Watkins was in the middle of all the feistiness in the late part of practice). Romo finished by throwing to Witten but N. Jones broke it up.
Johnson came on with the 2nd-team offense against the 1st-team defense. They tried a sweep to TT but it didn’t get much, he threw to TT in the flats but Newman was right there for no gain, then A. Glenn almost got an INT but Richardson played DB and broke it up. Brad threw one off-target to Urban deep for an incompletion, then TT tried a middle run, before Ware got another sack. Spears came through the line and blew up a Battle run, then Canty got in the backfield to stop a Battle sweep. On the final play of practice, Battle took a handoff and was headed for the endzone where he met up with Hamlin who wasn’t quite in position to make the tackle. Battle ran over Hamlin and rung his bell and Hamlin had to be walked off the field by the trainers. I’m hoping he’s OK.
That was it. What started out as a mundane practice with some sloppy play by the offense turned into a battle royal with players jawing at each other, a fight and some hard hits. This team really needs to play another team instead of hitting each other so they can get out some pent-up aggression out.