You knew the big story heading into training camp would be Adam Jones and how he plays after being out of the game for a year. One thing is certain after just a few days of practice and that is Adam Jones is having a blast.
Every chance he gets he jumps the line to go up against T.O. in coverage. He is all over the field during practice and his enthusiasm is sure to inspire his new teammates. Even though he is getting burned by Owens on a semi-consistent basis the main thrill for Jones is just being out on the field with his new team.
After spending last season on an NFL-imposed vacation for repeated violations of the NFL personal conduct policy, Jones might as well be a kid playing his first year of pee wee football. He is just happy to be running around on the field with his teammates.
Just "being out here, just being alive" is a victory in itself, said Jones.
"The mistakes are behind me," Jones said. "I am looking forward to the future."
AJ also says that while he is hot to go up against Owens he also seeks out Patrick Crayton who presents a different challenge as a reciever to cover.
Owens and Crayton could not be more different receivers, though both are physical.
"Pat's going to run perfect routes, and the ball is going to be there on whatever step it takes," Jones said. "T.O. is a lot bigger, a lot [more] physical. It's always a great deal to get a one-on-one against Pat and T.O. so you can work all of the dynamics of your game. I'm here to compete. I'm not here to prove anything. I'm here to compete."
And to round out our Adam Jones daily coverage, DC.com has a good Q & A session with the cornerback. Here's a preview:
Do you feel like you're back in your element?
JONES: I don't think I'm back in my element yet, but I'm getting there. I've got a lot of fine tuning to do with my hands and my feet. There's a lot of work to do. I've been out of this game for a whole year, but it's coming back. By the first regular season game, I want to be able to rock and roll. I think I'm preparing myself to be able to rock and roll.
Hat tip to Billito for the link in his fanpost.
A sense I have gathered from the comments sections is that some of you are concerned about what seems to be a number of errant throws by Tony Romo. Maybe we can get Grizz to give us what his true impression of Romo so far, but remember that he is just giving us a play by play of what is happening. Most accounts by the media that is present say that Romo has looked ultra sharp and focused so far in camp. Todd Archer has some good things to say about his work ethic.
Here's one of the reasons why Tony Romo has improved. Even in one-on-one drills when he knows he is throwing to his left, he will start his eyes over to the right to simulate a read. It's a minute detail that Romo has picked up recently. He also is adept at using his eyes to moving defenders. He kept his eyes to the right sideline, all the while knowing he was going to find Sam Hurd in the middle of the field. But by looking wide longer, he created a larger window to throw.
And while Romo is having a pretty good camp so far, Terrell Owens is just going insane.
During one-on-one drills with wide receivers vs. defensive backs, Owens went against Jones. Before the play, two things unfolded: Tony Romo stepped in and took Richard Bartel’s turn for the star-studded duel and Jones baited the crowd as he lined up against Owens.
Owens then popped free on a double-move against Jones (one he knew was coming), breaking free and catching a would-be touchdown leaving Jones behind. Owens spiked the ball in the endzone and then called for more crowd noise waving his hands and putting his hand up to his ear just a few feet away from the fans.
Owens has been the most explosive player on the field so far, not bad for a guy who is supposedly the aging receiver that needs help stretching the field on the other side. I understand the desire and concern for another big time receiver on the team, but with Owens (who I feel is the best receiver in the game today, sorry Randy Moss) and Jason "No Helmet" Witten catching passes from Tony Romo there is no reason why the passing attack can't be as good or better than it was last year. And that was the best attack in franchise history. Timmy Mac over at the DMN blog tends to agree and says that Owens will do just fine being that stretch the field guy.
Would it be nice to get a blazer to start opposite T.O.? Sure, but don't count on that happening over the next month. And the Cowboys' passing attack will be just fine without that guy.
"Until we get somebody to do that," T.O. said, "I'll be that stretch-the-field guy."
"When he said to me at the Senior Bowl that he might be interested in coming, I was really surprised, but excited about it," Phillips said. That excitement arose because Phillips knew exactly what Campo, who previously spent 14 years with the Cowboys in positions ranging from secondary coach to head coach, could bring to the table.
Phillips has already noticed marked improvement in what has become a Cowboys secondary loaded with talent.
I cannot even begin to convey how excited I am about our secondary this year. With the amount of talent we now have back there combined with an outstanding secondary coach, the sky is the limit on how good they could be this year.
Bobby Carpenter is trying to rebuild his reputation this year during camp, something that was hurt during the preseason game against the Vikings last year.
Carpenter had to defend himself. He wasn't performing like a player worthy of the 18th pick of the 2006 draft. During his meeting with Pasqualoni, Carpenter revealed that he played the Vikings game with nerve damage, which he suffered in the preseason opener against the Texans.
"I talked to them about not playing before the [Vikings] game, and I went out there," Carpenter said. "It's something I regret doing now, and it was something I talked to Coach Pasqualoni about. I wasn't scared, I just didn't have a lot of certainty. I had a lot of pain down my arm and my neck. Once that subsided, I started playing pretty well."
Right now Carpenter is third in line with Justin Rogers playing in front of him, something that will need to be watched as camp progresses. I always said that he just needs an opportunity to play and he will show us what he can do. Unfortunately when he got that chance last year he couldn't make the most of it. The preseason games this year will show what Carpenter's ultimate fate with the Cowboys will be.
One quick BTB note: We are all still doing our best to get used to the new SBN 2.0 format but one thing we can definitely do better on is recommendations. If someone works hard and puts together a good Fanpost, give it a "rec". If a post gets enough then it is pushed to the top of the list and we can keep commenting on it and others can read it. This way good work doesn't just get pushed to the bottom of the pile.