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The Valley Ranch Review: Friday’s Rookie Mini-Camp Update

The DMN reports that S/CB DeAngelo Smith came up limping after covering wideout Kevin Ogletree, but the injury didn't seem serious.

Some other happenings in today's afternoon practice courtesy of the blog:

Sixth-round TE John Phillips isn't a great athlete, but he has a knack for getting open. He's very precise on his cuts and is a clever route runner. Case in point: He got behind third-round ILB Jason Williams on a seam route by lulling him to sleep with a little hesitation. The pass was incomplete after Stephen McGee threw a rope, which Williams was able to deflect, instead of putting over Phillips' shoulder.

Undrafted FB Asaph Schwapp got behind Williams on a wheel route. As LB coach Reggie Herring said this morning, Williams is raw.


Sixth-round ILB Stephen Hodge looked much better in coverage during the afternoon practice than he did this morning. He had several deflections on passes to the flat.

TE Rodney Hannah, a two-year practice squad vet, looked good catching the ball again. He made a leaping grab over fifth-round S Mike Hamlin on a post route.

The defensive coaches congratulated fifth-round S/CB DeAngelo Smith after he broke up a pass to Manuel Johnson. But it sure looked like defensive holding. Smith made a nice break on a slant to break up Stephen McGee's pass to undrafted WR Julian Hawkins earlier in the practice.

Quarterback Stephen McGee spoke to about his first day at camp.

"Well, it's a lot of learning obviously, just trying to get a feel for the new plays, new routes and the new receivers," McGee said. "There's a lot of good coaching out there with Coach Wilson and Coach Garrett. I'm just trying to get into the rhythm. Obviously, everyone is new. There's a new system, new terminology. We're just trying to get adjusted and get the timing down."

QBs Coach Wade Wilson already likes what he sees in McGee.

"I was impressed with him, the way he handled it mentally and took everything from the classroom to the field," Wilson said. "He threw the ball real well. I was very impressed with his mechanics. I was real impressed with his presence in the huddle. He conducts himself very well on the field. He's got an aura about him. You can tell he is very confident and has some fine leadership qualities."

Nick Eatman sums up today's practice here.

Tom Orsborn takes an in-depth look into the Cowboys' crop of rookies, finding no bad character issues.

Orsborn's article on David Buehler sheds some more light on the kicker's athleticism.

The Star-Telegram profiles LB, Brandon Williams, who discusses his work with kids in the south Fort Worth area and his relationship with late Broncos' CB, Darrent Williams.

The Cowboys have even found some backups to long-snapper L.P. Ladouceur. Both linebacker Matt Stewart and rookie free agent TE Jamar Hunt have experience with deep-snapping.


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