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Dallas Cowboys 2009 Training Camp: Practice #3

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The second practice of the day had the players in shells only. Stephen Hodge and Tim Anderson were still on the sidelines rehabbing. Watch for Charley Casserly on the NFL Network soon, he was at practice and spent forever talking with Jerry Jones on the sidelines.

It looks like the standard pattern this year is that special teams will be the first thing they work on. They ran some special team drills then did some punting. Felix Jones, Terence Newman, Patrick Crayton, Willie Reid and DeAngelo Smith were catching the punts. The gunners were Orlando Scandrick, Kevin Ogletree, Michael Hawkins, Alonzo Coleman and Courtney Brown.

The went through the positional warm-ups and team stretching, then went back for a very long session of positional drills. I didn't notice this before but the WRs and RBs had the resistance-bands hooked to the football, one guy would jog and the other guy would tug on the band trying to make them fumble. I liked that, but the best part of this session was the secondary working on covering the bunch formation (three receivers bunched on one side). This formation has killed the Cowboys over the past few years, good to see they were taking a lot of time working on the coverages. The rest of the groups were doing things like the DL working on stunts, the WR/QB working the passing tree, etc.

More below.

They broke up into 7-on-7 and OL/DL blocking drills. I watched the OL/DL; they did every match-up twice in a row. Colombo held up pretty well against Brandon Williams both times and Bigg looked OK against Spears but gave up a little too much ground once. Rat made a quick move on Gurode and got by and the other time was pretty much a draw. Kosier handled Igor twice, Ware got a good bull-rush on Flo once, but Flo pushed Ware wide on the second try. Victor Butler went right around McQ twice, it wasn't pretty for McQ. Ryan Gibbons was OK once on Hatch, but couldn't sustain his block the second time. Procter did OK with Junior, but gave up a little too much ground on one attempt. Holland stuffed Bowen the first time, but he lunged the second time and Bowen beat him. Free gave up ground to Steve Octavien the first time but came back on the second attempt and put Octavien on the ground. Spencer went too wide on McQ but had better luck the second time, although McQ was much better than before. Marcus Dixon bull-rushed Travis Bright into the QB, the next time Bright got a good initial pop but couldn't sustain it. Procter fought Jonas Seawright to a draw, but the second time Seawright did a nice spin move to get around him.

Derrick Robinson (who?) cooked Greg Isdaner once and then got a nice bull-rush the second time. Michael Turkovich (who, again?) did well twice against Butler. The coach called in Bigg to take a rotation at LT, Bigg was pretty good against Ocatvien both times. Justin Rogers beat Colombo once, but Colombo was good the second time. Bigg faced off with Rat and gave him a nice initial pop but Rat recovered well, the second time Rat was able to beat him. Bigg then took a turn with Hatcher and did well. Spears took a rotation at NT and was pretty good against Gurode, but the second time Gurode stuffed him. Kosier finished up with two nice efforts on Igor.

They came back together for a long session of 11-on-11. Romo was in first but Crayton immediately had a false start and was replaced. MB3 took a hand-off and found a big crease up the middle. They tried a screen to MB3 next but Sensabaugh shot through the blocking to stop it. MB3 had to bounce one outside when the middle was clogged for a short gain. Felix tried a sweep but Carpenter was able to slash through to get him quickly. Felix was lined up outside for a pass, but he and Romo had a miscommunication. Romo threw what looked like an out or hook pass, Felix was running straight up field and it was incomplete. They had another false start, but I couldn't see on who, then they tried a bomb to Stanback but he couldn't make the catch.

Kitna started with a bubble screen to Ogletree but Mickens and Butler were there to stuff it. Ogletree then beat Hawkins on a short pass but turned it upfield for a big gain. Hurd caught a deep pass between the LB and the safety over the middle, Kitna then had to dump it to John Phillips because of pressure, and he finished with a draw to Coleman - Spears had great penetration but it was unclear if he could've made the tackle or not. McGee came in and threw in the flats to Coleman, then Lattimore tried a middle run that was stuffed, then he tried a pitch outside but Jerome Carter had good pursuit.

Romo was back in and threw a swing pass to MB3 but Jason Williams had good pursuit. Butler broke up a slant intended for Roy, then Hawkins broke up another pass intended for Roy. T-New made a tackle on a swing pass to MB3, Felix tried a run but Ware and Rat weren't having that, and Romo closed with a nice 20-yd or so completion to Hurd in front of T-New. Kitna was next and tried to hit Stanback deep but Courtney Brown had good defense, Stanback then caught one over the middle just beating the outstretched arm of Carpenter, then Choice had a nice gain running wide to the left side. Matt Stewart made a nice stop on Choice, then Butler put pressure on Kitna forcing basically a throw-away. Rudy Carpenter was on and handed to Coleman but that was stuffed by Butler after Derrick Robinson had excellent penetration. They tried a draw to Lattimore that went nowhere, Ratliff then broke through for a sack, and it ended with an attempted screen but Bradie and Brooking ate it up.

That was it. Overall though, the practice was kind of sloppy with too many mistakes and some dropped passes.