One day removed from the second preseason game, let's round up some stories from today's interwebbing.
-- Rookie right tackle Tyron Smith has been meeting most expectations placed on him. Smith has yet to surrender a sack in the preseason, according to this ESPN article; an intriguing stat despite the perceived vanilla nature of defensive playcalling this time of year. Smith has faced a variety of pressure, but realizes he still has plenty of room to grow.
"Trying to get my footwork down and keeping my hands back and my head back and not getting beat on the edge as much as I was last time," Smith said of what he was working on.
Regarding the zero sacks allowed in the preseason Smith said, "it's basically the general point: Don't give up the sack. You always got to work for that. I will do it as long as I can... Don't give up a sack."
--Two running backs of major importance to the Cowboys 2011 plans are set to make their debuts on Tuesday, Tashard Choice has been out with a calf strain, and has been the subject of trade rumors among Cowboys fans this entire offseason. He'll get a chance to show his worth in practice on Tuesday. The Dallas backfield will also get their first look at third-round pick DeMarco Murray, who will make his practice debut after missing time with a strained hamstring suffered during the lockout. [DMN] If Murray proves ready for an early role, could Choice be displaying his talents in the team's efforts to see if their is trade value?
Choice would appear to be the third back on the depth chart for now. Normally, a third back plays special teams, something Choice doesn't really do, so it will be interesting to see how the Cowboys handle the practice snaps.
-- Want to know why undrafted rookie Phillip Tanner looked so comfortable in a pro football stadium? He's spent gameday's under the Cowboys employment since he was a kid. Tanner used to work as a vendor at Texas Stadium. [DMN] Tanner has been outperforming last years UDFA runner Lonyae Miller, who despite showing off in camp, hasn't had it translate to the games as of yet.
-- All of this running back talk, and all four players sit firmly behind Felix Jones. Jones has consistently demonstrated top tier ability in his opportunities early this preseason, averaging 8.6 yards per touch. The San Antonio Express takes a look at the challenge Jones faces to carry a heavy workload throughout the season, all the way into December.
-- Injury update from Sunday night's game. Marcus Spears hurt his groin and is expected to be out one to two weeks. Jason Hatcher is expected to return and replace him once practice resumes Tuesday, Also expected to return, ILB Keith Brooking will join the inside linebacker rotation as well. There still is no update on CB Mike Jenkins, who's stinger has kept him out for two weeks now. Complete list of injury updates can be found on DMN, here.
-- One of the things noted about Rob Ryan's exotic schemes is not only that he rotates multiple linebackers in and out of the lineup, but he also does this with his safeties as well. Gerald Sensabaugh showed in Sunday night's game that he may be capable of being used heavily in those rotations as a defensive playmaker. Sensi forced a fumble from rough-and-tough Mike Tolbert. Sensabaugh was also robbed of a pretty interception by a ridiculous rule that says a player is in bounds if his toes touch and he falls over the sideline but is out of bounds if it's his heels touch the same sideline after his toes are in. [ESPN]
-- Head coach Jason Garrett was not very happy with the teams performance Sunday night, which is to be expected after the first string had a turnover and the second and third teamers were unable to put points on the board.
"What I told the team after was, without having seen the stats, I bet we had more yards," Garret said. "I bet we ran for more yards. I bet we threw for more yards. I bet we were better on third down. But ultimately it comes down to we turned it over three times and they didn't turn it over at all. We need to do a better job taking care of the football. We need to do a better job getting it away from them. That is statistic No. 1 in the NFL and we lost tonight. I think that was a big reason why."
"we live in reality. There was some things that happened that exposed us. There were a number of mental mistakes. We need to play better. There are some things that happened tonight that are mistakes that we shouldn't have made. There were some good things that happened but there were a lot of things that need to be addressed." - Star Telegram
The team will look to address those things starting on Tuesday.