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Cowboys Training Camp News: Wheels Down In Oxnard, And Have The New Triplets Emerged?

It's training camp, folks!

You can tell it's training camp by the big football.
You can tell it's training camp by the big football.
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

They're leaving, on a jet plane . . .

And arriving in that unique Cowboys style.

The Cowboys have gone to Oxnard, where the players, coaches and cheerleaders took a little time to greet military families from Point Mugu, the station where they landed.

Training camp is officially under way! Well, practices will start on Thursday, with today dedicated to physicals and the conditioning test for anyone who was not there for the Jason Witten organized player-conducted test on Monday.

Dallas Cowboys' Rolando McClain Will Miss Training Camp Time Attending To A Legal Matter - Blogging The Boys

There was one bit of bad news, as the team found out Rolando McClain is going to have to be in Alabama to stand trial on disorderly conduct and resisting arrest charges. With the obvious travel time involved, he will likely miss a few days.

Sources: DT Henry Melton will be cleared to open Cowboys training camp | Dallas Morning News

In the good news department, it looks like the Cowboys' biggest free agent acquisition is going to be ready to roll in Oxnard.

The defensive tackle must pass Wednesday's physical before his status becomes official. But club officials don't anticipate any red flags to appear in Melton's return from a torn anterior cruciate ligament. He was held out of team drills during the off-season, but never once missed a rehabilitation session or suffered a setback.

Cowboys' trio part of new core - Dallas Cowboys Blog - ESPN

With DeMarcus Ware gone and Tony Romo and Jason Witten sadly getting closer to the end of their careers, who will be the new leaders of the team? This article proposes three names that make a lot of sense, Dez Bryant, DeMarco Murray and Tyron Smith.

Only eight of the 90 players on the current training camp roster were on the team when Jason Garrett took over as interim coach in 2010. Bryant is the Cowboys' most dynamic player. Smith is their best player, regardless of position, taking that spot over from DeMarcus Ware. Murray is one of the most important. 

In January, all three played in their first Pro Bowl.

Could they become the next version of the famed triplets of the early nineties? That will depend on whether they can be part of a championship team or not. But at the moment, they look to be a good core for the future of the Cowboys. - Cowboys Signal-Callers, Different But Same

KD Drummond takes a look at what has changed over the past three years with who calls the offense for the Cowboys, and what has not. Despite the highly publicized "stripping" of the playcalling duties from Jason Garrett and putting it in Bill Callahan's hands, the team did not see any fall off in production, and actually improved in a place or two. Now, we see what Scott Linehan will do with it all.

Garrett clearly didn't agree with Callahan's way of running his offense, yet the unit was able to stay the course. What happens when a coach who Garrett fully supports takes the reins? A coach that has a habit of stepping up the pace of the offense and cranking out plays at a rate near the top of the league?

How Much Will Tony Romo’s Back Injury Affect Him?

The guys at are cleverly wrapping up their series of questions leading into training camp just as training camp starts. On this one, they all agree that things appear to be pretty good right now.

Bryan Broaddus: In talking with various members of the Cowboys front office, medical staff and even Romo himself - to a man they all feel confident that the back is in the best shape possible going into this camp. With that being said, I am confident that we should see the same quarterback under center that we have seen in these last 12 seasons. If his back were to give him a problem, it would be with his mobility and that would affect a huge part of his game.

Dallas Cowboys Five Wonders: Barry Church's importance - ESPN

Todd Archer goes the opposite direction, and proposes five unanswered questions about Dallas. One of them gets right to the heart of what it will take to make the defense a success this season.

I've been asked this a few times on chats and on Twitter: Who leads the Cowboys in sacks? I don't have a good answer. I think I've said Henry Melton once and perhaps Jeremy Mincey. Maybe even DeMarcus Lawrence. I've jumped around because I don't know how anybody would know the answer. But I wonder how many sacks the leader will have this year. The last time the Cowboys did not have a defender with at least eight sacks was in 2002 when Greg Ellis had 7.5.

Last Time Out: 2013 Analysis Of The Cowboys CBs

This is another series of posts that is winding up at the mothership. It looks back at what all the cornerbacks going to Oxnard did last season, wherever they played. The synopsis is provided by Broaddus.

Scout's Take: There are several battles that are going to take place during camp, but the one to really keep an eye on is the one between Orlando Scandrick and Morris Claiborne. Neither player appeared to give an inch during the OTA and minicamp practices. Claiborne finally looks healthy and confident to compete. Scandrick is not going to roll over and allow him to have this job. What is also interesting to watch is that these defensive coaches have not just come out and given Claiborne the job because he was once a first round selection. If he is going to start at this right corner, he is going to have to earn that job.


I didn't see this covered anywhere else but Twitter, so I wanted to include this.


Mailbag: Do You See NFL Roster Sizes Expanding?

This is something I have wondered about, as the injury toll seems to mount each year. It may be tied to the NFL's future plans, as David Helmon opines.

David: I think the main way this comes about is if the league goes through with its idea to add regular season games. If an NFL season is, say, 18 games, rather than 16, the league might allow for a large roster to compensate for the added difficulty of the season. Personally, I'd rather have a smaller roster and a smaller season than the alternative. It's already a stretch to ask these guys to put their bodies through the ringer for four preseason games, 16 regular season games and then a possible playoff run.

Brandon Weeden excited for camp, will miss son - ESPN

The now unquestioned backup quarterback to Romo is experiencing one of the things that the Cowboys put their players through as many teams are dropping the training camp idea altogether.

His wife, Melanie, gave birth to a boy, Cooper, almost three weeks ago. 

"That's going to be tough, being away but at the same time I'm looking forward to practicing somewhere else," Weeden said. "I always heard about Oxnard and the setup and the fan base that travels and the people that are out there already who are Cowboys fans. I heard it's first class, top-notch. I'm excited about that part and the weather, getting out of that 100 degrees is always nice. But having the little man around would've been nice."

So-so season for Cowboys could mean so long for Garrett

This topic will probably get discussed almost daily until it is finally resolved, one way or another.

A 29-27 record, three consecutive 8-8 seasons, and out of playoffs is not what Jones had in mind when he fired Wade Phillips and promoted Garrett midway through the 2010 season.

They were supposed to get better under Garrett, not worse. Phillips gladly pointed this out in a tweet in March: "Jason Garrett is tied with Wade Phillips for 56 games as the @dallascowboys head coach. Phillips: 34-22; Garrett: 29-27. #suprisesMe"

Phillips tried to distance himself from the negative comment, saying in a subsequent tweet that he was surprised that the two had coached the same number of games with the Cowboys. That Phillips has a much better record, including two division titles and the franchise's only playoff win in the past 17 years through the same number of games is a downright stunner to Jones.

Too Much Garrett Kool-Aid In Cowboys Blue - CBS Dallas / Fort Worth

For a dissenting opinion, here is a take from a writer who has fully embraced the process.

Even though everybody was calling for Garrett's head or Tony's head...Jerry calmly said NOT YET. From that point on I have looked at Garrett differently.

He is a project, a friend and somebody I think Jerry trusts to grow and mature.

With that respect, I think I like some of the things Garrett has done that we haven't yet seen turn on the field, but I'm hopeful we will this year.

Vegas gamblers betting hard against Cowboys in key games, Super Bowl | Dallas Morning News

I hope you like pulling for the underdog, because it looks like Dallas is going to be the dog in a lot of games, at least for the time being.

All 11 Cowboys games available for early betting have seen the line move away from them. Dallas is also down to 50-1 odds to win the Super Bowl after betting opened at 40-1.

Camaraderie Builds At Player Organized Conditioning Test

The story about the conditioning test held at Valley Ranch the day before the team left for Oxnard continues to be fleshed out. Apparently, the staff had decided the conditioning test was not worth the physical toll it has taken in the past. While Brandon Weeden gave Jason Witten the credit initially, Barry Church talked like this was a group thing.

"The coaches had decided not to have one this year, but we as players, we decided we needed for our team to do it, kind of a camaraderie thing," Church said. "We went out there at Valley Ranch, ran our little conditioning test, and almost everybody showed up and it was a great time."

Dallas Cowboys Interactive Roster Builder 2014 - Build Your Own Cowboys Roster - Blogging The Boys

If you have used this in past years, you know how much fun this thing is. If you haven't, you need to take it for a spin. Just be warned: It doesn't make figuring out who to keep and who to cut any easier, just more efficient.

Finally, just because he already has something of his own cult following around here:


This came out late.

For those that don't know about him, he was one of the "other" running backs that made the Landry era so great. Dawn Macelli has a post on his career.

Follow me @TomRyleBTB

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