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Cowboys News: Workout No Shows, A Running Back Who Wants To Come To Dallas, And John Mara Is Still Evil

The big news was who wasn't in Valley Ranch for the voluntary workouts, but there is a lot more to cover today.

The Senator representing at the ACM Awards, held at AT&T Stadium.
The Senator representing at the ACM Awards, held at AT&T Stadium.
Cooper Neill/Getty Images

Cowboys Voluntary Offseason Workouts Start Today; Dez Bryant, Orlando Scandrick Not Attending - Blogging The Boys

Our own Dave Halprin covered the essentials, and reminded us of an important detail concerning all this.

So when reading these stories, keep in mind most of this is business as usual and that these workouts are voluntary.

Cowboys Absentees Dez, Scandrick Talk ‘Contract Dispute’ - CBS Dallas / Fort Worth

Of course, there will be a lot of discussion of the situation until it is resolved. While Orlando Scandrick certainly looks like he is making a play for more money, he is not negotiating this in the media.

105.3 The Fan's Mike Fisher spoke to Scandrick today, who said "No" to my question about long-term plans to skip workouts. But the team's top cornerback added, "I have no comment for you there" when I asked him about logical speculation that his absence has to do with a desire to re-negotiate a contract that guaranteed him $9 million but pays him just $1.5 million this year — and can cause him to lose a third of that if he doesn't participate in 90 percent of offseason work.

Jean-Jacques Taylor: Dez Bryant's offseason of discontent continues - ESPN Dallas

JJT puts most of the blame for the situation with Bryant on the team, and makes a concise case for why they need to get it fixed.

Coach Jason Garrett raves about Bryant's maturity as a player, from his route running to his practice habits. He's the only dude on the roster who touches every area of the locker room, from practice-squad players to defensive players to his fellow offensive starters.

He's clearly the soul of this team.

Cowboys 'Need To Trust Dez' Says Drew Pearson - CowboysHQ

The original 88 offers his old team a bit of advice on how they need to deal with the current wearer of that proud number.

"They've gotta trust him," Pearson said. "He's made great strides off the field in his personal life. They need to believe that and trust in him and take the reins off him. Let him be a man. At his age, 26, he deserves that opportunity. The Cowboys just need to lighten up on him a little bit."

As birthday approaches, Tony Romo's work continues - ESPN Dallas

Romo is looking forward to the first offseason he will be fully available to work. The team will have to make decisions about how to manage his workload, but even with off days and such, there is a lot he can accomplish that he has had to forego the past few years.

He views a throwing motion the way a golfer does a swing. The mechanics are sound but adjustments are attempted in the offseason to see if they will hold up under pressure. If they work in minicamp and training camp, Romo will use them in the season. If they don't, he won't.

Report: Rams Nearing Final Deal To Spend Part of Training Camp With Cowboys In California - Turf Show Times

Our own OCC covered the reasons why hosting other teams is a good idea, but here is a (very brief) look at how the other side sees it.

Miami RB Duke Johnson: I fit Dallas' offensive scheme - NFL.com

Draft prospects usually don't name teams they would like to play for prior to the draft. But Duke Johnson didn't hesitate to name the Cowboys as his top choice.

"In college, we ran the same outside zone scheme," said Johnson, who also said his familiarization with the scheme means "I can run it, basically, in my sleep."

Johnson said he ran the same scheme in high school at powerhouse Miami Norland, where the Vikings used it to win a state title.

"That system fits me well," he said.

2015 NFL Draft: Boise State RB Jay Ajayi's knee a concern for NFL teams - CBSSports.com

The Cowboys spent a lot of "recruiting" time with Ajayi when he came to Valley Ranch. Perhaps they are not one of the teams that have developed concerns about his knee.

Boise State running back Jay Ajayi is one of the most talented and productive running backs in the 2015 NFL Draft class. But the long-term durability of his right knee is a "strong" concern, according to several league sources.

Bob Sturm’s NFL draft series: FSU’s Goldman reminds me of Nick Fairley; Texas’ Brown a difference maker | Dallas Morning News

Sturm looks at some defensive tackle prospects. When I remembered that OCC had tweeted out that Xavier Cooper had a private workout with the Cowboys, I was very interested to see what the Sturminator had to say about him.

In this year's crop of large and able-bodied defensive linemen, there are a few who jump out of their film as candidates who would fit the style of what Rod Marinelli is doing in Dallas, yet might be available in Rounds 2 and 3. Cooper is that type of player. He fits the two things valued in Dallas: he has a very high motor and the ability to penetrate and make a play behind the line of scrimmage. He is as fast as any player in this group, but also has exceptionally short arms, which will not help his draft spot.

Bob Sturm’s 2015 NFL Draft profile: What I see in Maxx Williams, TE, Minnesota | Dallas Morning News

Just because we are all so anxious to see the Cowboys pick another tight end . . .

There may not be many elite tight end prospects this year, but this one in particular is a real impressive kid who looks like he can be a red zone threat and an open field issue.  The idea of balancing up your offense is what makes teams target versatile threats like Williams at this spot and the lack of tight ends in this draft could move him off the board relatively early in the mix.  He sure appears to be the type of talent that can grow into something pretty special as his career moves on.

Five to Fit: Linebackers Who Can Bolster Injury-Plagued Position | Dallas Cowboys

Linebacker is a position that the Cowboys might take anywhere in the draft. Could there be another Anthony Hitchens out there?

Ben Heeney, Kansas - Heeney's stock soared after he tested first among all combine linebackers in the 20-yard short shuttle, 60-yard shuttle and three-cone drill. Heeney's a bit undersized at 230 pounds, but he was a productive three-year starter for the Jayhawks, tallying 127 tackles as a senior. A guy with a knack for finding the ball and making plays, Heeney will likely be a mid-round pick.

Giants owner doesn't think Dez Bryant made the catch | Dallas Morning News

Of course he doesn't. He also doesn't think collusion is collusion as long as you can get away with it.

Giants owner John Mara, a key figure on the league's Competition Committee, still doesn't think it was a catch:

"Regular speed, you're not quite sure whether he made the catch or not," Mara told Giants.com. "In fact, I would suggest that it looks like he did not make the catch."

Gee, I guess the idea of "incontrovertible visible evidence" is another little detail he conveniently overlooks.

Yes, I am keeping the hate alive.

NFL to unveil 2015 game schedule on Tuesday night - ESPN

With a multi-hour TV spectacular. Sometimes the league seems so full of itself.

Marijuana testing window opens today | ProFootballTalk

For those who get it, you have to appreciate the humor of starting the pot testing window on 4/20. Oh, well, at least this does seem like a worthy subject for Mike Florio's journalistic talents. (That hate thing applies here as well.)

He does point out the teensy little flaw in the whole program.

So, basically, a player not in the program needs to stop smoking on or about March 20 and to quit until after taking his once-per-year test.  After that, it's smoke 'em if you got 'em until the next March 20.

Dallas Cowboys’ NFC East rival shows off new weapon as Eagles welcome Tim Tebow | Dallas Morning News

Presented without comment. (Laughing doesn't count as a comment, right?)

CowBuzz: Romo, Witten, Aikman Give Cowboys Flavor to 50th ACM Awards | Dallas Cowboys

It was an awards show, but there was no doubt whose house was hosting it. And present and past players were not the only ones showing the flag for America's Team.

Oh, and if you don't already realize why it is so much better to be Tony Romo than you, here is one more reason.

Follow me @TomRyleBTB