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Dallas Cowboys News & Notes: More Injuries, More Byron Jones, And More Love For Beasley

Latest Cowboys headlines: Another day, another running back gets hurt; what to do with Byron Jones; the search continues for someone who doesn't love Cole Beasley.

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

While the team searches for the right attributes to hold down the running back job, one important trait is just being on the field.

Cowboys Training Camp 2015: Joseph Randle Latest RB To Get Hurt - Blogging The Boys
As the Cowboys attempt to fill the shoes of DeMarco Murray, the team was hoping to get a look at four different running backs this off-season - Joseph Randle, Darren McFadden, Lance Dunbar, and Ryan Williams.

All of them have gotten hurt.

While Williams is no longer in the mix, the injuries to the other guys aren't serious and they should be able to just rub some dirt on it and be fine by the time any important games come around. But for now, prepare yourself for another round of "which RB should the Cowboys go out and get?"

Brandon Carr has successful hand surgery, expected back in camp Tuesday | Jon Machota, Dallas Morning News
All went well with Brandon Carr's surgery on his hand.

Carr had right hand surgery in Dallas and is expected to join the team back in California on Tuesday. It’s yet to be determined if Carr will travel to San Diego for Thursday’s preseason game.

Team Takes Conservative Approach With Dez (Hamstring), Other Vets | Rob Phillips, Dallas Cowboys
The Cowboys are just taking it slow with everyone. I mean, what's the rush?

With Bryant nursing a slight hamstring strain here in early August, expect the Cowboys to ensure the All-Pro receiver is 100 percent ready to return.

No timetable for Rolando McClain's return - Todd Archer, ESPN
While better health may be around the corner for these other guys, there is still no definitive return date for Rolando.

"Obviously, you want those guys out there practicing," Garrett said. "Sometimes it’s hard to measure that. He’s been dealing with a couple of different things. The big thing with him is the conditioning part, then putting your cleats on and doing the on the field work. He hasn’t practiced, didn’t really practice very much throughout the offseason, hasn’t practiced up to this point in camp but we do think he’s making progress."

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones: ‘I’m not looking at slowing down any time soon’ | Jon Machota, Dallas Morning News
Even Jerry Jones is taking it slow as he recovers from recent hip surgery. He was unable to attend Charles Haley's Hall of Fame induction ceremony because he's trying to reduce how much he flies around.

"These things are built for the freeway. They’re built for some real road action. They’ve got a lot of dances left in them. I’m sure having them programmed with a good musical aspect to them. I think there’s going to be a lot going on in my life. So, no, I’m not looking at slowing down any time soon."

Jones is listed as day-to-day.

Speaking of Charles Haley...

Cowboys hope Hardy follows Haley’s script for Super Bowl | Clarence Hill, The Star Telegram
If you haven't had a chance to check out Charles Haley's HOF speech, I strongly recommend it. His golf story is hilarious.

The Cowboys knew all was not right with Haley and that he was a tough player to deal with. But they traded for him anyway in what owner Jerry Jones calls one of the three greatest off-schedule moves that helped turn the Cowboys into three-time Super Bowl champions in the 1990s.

Nate Newton talks about Haley's significance.

"Charles Haley was the reason we won our first Super Bowl," former Cowboys guard Nate Newton said. "He was our first Super Bowl. We needed that defensive impact much like this team needs now. It needs somebody that is going to command two or three guys in a certain situation. That’s what they hope for with Greg Hardy."


Cowboys spotlight: Why DT Tyrone Crawford regarded as one of team’s top practice players | Rainer Sabin, Dallas Morning News
Tyrone Crawford continues to set a good example.

What he has done in training camp: Crawford has flashed at times during training camp, making an interception in team drills and showing strength and agility in one-on-one sessions with offensive linemen. Crawford always seems to be hustling, which is why he is regarded as one of the Cowboys’ top practice players.

Why Cowboys linebackers need to excel at coverage, not blitzing | Rick Gosselin, Dallas Morning News
The "Goose" gives his take on what should be expected from the linebacker position in the passing game.

Question: With the abundance of seemingly good pass rushers in camp and the special talent, quickness and hip swivel that Randy Gregory appears to possess, do you think the Cowboys might try him at an outside linebacker position on 3rd downs to make the offense keep their tight end in the game.

Gosselin: The Tampa 2 scheme of Marinelli relies on the front four supplying the pressure. That allows the other seven defenders to squeeze daylight out of the passing lanes. This is not a blitzing scheme. The linebackers need to excel in coverage.

Mailbag: Best Position For Byron Jones? Vaughan The 3rd Quarterback Again? | Dallas Cowboys
David Helman and Rob Phillips talk about where they think Jones would fit best.

Byron Jones has flashed some really good plays in training camp as a cornerback. Given his versatility to play safety as well, which position is more important to this defensive scheme? Which position would maximize Byron's potential in this defense?

David: It’s early in the process, but right now, I think my answer is "neither." I’m not sure Byron is going to unseat any of the established starters as a rookie. Instead, I think the Cowboys may feature him prominently as a dime back.

Rob: Jones really does have traits for both positions, though – he’s big and rangy enough to play safety and he has the look of a big, physical corner.

Babe Laufenberg: Keep your fingers crossed on 3 things that will determine success of Cowboys defense | Dallas Morning News
Babe talks about some key factors influencing the success of the defense, including newcomer Byron Jones.

Question: How has the secondary looked so far? Is Byron Jones the real deal? ​

Laufenberg: He certainly has the potential to be. Had a long, informative conversation after the scrimmage with secondary coach ​– and a good one — Jerome Henderson. He talked about the need for Jones to stop thinking so much and just play. Think about that for a minute. Typically, coaches are screaming at players incredulously, "What were you thinking!?" So that is a good problem to have, that a guy is thinking too much.


Cowboys seek to replace DeMarco Murray’s pass blocking as well as his carries and yards | Charean Williams, The Star Telegram
One of the key components of the team's running back will be their ability to protect Tony Romo in the passing game.

"It’s a great challenge," Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. "There’s a lot of responsibility that comes with that, and the consequences of not doing that well on Sunday are significant. So you really have to have someone you can trust, who understands defenses, understands calls, physically knows how to block guys because those are significant plays and defenses do such a great job in this league in challenging you in so many different ways schematically that if you’re not quick mentally to be able to handle those different things and you’re hesitant again the consequences of that are significant for your football team."

Cowboys 2015 Training Camp: Time To Get On The Gus Bus? - Blogging The Boys
Our own Tom Ryle takes a look at the most recent stray cat that showed up at his doorstep, but he adamantly proclaims that he is not feeding it.

He also serves as a good illustration of the truth behind the "any back could run behind Dallas' offensive line" meme. When put that way, it clearly is a questionable assertion. But when modified to "any back with sufficient talent that matches the scheme can run behind the Dallas offensive line", then there is a lot more validity. Johnson looks like a player who has those skills so far.

I think this new and improved meme is spot on.

Will Cowboys search for punt returner land on Cole Beasley? | David Moore, Dallas Morning News
Cole Beasley is like Bugs Bunny on the field - he's everywhere. He's been doing it all this training camp, so it shouldn't be surprising that he's got special teams coordinator, Rich Bisaccia pretty excited.

"What do I think of him?’’ Bisaccia asked rhetorically. "I love him. I absolutely love him. Period. Just love Beasley. "No matter what he does, he’s going to do it really well and fast and quick. You can’t touch him in a phone booth.’’

Chasing around Cole Beasley is a lot like Rocky Balboa trying to catch a chicken. It may not look very hard, but in the end he's going to get away from you and you're just going to end up looking ridiculous.

Cowboys TE coach Mike Pope: This needs to be a breakout year for Gavin Escobar | Dallas Morning News

Mike Pope speaks about the progress of Gavin Escobar.

"I think he’s made a good deal of physical progress over this offseason. I think maybe he made his biggest commitment to working with Mike Wolski in the weight room and those guys. He looks better; he looks more physical and he looks like he’s got a bigger frame with more muscle mass on it. A good part of that’s because a lot of our catches are arriving at about the same time as the defender does. If you’re not physically strong enough to absorb that blow and hang onto the ball, then the quarterback is not going to throw it to you.

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