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Cowboys News: Getting Ready For The Chargers, Lots Of Players To Watch

Plus words of wisdom from the real Senator, a fire in Oxnard, and a look back at how Roger Staubach was much better in a fight than Geno Smith.

Next up, the Chargers!
Next up, the Chargers!
Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Jason Witten: Defending NFC East champion Dallas Cowboys ‘haven’t accomplished anything’ | | Dallas Morning News

Let's give the first word today to the senior statesman of the Dallas Cowboys. Jason Witten and Dez Bryant were interviewed by Michael Irvin, and both are not interested in talking about last season. Witten said it best.

Witten talked about how last year's team had an edge. Even though they experienced some success, they can't lose that edge.

"The standards are a lot higher than that," Witten said. "The tradition and what that star and guys like you [Irvin] and even before created, we haven't really been a part of that. We understand that. We embrace it. But we haven't accomplished anything."

Cowboys flip practice script - Dallas Cowboys Blog - ESPN

It was a different routine on Tuesday because, if it has somehow escaped your attention, there is a football game involving the Cowboys going to San Diego to play the Chargers on Thursday.

"The idea there is to kind of simulate a Friday in the NFL during the regular season so you come in, get your work in the morning and then they'll have a little time off," Garrett said.

Dallas Cowboys vs. San Diego Chargers: Betting Odds, Preview For Week 1 Preseason Game

Betting odds? If you are putting money on a preseason game, you may have a problem.

Dallas Cowboys rookie DE Randy Gregory ready to make preseason debut at San Diego | | Dallas Morning News

Randy Gregory slid in the draft because of his off field issues, but so far all is good for him.

"I'm ready to show what I can do on the field," Gregory said after practice Tuesday. "I'm ready to obviously hit somebody else besides my teammates and show the plays we're learning. Hopefully I can go out there and not make any mental errors and get off the ball.

"It'll be kind of cool playing against another team and being in front of some of the guys who you've looked up to for so long and now I'm playing on the same field as them."

Cowboys defensive end Gregory makes up for size with 'heavy hands' - Dallas Cowboys Blog - ESPN

There has been a lot of discussion about how much Randy Gregory weighs, but he makes up for it with his punch (the New York Jets jokes will come later).

"It's just physical; just heavy," defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli said. "When you strike something, you're just heavy with it. Explosive. Heavy. He's very strong in terms of that."

Said coach Jason Garrett, "It's a really descriptive term, and we talk about it a lot, really with almost every player on our team. When someone who has heavy hands strikes you, you feel it. Some guys might be strong in the weight room, but they're not heavy-handed guys."

Dallas Cowboys DE Greg Hardy to see action versus San Diego Chargers - Dallas Cowboys Blog - ESPN

This will be interesting to watch because it has been almost a year since Hardy saw action on the field. But don't expect to see very much of him.

"The idea there is to kind of simulate a Friday in the NFL during the regular season so you come in, get your work in the morning and then they'll have a little time off," Garrett said.

Former Tryout Gus Johnson Tries To Seize Opportunity With RBs Injured | Dallas Cowboys

I may be guilty of over-hyping Gus Johnson, who may be more realistically trying to earn a spot on the practice squad. But for a UDFA who didn't have a shot at all until the very start of training camp, that would be huge and could lead to more opportunities down the road. And he does bring something to the table that has been mentioned as a need.

"I like to get the dirty yards, put my head down," the 215-pounder said. "I'm not afraid of contact. I've always been a bigger kid, so contact is something I kind of like."

Joseph Randle takes part in limited part of practice - Dallas Cowboys Blog - ESPN

Johnson is getting his chance because Joseph Randle, Darren McFadden and Lance Dunbar are all nicked up and none are expected to see action (although Jason Garrett refused to absolutely rule Randle out), but it looks like all three may be back on the field when camp practices resume on Saturday.

Dallas Cowboy true, Michael Irvin has run-game questions - Dallas Cowboys Blog - ESPN

The Cowboys think they can replace DeMarco Murray's production with a committee approach, but Irvin doesn't agree. His logic is a bit hard to follow, though.

"He said, ‘OK, one guy had 1,800 yards, but if three guys get 600 yards, does that work?' To be honest with you, no, because what it doesn't do is tell the defense to come in and try to stop the run so we can just filet you like a fish and leave you in the alley," Irvin said. "You see what I mean? That's the difference. So you would have to establish that you are a great running game and a great running team and three backs at 600 yards won't establish that. I'm just giving you the reality."

Dallas Cowboys' returner search will be wide - Dallas Cowboys Blog - ESPN

One thing that tends to happen in preseason games are a lot of punts. Kickoffs, maybe not so much. Dallas has a lot of players it would like to see in both roles, and this may be an area where there is something to be learned.

Going into the first preseason game Thursday against the San Diego Chargers, Bisaccia has a number of players he wants to see. An ankle injury likely will keep Lance Dunbar, the lead kick return option, out of the Chargers game, but he has J.J. WilcoxLucky WhiteheadReggie DunnTyler PatmonNick Harwell and Lache Seastrunk as options.

For punts, he has Cole Beasley and Whitehead as options. Like Jason Garrett, Bisaccia won't rule out using Dez Bryant as a punt returner depending on time and score of regular season games.

Broaddus: Hardy's Arrival, Strong DT Play Among 12 Thoughts From Monday | Dallas Cowboys

Bryan Broaddus always has interesting observations. One was on how the depth on the interior of the defensive line is developing right along with the ends.

Jack Crawford continues to thrive as that under-tackle on this defense and is making a solid case to be that first guy off the bench behind Tyrone Crawford. In the team run and play action period, Crawford managed to quickly defeat Ronald Leary off the snap before Leary even had a chance to react. This was not the first time where Crawford has put himself in a position to finish a play with a sack. He has become a nice rusher as well when it comes to the two-man games and his ability to apply pressure.

Second-Year DT Chris Whaley Suffers Torn Achilles At Monday Practice | Dallas Cowboys

It looks like it will be another year before Chris Whaley gets his chance, if ever.

Chris Whaley is on his way back to Dallas after suffering a torn Achilles on Monday evening.

Whaley was carted off the field in the middle of the Cowboys' Monday practice, causing concern that the team had suffered its first major injury of training camp. Those concerns have been confirmed.

Whaley will be going on IR.

Three Dallas Cowboys who deserve to be in the Hall Of Fame | Dallas Cowboys

Darren Woodson got his boost from being selected for the Ring of Honor. Thomas Duck adds Harvey Martin and Chuck Howley as players he thinks are overdue for a selection to the Hall in Canton.

Bob Sturm’s Cowboys roster watch: Who’s on the bubble? Who’s a long shot to make the team? | | Dallas Morning News

A nice review of all the players currently on with team and their chances for the 53 man roster.


There was also a dose of strange or just different news.

Fire near Dallas Cowboys practice facility sends fumes of smoke over fields, catches attention of coach Jason Garrett | | Dallas Morning News

The weather in Oxnard is a lot better than the triple digit temperatures Dallas has been suffering through, but it is extremely dry out there. That was brought home by a fire near the practice facilities.

The fire was about one-half of a mile from the Cowboys practice facility and didn't provide an immediate threat to the Cowboys practice fields or the team hotel here, but the risk is there because of the extremely dry conditions in California.

Video: Cowboys’ rookie CB Byron Jones takes a cake to the face | | Dallas Morning News

Just leaving this here for your consideration.

Geno Smith, meet Roger Staubach, another sucker punch training camp victim | | Dallas Morning News

The Geno Smith story is just bizarre. Starting quarterbacks getting knocked out for extended periods is dysfunction at its highest. Back in the day, it almost happened to Roger Staubach, but the outcome was very different.

The infamous "sucker punch," as most former Cowboys refer to it, occurred two days after Longley and Staubach had fought over a derogatory remark Longley made about receiver Drew Pearson.

Staubach eventually said he'd "knock those Bugs Bunny teeth" out of Longley's mouth, and Longley was up the challenge.

"They put me in charge of distracting [assistant coach] Dan Reeves so he wouldn't break up the fight," said former quarterback Danny White, who was in his first season with the team. "I started trying to make stuff up to talk to him about and then we looked back up the hill and Roger was just whaling on Clint."

The 30 best logos in American sports | For The Win

And number one - The Star. Of course.

NFC East Round Table | Football Is America

And finally, I defend the honor of the Star against writers from Bleeding Green Nation and Hogs Haven.

Follow me @TomRyleBTB

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