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Dallas Cowboys News & Notes: Early Reactions To The Chargers Game

Latest Cowboys headlines: Reactions to Thursday night's preseason game against the Chargers; rookies making plays; which players got hurt?

Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

The first live action game is in the books and now it is time to hear what everyone thinks.

Cowboys Drop Preseason Opener To Chargers By A Final Score Of 17-7 - Blogging The Boys
Our own Tom Ryle summarizes the Cowboys first preseason game, including a well put together drive with contribution from a few different guys in the spotlight.

I mentioned on Twitter before the game that Vaughan and Devin Street both needed to step up their games after having not done as well as expected so far in camp. On Vaughan's second series of the game, they started to click. And Gavin Escobar was also a big part of the offense. They drove inside the 20 in short order, and we got to see La'el Collins and Gus Johnson combine on a good run play. And Vaughan and Street combined again to overcome a sack given up by the second team O line for Dallas, converting a third and 17 to the five. That set up Gus Johnson to drive it in for the touchdown.

Cowboys QB Brandon Weeden on botched snap in shotgun: ‘It was a disaster after that’ | David Moore, Dallas Morning News
The Cowboys first drive looked pretty good, and then it didn't.

"I was going to throw the slant over to my right, and Travis snaps it back there pretty good,’’ Weeden said. "It just went through my hands. It was coming in pretty good, and I didn’t catch it. "It was a disaster after that. I just need to make the catch.’’

Yes, this game did matter, and so did Cowboys’ miscues | Clarence Hill, The Star Telegram
Taking care of the ball is one of Jason Garrett's most significant points he tries to emphasize, but some people weren't listening.

The glaring issue against the Chargers was turnovers. The Cowboys had two in the first half — a fumble by backup quarterback Brandon Weeden on a perfect shotgun snap from center Travis Frederick on the first drive of the game and a fumbled punt by rookie receiver Lucky Whitehead in the second quarter. Taking care of the football is Line 1 in Garrett’s world, and those plays can’t be and won’t be dismissed.

Garrett unhappy with turnovers, sloppy tackling, lack of scoring | Clarence Hill, The Star Telegram
Redball is nice guy, but if you ever want to get on his bad side, just keep giving the ball away.

"The stuff we need to work on is obvious," Garrett said. "The first unit did a good job on the initial drive on offense. They made a critical fourth down. And the next play we snap the ball though the quarterbacks hand. They take over in the red zone with a chance to go in and score the touchdown. It’s about the ball the ball the ball. We didn’t take care of it there.

5 thoughts on Cowboys preseason opener: Notable performances and what will bother Jason Garrett most | Jon Machota, Dallas Morning News
Machota gives his take on some key performances of the night, including how the new kids did in their very first snaps in the NFL.

Top rookies. Randy Gregory didn’t play in the first quarter. But the second-round pick was on the field throughout the second and third quarters, recording his first sack shortly before the start of the fourth. Byron Jones was on the field often in the first half, leading the team in tackles with five solo during the first two quarters. He played corner the entire time. La’el Collins had one of the game’s best highlights, blocking two San Diego defenders as Gus Johnson rushed for a 5-yard score. Overall, a solid night for what some consider Jerry Jones’ three first-round picks.

Bob Sturm: What impressed me, what I want to see more of after Cowboys’ first preseason game | Dallas Morning News
Sturm was also impressed with the rookie offensive lineman.

Who impressed you or disappointed you?

"I think La’el Collins was fantastic. I think he is already one of the five best linemen on the roster. I think it will be a little while before the Cowboys promote him to starting left guard but I don’t think there’s any question about his quality, so you love that.

Key storylines: Devin Street reappears; good & bad for return man Lucky Whitehead | Rainer Sabin, Dallas Morning News
The teams top punt returning prospect had a nice gain, but then he endured a stroke of bad...misfortune.

Whitehead’s gaffe happened in the second quarter after fielding a punt and turning up field. Whitehead gained 19 yards and then lost the ball when he was hit by linebacker Kyle Emanuel. The Chargers pounced on it in Cowboys territory.

After Quiet Camp, These 4 Finally Shined Under the Bright Lights | Nick Eatman, Dallas Cowboys
On the defensive side of the ball, the teams new free agent CB made a good first impression.

The guy I liked was Corey White, the cornerback who gets overshadowed because of names like Byron Jones and Mo Claiborne, not to mention the two starters Scandrick and Carr. But with three of those guys out with injury, White played a lot and made some plays. He nearly came up with two interceptions where he was fighting for the ball.

Dallas Cowboys Defensive End Randy Gregory Gets His First Sack | Dallas Cowboys
Video: the Cowboys rookie pass rusher wasted no time making his presence known.

Cowboys hold Melvin Gordon in check in Chargers debut | ProFootballTalk
While it seemed like several Chargers running backs were running all over Dallas, one player didn't get in on the fun.

The San Diego Chargers rookie was held to just 11 yards on six carries and only played in the first half before donning a baseball cap for the rest of the night.

Why Cowboys have yet to add a veteran running back | Jon Machota, Dallas Morning News
Everyone has their own thought about when the Cowboys might look into acquiring a veteran running back. Machota gives his take.

Question: Should the Cowboys bring in other RB, maybe a vet? why not try out Thomas or CJ. I don't think I have to much faith in McFadden..and Dunbar well he is who is still fighting to be a back up.

Jon Machota: I think they're waiting to see what they have in McFadden before they pull the trigger on making a move. But if McFadden is unable to overcome the injuries or he doesn't play well, I think they'll add a veteran. They need three quality backs.

Cowlishaw: Randy Gregory analysis; Why I don't see Cowboys signing another running back | Tim Cowlishaw, Dallas Morning News
Cowlishaw has a different perspective on the free agent running back quandary.

Question: Should the Cowboys go ahead and sign another veteran RB before the Texans grab one they might want now that Arian Foster is out?

Cowlishaw: I think if teams felt Chris Johnson or Stephen Jackson or Pierre Thomas could really help, they would be signed. I don't expect the Cowboys to make a move for a veteran back.

Ryan Russell's Dallas Cowboys dream about to come true - Todd Archer, ESPN
I once had a dream that I had lobster claws for hands. It was very disconcerting, especially when I had to use the bathroom. But while something like that is somewhat unrealistic, Ryan Russell's dream has a much better shot of coming true.

Rod Marinelli has been riding him hard, but the kid keeps pushing through.

"At the end of the day tough love is still love," Russell said. "Sometimes you’ve got to listen to the message and maybe not the way it’s said. But sometimes you need a kick in the rear to get going. Obviously he’s yelling. He knows. It’s not just that he expects more out of me. It’s that he knows there’s more to give. I mean, I love it. I love the passion, the intensity and it’s something I know he’s going to make me better."

Update On Thursday’s Injuries; Dunbar & McFadden Expected To Practice Saturday | David Helman, Dallas Cowboys
Assessing the damage - who got injured?

Rookie ball carrier Gus Johnson suffered an AC joint separation during his 13-carry, 35-yard effort in the 17-7 loss. Johnson said he’ll be fine and that the injury isn’t serious, though it remains to be seen what kind of plan Cowboys coach Jason Garrett will implement for him.

Cowboys injuries: TE James Hanna could miss a week or two; WR Dez Bryant may not be ready to return to practice | David Moore, Dallas Morning News
The Cowboys come out of this one relatively unscathed.

James Hanna suffered a sprained knee in Thursday’s loss to San Diego that could keep the tight end out of practice for the next week or two.

After much anticipation to watch these players finally perform, game one is done. Back to Oxnard they go.

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