Bob Sturm’s morning after: Cowboys rookies put on a show | Dallas Morning News
Sturm reminds us that when when we evaluate performances from the first preseason game, we should do it carefully and minimally, and that "context is crucial." Sturm then proceeds to write up a fairly extensive review of Thursday's game, with a strong focus on the 2015 rookie class. An excerpt:
As I said on draft weekend (and I am sure others did, too), the Cowboys appear to have 3 1st round picks in this draft class and that type of haul of talent could be the type of thing that tips the scales in their favor for years to come.
Teams don’t get to take 3 of the Top 15-20 players on their board. I can tell you with certainty that the Cowboys believe they did just that. To be honest, I thought Jones was the 3rd best of the bunch, and in watching much of training camp with my naked eyes, I still feel that Collins and Gregory are far more eye-catching.
Collins says a pancake block is a lineman’s touchdown | Drew Davison, The Star Telegram
The short sequence below, courtesy of WFAA's Mike Leslie, has made its way through the social networks.
Collins broke off the line and charged hard into Chargers linebacker Chi Chi Ariguzo, taking him to the ground 7 yards down the field. Collins celebrated, although he didn’t know an ensuing black eye would come as a result of the play.
"I think when I landed on top of the guy, my face went into him," Collins said. "I started wiping the grass out of my eye. Hey, man, that comes with the game. I love it.
"For me, that is my touchdown. I’m just trying to go out and give the best effort that I can play in and play out for my team."
WATCH: Cowboys' La'el Collins demolishes Chargers with blocks - CBSSports.com
But the block above wasn't the only one making the social media rounds.
Dallas Cowboys Byron displays versatility - Todd Archer, ESPN
Archer notes that the Cowboys continue to test Byron Jones all over the field.
As he has during training camp practices, Jones was all over the field. He played outside corner. He played in the slot. He played over the tight end. He played some safety. The Cowboys did the same with Corey White.
"That’s one of the things we wanted to do, play a lot of man-to-man coverage out there, wanted to see those guys cover, cover outside receivers on the National Football League in game situations," coach Jason Garrett said. "They made some plays but I think our guys made some plays as well. Both [White] and Byron were playing the outside corner for the early part of the game, wanted to get each of those guys to play safety and we were able to do that early in the second half. Each played a series there. So thought it was good night for both those guys win terms of the work they got but we have to go back watch tape and see how well they did."
Randy Gregory laments sacks that got away - Todd Archer, ESPN
Cowboys rookie defensive end Randy Gregory had a sack against the Chargers in his first preseason game, but knows he could have had more.
"Looked like he was getting off the ball well, looked like he was up the field a lot early on in the game, and then as the game wore on he did a better job leveling off his rush and getting to the quarterback," Garrett said. "He was around the quarterback a lot."
Moore: OK, it's one preseason game ... but Cowboys' trio of top draft talents was impressive | Dallas Morning News
Moore warns not to put too much weight on one preseason game, but with that caveat out of the way, he points out that the debuts of Bryon Jones, Randy Gregory and La’el Collins did not disappoint.
Jones led the Cowboys in tackles. Gregory picked up a sack and came close on another occasion. Collins made a key block on the team’s lone touchdown and drove a defender all the way to Chula Vista on another play.
Bob Sturm’s morning after: Cowboys rookies put on a show | Dallas Morning News
The second excerpt from Sturm's excellent article is about Damien Wilson's impressive NFL debut.
Overall, the 2015 Draft class showed well. Collins is the bonus pick, but you also saw Damien Wilson continue to impress as the 4th round linebacker from Minnesota. The Cowboys scouting department seems to have an eye for linebackers these days after nabbing Anthony Hitchens from Iowa in the 4th round in 2014 and now this Wilson kid in 2015.
Wilson shot into the gap last night on a play that made you think about how well he is settling in as the backup Will LB to Sean Lee and how he could be called upon to play quite a role this year. Surely, the Cowboys hope he doesn’t have to come right in and do much more than special teams, but I really like how Wilson has looked at camp.
Eight observations from Cowboys’ opener | Babe Laufenberg, Dallas Morning News
Laufenberg adds some nice words about an under-the-radar draft pick.
I thought the tight ends were very good. Shame that James Hanna injured his knee. But this group had 9 of the 21 receptions. The more I see of Geoff Swaim, the more I like him. And I liked him from the minute I first saw him. I am still scratching my head about how a Texas team that managed a whopping 59 yards of total offense against Arkansas in the Texas Bowl could see fit to throw this guy 10 passes during the entire season. Head scratcher.
Jameill Showers impresses in Dallas Cowboys first preseason game - Miner Rush
The UTEP Miners SB Nation blog writes that Showers battled a killer southern California bug, but played pretty well in his NFL debut.
Showers was a victim of two drops that would have inflated his passing numbers, but all reports indicate his performance was solid, and his journey to the NFL is getting more interesting by every rep he gets whether its under center or on special teams.
Jameill Showers was 5/11 passing for 40 yards, ran for 18 yards on two carries, recorded a special teams tackle, and played through a huge bug that landed on him and made him Twitter famous last night in the Dallas Cowboys first preseason game.
GIF: Cowboys QB Jameill Showers has enormous bug land on him pic.twitter.com/OceKrMkJpc— The Cauldron (@TheCauldron) August 14, 2015
Corey White reminds Cowboys not to forget about him with his play Thursday | Charean Williams, The Star Telegram
White stood out with two pass breakups that nearly were interceptions. Not a bad thing when the cornerback room is suddenly crowded with quality options.
"We’re very deep in the secondary," White said. "There’s so much talent here already before I even got here. A guy like me, I just come in here and do what they ask me to do, special teams, whatever they ask me to do to make the roster. I’m just here to help."
Twitter mailbag: Gus Johnson not ready to be the guy - Todd Archer, ESPN
We love underdog stories like little else. Unfortunately, Gus Johnson is unlikely to be one of those stories, Archer explains.
McFadden is set to practice Saturday for the first time. Joseph Randle and Lance Dunbar aren't far off from returning either. So the Cowboys will want to see what they have with their top three guys before making a decision. If they sign a running back it will be for depth purposes and nothing more at this point.
At the risk of being called a hater, I thought Johnson did some good things on Thursday, however, he still averaged just 2.7 yards per carry. The line wasn't the only reason he gained just 35 yards on 13 carries. He is a nice story, all undrafted free agents are, but he won't be counted on to help the Cowboys' run game this season. The goal is the practice squad for him at this point. There hasn't been a "wow" moment in camp where he looks like he could be the lead back. So go ahead and fire away at me for that take.
Gus Johnson’s play with Dallas Cowboys cut short with future in jeopardy - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas
If you were wondering what Johnson's TD celebration meant, Laura Sadler of KTRE has the lowdown.
The former Lumberjack and Gilmer Buckeye ended the night with 35 yards for 13 carries, along with his 5-yard touchdown for Dallas in the second quarter. After crossing the end zone, Johnson was sure to throw up SFA’s signature "Axe 'em Jacks" hand signal.
NFL Issues Memo Reminding Teams to Try Not to Fight | Scott Crisp, NBC 5 Dallas-Fort Worth
With a number of training camp and locker room fights in the news, the NFL would like to remind its teams that fighting is frowned upon.
According to the Associated Press, NFL executive vice president of football operations Troy Vincent issued a memo to all 32 teams on Friday that names fighting as a point of emphasis for officials this preseason. That means officials will be looking for it and, per the rules, handing out 15-yard penalties to those found guilty of the infraction. If it is deemed to be flagrant, the player will be ejected from the game.
Mr. Mince released his Cowboy Anthem on Friday
Jeremy Mincey teamed up with DJ London to create a Cowboys song. Check it out: