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Cowboys News: Standout Players From Rookie Minicamp

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A final wrap-up of rookie minicamp along with a selection of the latest Cowboys headlines.

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Standout Players & Notes From Cowboys' Rookie Camp - Bryan Broaddus,  Dallas Cowboys
This is a must-read summary of rookie minicamp, in which Broaddus lists 19 players that caught his eye over the weekend. Here's what he wrote about 4th-round pick Ryan Switzer and UDFA Lucas Wacha.

Though most of these drills are against air, it is clear that Ryan Switzer has a feel for how to execute a route. His quickness off the snap once he gets moving is impressive. His burst is noticeable. I also came away impressed with how easily he catches the ball. For a guy that doesn’t have much length, his ability to adjust back for the ball made me think of a much taller player. For him to be at full speed and reach back is a rare trait. It was interesting to see him being not only used on the inside but outside as well.

Wyoming linebacker Lucas Wacha was super active on tape this past season. I would keep an eye on him as a possible weakside nickel linebacker in this scheme. His coverage skill and awareness give him a shot to play a couple of different roles, which might help him make this team undrafted.

Dallas Cowboys rookie defensive tackle Joey Ivie seeks roster spot - Matthew Martinez, Fort Worth Star-Telegram
Rookie defensive tackle Joey Ivie is wearing Bob Lilly’s old number. Given the Dallas Cowboys’ need along the defensive line, the Florida product will have every chance to make the team.

"It’s an honor to even wear this number," Ivie said. "He was such a great player, and definitely a guy I’d say that I look up to. It’s just cool to be able to wear this number."

With veterans on hand, Dallas Cowboys rookies put in place - Todd Archer, ESPN

With the veterans in camp, Jason Garrett hopes the learning pace quickens for the Cowboys' rookies.

"We never want to ease anybody into anything," Garrett said. "Obviously, there is a transition period for these guys, they just got here [last Thursday]. The biggest thing we try to do is lay out the expectations for what we want in all parts of our football team, again, how we meet, how we walk through, how we practice, how we conduct ourselves on and off the field. We try to be abundantly clear with that and then we start giving them information. You start with the basics, you start with the fundamental stuff, but you move quickly and you hold them accountable to what that information is."

Did the Cowboys just find their next Tony Romo? - Rick Gosselin, SportsDay

Gosselin explains why Cooper Rush is an intriguing prospect who might be worth developing.

Quarterbacks who started four years in college and threw at least 1,300 career passes are worthy of long looks because they already have been exposed to everything the college game has to offer. It's a much smaller step from NCAA Saturdays to NFL Sundays for them.

Cooper Rush fits that profile. The Cowboys signed him as an undrafted free agent out of Central Michigan, where he was a four-year starter who threw 1,648 passes. He started 50 games and passed for 12,891 yards and 90 touchdowns. He sits ahead of NFLers Ben Roethlisberger, Chad Pennington and Byron Leftwich on the all-time Mid-American Conference passing list.

Will Rush be the next Tony Romo? Who knows, but his quarterbacking profile says he's worth a look, and his talent may be worth the wait.

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Cowboys' Front Office Eying Training Camp For Zack Martin Contract Talks - David Helman, Dallas Cowboys
The Cowboys will be looking to sign a big contract extension with All-Pro Zack Martin, training camp is the likely target date.

"At some point here we’ll direct our attention to Zack and see kind of how he’d like to proceed," Jones said. "But yeah we’ve been playing with these numbers, and when you’re dealing with top players like Zack, usually these things aren’t that difficult if everybody’s got some form of reasonability."

Projecting Cowboys Guard Zack Martin’s Contract Extension - Joseph.Hatz, Blogging The Boys
Extending Zack Martin’s deal is the top priority of the offseason for the Cowboys, let’s take a look at what it might take to get the job done.

I’m estimating that sometime over the next six months Martin will receive a five-year, $68 million extension with $35 million guaranteed. That is left tackle money in this day and age, but given the Zeitler contract and how much more Martin has accomplished than him, I think this is the range the Cowboys will have to be in to finalize a deal.

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Dak Prescott fixed his 'goofed up' feet and has bigger goals now - Todd Archer, ESPN
Wade Wilson recounts a Dak Prescott anecdote from last year that has the team confident Prescott will continue improve as he faces bigger goals.

"The snap, he’d never done that," the Dallas Cowboys quarterbacks coach said. "Never called a play. He had his feet all goofed up. Never been under center too much. Never. Rarely said the words in the huddle or really any verbal communication at all."

After the rookie minicamp ended and before the start of organized team activities, Prescott made a promise to Wilson.

"I’ll never forget this as long as I live," Wilson said. "He said, ‘Give me a week and you’ll never know that I played exclusively in the shotgun and never called a play.’ He said, ‘I’ll get it fixed.’"

And?

"One week later, he’s doing it," Wilson said. "No doubt."

Leading NFL in drafted Pro Bowlers isn't most amazing thing Cowboys have done over past 15 years - Bob Sturm, SportsDay
The Cowboys have drafted more Pro Bowlers than any other NFL team by a long shot over the last 15 years. As impressive as it is, there's something more impressive in that time frame.

I was amazed when I saw this -- having done this research myself -- but it is true, again. No team has drafted more first-team All-Pro players since 2002 than the Dallas Cowboys.

It should be pointed out that from 2002-16, there have been just eight teams in the NFL with more regular-season wins than the Cowboys: The Patriots, Colts, Steelers, Packers, Broncos, Eagles, Seahawks and Ravens. So, while many act like the Cowboys have been bad during this stretch "since the 'Triplets,'" we should at least point out that on a winning percentage basis, they are still a top-10 team during their "down time" at 131-109 over those 15 seasons. Pretty good, to be honest.

10 Burning Questions: #10 - Can The Cowboys’ Return Game Return? - VAfan, Blogging The Boys

In this series, we will count down (from 10 to 1) some burning preseason questions for the Dallas Cowboys.

In 2016, Whitehead improved on punt returns, posting a 7.8 yard average, but that left him 15th. On kickoffs, he didn’t return enough to qualify, but his numbers declined anyway to 23.2 yards per return. Since teams get to the 25-yard-line by not running the ball out, anything short of the high-20s on kickoffs is likely costing the team yardage.

Enter Ryan Switzer. Switzer scored seven touchdowns on punt returns in his college career, which ties him for second place all time, behind Wes Welker and Antonio Perkins, who finished with eight. Five of those came as a freshman, and by his senior year, opposing coaches weren’t daring to kick the ball where he could field it.

With 2018 NFL Draft bid in, Cowboys are now awaiting NFL decision - Clarence E. Hill, Fort Worth Star-Telegram
The Dallas Cowboys have submitted a bid to host the 2018 NFL Draft at both AT&T Stadium in Arlington and the Star in Frisco.

"They know how we can configure for X-amount of people,’’ Jones said. "Then they’ll come back to us with what they want. "We don’t know exactly what they’ll want to do. We’re waiting to hear on that.’’