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Cowboys news: Updates on Taco, Rico, Tapper, and Jaylon

Plus all the other headlines you need.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys-OTA Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett explains decision to sit TE Rico Gathers for all of last season - Kate Hairopoulos, SportsDay
There was a bit of buzz about Jason Garrett's comment that five practices a day wouldn't be enough for Rico Gathers. But you might want to take that in context.

"He's done a really good job improving over the course of his time here, he's a different player now than he was a couple years ago," Garrett said. "He just needs to play more football. We could practice five times a day and that wouldn't be enough for him and a lot of our younger players, just because they need so much work. You have to take advantage of every rep you get, you have be prepared, when you go out on the field it's a productive rep for you and you learn from it, stay locked in each day and grow in every part of the game. I think he's done a really good job of that."

Jaylon Smith sheds fat, added muscle and is faster without brace - Patrik Walker, 247 Sports
The Jaylon Smith hype machine is in full swing. And to be honest, it is hard to not join in when he is sharing things like this.

Speaking from Week 2 of Cowboys' OTAs, he's now revealed to the media he put on eight pounds of pure muscle and reduced his body fat [to] 3.5%. Still not impressed? Let's toss in the fact he adds his 20-yard shuttle time has dropped from 4.03 seconds (with brace) to 3.98 seconds (without). That effectively makes him faster than he was before both Notre Dame and high school.

Scout’s Notebook: Connor Williams Settling In, Cole Beasley’s New Role; More - Bryan Broaddus, Dallas Cowboys
Broaddus always sees so much in practices, including this.

Need an example of Jaylon Smith moving well? Coaches tried to set up a situation to get Ezekiel Elliott one-on-one in the flat against Smith. The plan was to try and pick Smith with Blake Jarwin by running him inside. To Smith’s credit, he was able to avoid the contact and quickly face up Elliott, giving Dak Prescott nowhere to go with the ball.

Day off for Tyron gives Fleming first-team reps as Chaz Green stays in - K.D. Drummond, Cowboys Wire
It was noticed last week that Chaz Green got first team reps during Zack Martin's holdout while he and the team continue to negotiate his extension. Now another All Pro being held out has opened more reps for a different player.

Not only was Zack Martin absent as he protects himself while his agent and the team work on a long-term deal. Wednesday was a planned veteran’s day off for left tackle Tyron Smith. Cameron Fleming, a free-agent signing from New England took his place with the first team.

Taco Charlton sees himself making bigger impact in Year 2; 'It's starting to all come together' - Jon Machota, SportsDay
People are still grumbling about how Taco Charlton did not contribute the way they expected of a first round pick. But a pretty good player just came to his defense.

Pro Bowl defensive end DeMarcus Lawrence recently took some of the blame.

"I feel like Taco had a pretty good rookie season," Lawrence said. "You all take away the light that he was playing behind me so it wasn't like he could get as many reps as he needed. This year I feel like he's going to come along and take you all by storm."

Cowboys Bring Back RB Darius Jackson; More Moves As OTAs Continue - Rob Phillips, Dallas Cowboys
Roster building goes on 365 days a year. And the Darius hype is active once again.

Wednesday, the club released guard Jay Robertson and defensive tackle DeQuinton Osborne and signed three players: wide receiver Mekale McKay, defensive tackle Antwaun Woods and running back Darius Jackson, its 2016 sixth-round pick.

Why being a 'long dropper' can sometimes put Dak Prescott in the wrong position and how he's trying to fix that - Brandon George, SportsDay
This is a great example of just how detailed coaching in the NFL can be as Scott Linehan discusses the way Dak Prescott drops back to pass.

"We're just being more aware based on the play we're running of being tied into together of where the O-line expects him to be," Linehan said. "He's a long dropper. He's got a long stride. So, he's really working at getting back there. So sometimes it's perfect, but sometimes it may be a little deep. Maybe sometimes we're over-emphasizing it, maybe he's not deep enough, so it's things like that that you look at and work on and you kind of break yourself down and I think he's really done a great job of doing that as well as focusing on his overall game."

Charles Tapper faces doubtful future in wake of latest injury - Patrik Walker, 247 Sports
You have to say this kind of sucks for the player.

Charles Tapper is sidelined by injury yet again.

Speaking from Week 2 of Dallas Cowboys' OTAs, head coach Jason Garrett revealed the oft-injured defensive end has is faced with yet another setback, this time suffering a concussion at practice. It's an injury made that much more curious by the fact there is no contact allowed in OTAs, per the Collective Bargaining Agreement. There is no timeline yet for his return to the field, adding to an already dark cloud hanging over his roster spot on the team. So much potential exists within the former fourth-round pick that it does warrant the Cowboys giving him some leeway, particularly considering the initial circumstances that were completely out of his control.

Cowboys Need Ezekiel Elliott Involved In The Passing Game - Ben Grimaldi, Pro Football Talk Line
There is a lot of focus on how the revamped wide receiver corps will affect the Cowboys' passing game, but there is another element that may also have a big impact.

Right now, we know the Cowboys have foreshadowed changes in the scheme, but we don’t know what that will look like yet. What we do know is that Ezekiel Elliott will be the workhorse lining up behind the offensive line and Dak Prescott. Zeke is one of the best running backs in the NFL and the offense should flow through him. As a pure runner, Elliott might be the best in the game.

However, if the offense is going to run at an optimal level in 2018, Zeke needs to be a bigger part of the passing game. The Cowboys lost a ton of targets last year, gone are the 220 passes thrown Dez Bryant and Jason Witten’s way. New wide receivers Allen Hurns and Michael Gallup will eat into that target share, as will the newly acquired Tavon Austin and the tight ends, but Zeke needs more looks as a receiver.

Will Cowboys pay the price to host another Super Bowl? - Todd Archer, ESPN
One reason the Super Bowl has not returned to Dallas may be the new requirement that the host each year has to play a home game overseas or in Mexico.

But will they give up a home game to get one?

“It wasn’t a rule (when AT&T Stadium hosted Super Bowl XLV on Feb. 6, 2011), but it’s a new rule,” Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones said. “It’s certainly something we’re aware of and something we’ll have to take into account as we continue to try to get a chance to bid on one of these games.”

The Cowboys played in London in 2014, but that was a Jacksonville Jaguars’ home game. They have talked about playing a game in Mexico but have not yet been selected.

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