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Cowboys practice highlights: All hell breaks loose in camp; undrafted rookie shines; more

All the highlights from yesterday’s Cowboys practice in Oxnard.

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NFL: Dallas Cowboys-Training Camp Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

And a close-up view:

What to watch for:

  • Watch Tyron Smith (77) put on his helmet before entering the scrum - smart people should be leaving at this point.
  • Zack Martin (70) with the superman punch
  • Taco (97) knows what’s up: watch him sauntering over to where the action is going to be - and then joining in with a left hook
  • Maliek Collins (96) and Randy Gregory (94) with the cameo appearance (both wearing a hat)
  • Good footwork by La’el Collins (71) who stays on his feet the whole time.
  • Tyrone Crawford (98) swallowed up by a maelström of white.

Practice Recap: O-Line & D-Line Get Feisty - Staff,
Competition boiled over again on Saturday as a physical practice was punctuated by a scrap between Travis Frederick and Antwaun Woods.

The second scuffle of camp broke out during the Cowboys’ Saturday practice – once again during pass rush drills, to no one’s surprise.

Things went a bit further this time, as Travis Frederick and Antwaun Woods threw some punches at each other following a particularly contentious rep, which saw both players wind up on the ground.

“It’s just competitive people going at it and eventually something may break out,” Zack Martin said. “But we’ve had great competition so far. Our D-Line and O-Line are really pushing each other. It’s been a tough camp against those guys, but it’s what we need.”

Frederick agreed. Talking about the fight after practice, he said altercations are bound to be a byproduct of such a focused effort at maintaining intensity.

“I think that’s a good thing for our team, as long as everything stays within reason,” Frederick said. “You want to keep it right at that line of anger but composure, as well.”

Fight! All-Pro center Travis Frederick takes a punch from reserve DL before both units grapple at training camp - Brandon George, SportsDay
George with his take on the fight.

A fight broke out between the two units during one-on-one drills after reserve defensive lineman Antwaun Woods threw a punch at All-Pro center Travis Frederick. Woods drove back Frederick in one-on-one drills after Frederick struggled to keep his footing on the clumpy grass. Frederick had been driven back on back-to-back snaps on previous matchups against defensive tackle Brian Price.

Frederick was in Woods' face after he got back to his feet, and Woods responded with a punch. That ignited a fight between the offensive and defensive lines. At one point during the pushing and shoving, All-Pro right guard Zack Martin made an aggressive move over the top of the pile.

"Yeah, I got some air I think, didn't I? Martin joked. "I used a little leverage."

Martin's helmet came off at some point.

"I heard he was so explosive that when he jumped up his helmet popped right off," Frederick said. "I appreciate those guys coming in. As odd as it sounds, that's the epitome of team work there when the offensive guys jump in and back me and the defensive guys jump in and back their guy. All in all, nobody gets hurt and everybody is OK. It's sort of a team-building exercise, if you will."

Goal line observations from Saturday's practice - Kate Hairopoulos, SportsDay
The first- and second-team offenses each got four tries at the 2-yard line. Here's how that went for the first team:

In other practice observations, the defense got the best of the offense in the team's first goal-line work of camp. To be fair, the offense didn't have star running back Ezekiel Elliott, who was held out of the drill so that he wouldn't be put at risk of injury.

The first team got four cracks at goal-line snaps, and featured live tackling, which is rare in training camp.

On the first play, rookie running back Bo Scarbrough surged into the end zone for the offense. But the defense would win on the next three plays. Dak Prescott couldn't connect on a pass attempt. Then Scarbrough, the Alabama product, was stuffed on the next two plays, which the defense and Richard celebrated with glee.

Observations from Oxnard: Check out these goal line plays - Staff, SportsDay
Sportsday with the videos of all four goal line plays, and much more.

Cowboys practice report: Team is not worried about QB Dak Prescott, despite his uneven play so far in training camp – The Athletic
Dak Prescott​ made​ some​ good throws​ in​ practice​ Saturday​ but continues to​ have​ troubles​​ getting into the end zone in team drills, Watkins writes.

Prescott’s time in training camp is uneven. We’ve seen some strong and bad throws, which isn’t unusual for any quarterback in the early stages of training camp. One team official said the Cowboys are not worried about Prescott. “He’s had a good camp,” the team official told The Athletic. “He’s not going to force things downfield and get a freaking turnover. Just manage the offense.”

It’s fair to say Prescott should be better during his time in camp, but for now the Cowboys are pleased with what they’re seeing.

Defense gets best of offense in goal-line work - Todd Archer via Facebook
Some observations outside of the fight and goal line drills.

If there was a defensive player of the day it would have been undrafted CB Charvarius Ward. He intercepted Prescott on a deep ball to Gallup in one on one drills, catching back up to the play on the slightly underthrown ball. He broke up a deep ball from Rush to Lance Lenoir and then closed it out with by forcing Tavon Austin close to the sideline on a go route, leaving Rush without an avenue to throw the ball.

DE Tyrone Crawford was upset with getting beat by LT Tyron Smith in pass rush drills to start camp but he gained revenge Saturday, turning the Pro Bowler around much to the delight of his defensive teammates. Crawford was able to get up field and get back under Smith with some power.

The most impressive part of the aforementioned deep throw to Beasley in situational work from Prescott? Seeing LB Jaylon Smith stride for stride with the speedy receiver.

Star of the Day: Breakthrough Day For Rookie CB - Staff,
Charvarius Ward gets three of the five stars today, and Dorance Armstrong shows up again.

Rob Phillips: A week-plus into camp, this is an opportunity for young guys to show they’re deserving of snaps in the first preseason game. Charvarius Ward did that today. He was all over the field as a reserve corner and did an excellent job trailing Tavon Austin on a go-route that fell incomplete. Add an interception off Dak Prescott and another breakup, and this easily was the best day of camp from the rookie free agent out of Middle Tennessee State.

Nick Eatman: Yes, it’s hard to argue the Ward-train but another rookie was pretty good as well. Dorance Armstrong continues to shine and the coaches are definitely noticing. The fourth-round pick from Kansas got more reps with the first- and second-team units in the pass-rushing drills on Saturday. Armstrong might not be the most powerful rusher right, which is expected from a rookie, but you won’t find many on this team with a quicker first step.

Brawling Dallas Cowboys are ready to go against another team - Clarence Hill, Fort Worth Star-Telegram
The offense may not have looked unstoppable in their goal line work, but they got more than a participation medal in another sort-yardage situation:

It was a completely different story when the two sides squared off in the short-yardage situation in the middle of the field. Running back Zeke Elliott converted two third-down plays and a fourth-down play. Prescott also converted a third down on a short pass to tight end Geoff Swaim. The fourth down run by Elliott was a zone read that saw Prescott run with him the length of the field to the end zone in celebration.

Dallas Cowboys Saturday Practice Notebook: Fred fights, Tank tossed, Zeke zeroes in - Mike Fisher, 247 Sport
Fish reflects on Ezekiel Elliott's absence from the goal line drills and some post-practice scenes.

Ezekiel Elliott was held out of the full-contact goal-line stuff, and there's nothing unusual there. His value to the team is reflected in this move, which is reminiscent of what coach Jimmy Johnson used to do with Emmitt Smith. So Zeke got his groove on in other ways, including at the JUGS machine, where we was joined by the rest of the runners (including the just-re-signed Trey Williams) in showing off the pass-catching skills.

The day ended with a pair of scenes that softened what has been an intense session. First, as always, the children of veteran Cowboys continued their tradition of spotting defensive line leader Tyrone Crawford and running into his arms as if he is their long-long uncle. Tonight it was Tyron Smith's family that did so.

And second came Jaylon Smith trotting to the locker room teasingly zigging and zagging toward and then away from autograph-seeking fans. ... and then happily gave in, complete with a cartwheel toward the delighted audience.

Cowboys 2018 training camp practice recap: See fight between Travis Frederick, Antwaun Woods turn into melee - Michael Sisemore, Blogging The Boys
Sisemore's camp summary gives you all the pictures and videos you need from yesterday's practice.

Cowboys' Michael Gallup on the first purchase he made with his bonus money - Staff, SportsDay
Dallas Cowboys rookie wide receiver Michael Gallup recently joined KTCK 1310 AM/96.7FM and talked about the first purchase with his bonus money.

Q: What's the first thing you bought with your bonus money?

Gallup: "I needed a car. So, I went and got a car. I haven't had a car for, what, four years I would say. All throughout my college career. So, I went and got a car."

Q: What'd you get?

Gallup: "I got a Hellcat Challenger."

My man.

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