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Cowboys news: Updates as the Cowboys begin minicamp

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NFL: Dallas Cowboys-Minicamp Tim Heitman-USA TODAY Sports

Observations from Cowboys minicamp: Jason Witten looks like old self in 2-minute drill; QB Cooper Rush picked off 3 times - SportsDay Dallas Staff

There’s not a whole lot to be learned from mandatory minicamp practices, as these are still non-contact practices, but you can often gauge a player’s athletic development or decision making skills. And based on what people saw Tuesday, Jason Witten is looking good while Cooper Rush is not.

Connor McGovern, other injured Cowboys to miss minicamp - Patrik Walker, 247 Sports

The Cowboys began their mandatory minicamp on Tuesday and while everyone showed up, there were still some players who will not be participating due to injuries. Some of them have been known about, while others, including a rookie offensive lineman, came as somewhat of a surprise.

Third-year cornerback Chidobe Awuzie and fourth-year safety Kavon Frazier missed the second and third round of OTA practices, with the former nursing a hip flexor and the latter having had arthroscopic surgery on his knee. Frazier is expected to miss the next few weeks to rehab and rest for training camp in mid-July.

Awuzie has dealt with injuries in the recent past, but there’s also time for him to recover before there is any concern of the latest iteration negatively impacting the start of his 2019 season. The absence of Frazier over the next few weeks will open the door for others on the safety depth chart to land additional reps.

Additionally, rookie offensive lineman Connor McGovern will sit out with a pectoral strain that won’t require surgery.

Cowboys’ Hurns runs routes, says he’ll be ready - Todd Archer, ESPN

Allen Hurns is one of the players who will not be fully participating in minicamp after a gruesome ankle injury in the Cowboys’ playoff win last year. However, Hurns is making good progress, even running routes in individual drills.

Hurns, who said he is about “90 percent” after suffering a dislocated ankle and broken fibula, said he could practice now but would have issues with back-to-back workouts. He will not take part in individual drills during Wednesday’s minicamp work, but he will on the final day of the camp Thursday.

”I still get a little cringy thinking about it, but you know what’s surprising going through that? It wasn’t like the worst pain in my life,” Hurns said. “I was more freaked out about my ankle facing another way, but it was crazy for sure. Especially I had to stay off social media with everybody tagging me and things like that showing me the videos. I try not to watch it.”

“It’s a progression thing,” said Hurns, who caught 20 passes for 295 yards and two touchdowns in his first season in Dallas. “That’s the great thing about it. Each week you come in and you see that, ‘OK, I progressed to this,’ and you can look back and say, ‘I’m not where I was.’ That’s the great thing.”

NFL sought information from police about Ezekiel Elliott’s Vegas incident on same day video surfaced - Kate Hairopoulos, SportsDay Dallas

Most people seemed to think it was at least likely that the NFL would look into Ezekiel Elliott’s altercation in Las Vegas last month, even if Jerry Jones seems confident that nothing will come of it. But now there is confirmation that the NFL has already requested information on the incident, signaling quick action from the league.

The NFL is indeed reviewing the incident involving Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott and a security guard at a music festival last month in Las Vegas. A league security consultant requested full details of the altercation from the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police on the same day video of it surfaced via TMZ Sports.

The Dallas Morning News, through an open records request, obtained the letter Robert E. Hunt sent on NFL letterhead May 20, requesting all materials relevant to Elliott. The full letter can be seen below.

The ‘unknown’ that is Kellen Moore could give the Cowboys a unique advantage early in the season - SportsDay Dallas Staff

There’s been a lot of talk about new offensive coordinator Kellen Moore and what changes he might be bringing to this offense. While there have been some glimpses in practices and hints from various quotes, the reality is that Moore is still an unknown commodity. David Moore argues why that is a good thing for Dallas.

Look, this is still Jason Garrett’s offensive scheme. You’re not going to vary much beyond that because it’s their base. And you grow it from there. So, if there’s elements of this offense that drive you crazy as a fan... you’re still going to see them. But what they’re talking about here is... you get four different looks or whatever to get back to what you want to run. That’s what they’re doing here -- misdirection.

It’s a lot of what the Rams do. They’re still going to run off-tackle but maybe give a flare look or a slot receiver look... but it’s really just a hand-off. They just don’t want to give a clear picture to the defense of what’s exactly coming.

And I think, especially early in this, that there will be an advantage of the unknown that is Kellen Moore. They may know what he likes and what he wants to do, but defensive coordinators aren’t going to know his path to that destination. Or what looks he uses. Or what his tendencies are. Because he has no tendencies as a play-caller at this level.

Randall Cobb builds chemistry with Dak Prescott as WR settles in with Cowboys - Jori Epstein, USA Today

The Cowboys brought in Randall Cobb to replace, and arguably upgrade over, departed slot receiver Cole Beasley. Considering the great chemistry between Beasley and Dak Prescott, there were some big shoes for Cobb to fill, but it seems as if the new receiver has already filled them.

During team drills Tuesday, Cobb showed what that process looks like. Prescott followed up two completions to tight end Jason Witten by connecting with Cobb on an underneath pass. Cobb bobbled the ball but ultimately snagged it with one hand. Later in practice, Prescott spun out of pressure to find Cobb down the left sideline for a touchdown that resembled a shorter-distance version of his Week 17 game-winner to Beasley.

Though expected to operate primarily inside as Beasley did, Cobb might not be limited to the role in first-year coordinator Kellen Moore’s scheme.

“He’s smart enough to play every position,” Cowboys wide receivers coach Sanjay Lal said. “We can put him anywhere because he’s that guy.”

Jason Garrett speaks to the Super Bowl aspirations of the Cowboys - @jonmachota

The Cowboys are coming off three consecutive winning seasons and two playoff appearances, including winning a playoff game this past year. Yet Jason Garrett is seemingly on the hot seat, and he reiterated as much on Tuesday with his talk of the Super Bowl being the only goal for this team.

Jason Garrett Gets Flustered At Cowboys Minicamp Press Conference - JR De Groote, Heavy

At this point, most fans have come to expect a general standard when it comes to Jason Garrett press conferences. But things got a little weird during Tuesday’s minicamp press conference when a French-speaking reporter asked about French-Canadian long snapper LP Ladouceur.

“Could you just say his name one more time?,” Garrett quipped with the questioner. “I took about nine years of French and I just stop at L.P.”

When asked if Ladouceur had taught him any French words, Garrett tried to show off his skills with the word “fenetre” or window. The Cowboys’ skipper mispronounced it in a major way, drawing a huge laugh from the media on hand.

“That’s what I get, right,” Garrett told reporters. “I do it phonetically and they look at me like … story of my life. I’ll tell you about a great story about taking French 102 in college. It was the most eye-opening experience of my life. We’ll do it over a lemonade. I’m still scared from the experience.”