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Jason Garrett talks about Kellen Moore and Jon Kitna as Cowboys coaches

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Jason Garrett spent a lot of time talking about his assistant coaches.

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

The Cowboys are ramping up their preparations in Oxnard for the 2019 season. As is customary, Jason Garrett will hold regular press conferences throughout the team’s time at training camp. Here is the recap of today’s press conference. (All answers are paraphrased and not actual quotes).


Q: Are you going to do yoga again this year?

We are going to do yoga again this year, the instructor is here and we start it tomorrow. We’re doing a special teams practice tomorrow in the morning, so yoga will happen with the other guys, then when the special teams guys finish they will join. We talk to players about their body being a temple, whatever it takes to keep it finely tuned we try. Lifting running, nutrition, flexibility is critical for longevity. We emphasize that. Guys have done stuff like this on their own in the past. When you get older you are less flexible, I did it with Troy Aikman at the end of our careers. Helps players improve flexibility. Really important because this game demands so much physically, the ability to handle injuries is enhanced.

Q: Trysten Hill cramping yesterday?

Not going to get into it in detail, sometimes young players need to eat right and hydrate right and get acclimated. We try to educate them.

Q: Is there a set order for the running backs or will you be rotating them around?

You have an initial plan on the first day but then you watch what goes on, want to see each of them in different environments. We’re not involved too much in the depth chart now. We just try to let guys compete, try to get equitable reps, create competition.

Q: A few different questions about Kellen Moore’s growth as a coach?

He grows everyday, he learns from experiences, he’s a smart guy, been around football his whole life. High football IQ, we’ve seen that every step of the way. He’s in new environments for him, like the day 1 meeting in camp, things like that. He is growing, it’s always a challenging room. No matter how many times you’ve done it you got to be ready. You learn the ropes, learn your voice, and get comfortable in the environment. One of the most enjoyable things I’ve done was when I first did it as a QB coach in Miami.

You have to prepare, you have to practice it when going in front of the room. When I was playing with Giants I took a speech class at NYU. Unbelievable experience, it was taught by an old acting teacher. Lots of different types of people there working on public speaking. You have to work on it. Kellen Moore and I have a good relationship, we talk a lot. We review that part of his job, we think about what maybe we could do the next time. Keith O’Quinn was fantastic in his meeting today. Part of my job is to give them feedback.

We talk specifically about how we’re going to do things, there are macro messages to get out there at the start of camp like what we aspire to be. Then you get specific, you talk about plays, techniques, film, it’s just a progression. I help them but don’t tell them what to do.

Q: Are you being more vocal on offense in practices?

I am more connected with the offense than I have been in previous years. We have young coaches, new coaches, on that side of the ball.

Q: Are you pushing the pace?

The energy of the leader pervades the group. Coaches are in leadership roles, elite players too, we are responsible for pace and energy.

Q: What do you need to see from the backup QBs?

They need to come to work everyday and get better. One thing young players at QB need to do is take more command of the situation. They are the leader of the huddle, the line of scrimmage, the pace, everything. The whole command. The best QBs have unbelievable presence. You got to know it, and know that you know it. Having command of the huddle like the greats is what we’re aspiring to.

Q: Best qualities of Jon Kitna?

We had a great experience with Kit when he played with us. I knew we had to get him back on board once he stopped playing. His command, ability to connect, to get the guys to play for him. He was a successful high school coach. Great knowledge and can connect, enthusiasm as a teacher. Works well with Kellen. He’s a pure person, wants to do the right things, help guys get better.