Well, practice number three of the Dallas Cowboys’ 2019 training camp has come and gone. Ezekiel Elliott continues to be absent and Travis Frederick was held out for precautionary measures...but Monday was the first time players put pads on and truly faced off against one another. Which means fans of shaky, handheld, sideline video with a hip-hop soundtrack are in for days of fun.
Let’s see who helped their case and who didn’t.
Standouts: Dak Prescott
Dak Prescott has a nice day, completing 13-of-17 passes, including this deep beauty to Tavon Austin in 7-on-7 drills:
Prescott also got undrafted, rookie free agent Reggie Davis involved in a deep crosser:
We’ve heard all off-season that Dak has looked more accurate in 2019, his first full practice didn’t disappoint.
Misdirection, subterfuge and offensive trickery
Teams who’ve had to face the Chiefs, Rams or Patriots in recent seasons are often at a defensive disadvantage due to pre-snap misdirection designed to confuse and delay. Cowboys fans are hoping Kellen Moore brings some of that as the team’s new offensive coordinator. Ladies and gentleman, I present to you:
A screen pass with some misdirection. pic.twitter.com/Q93Z2d1cPv— Calvin Watkins (@calvinwatkins) July 30, 2019
I’m not sure if that’s innovative whiz-bang chicanery... or the same screen play they’ve run successfully with Zeke a half dozen times over the last few seasons.
The offensive line
So, apparently the OL and DL went at each other in compete (1-on-1) drills and the offensive guys kinda dominated according to the beat guys. Tyron Smith beat Robert Quentin, Conner Williams beat Daniel Ross and Zack Martin beat Maliek Collins. As with every competition in camp, you’re never sure if this is a good sign for the offense or a bad sign for the defense.
Strugglers: Rico Gathers
When your the fourth man on a three-man depth chart and you’ve done virtually nothing in three years of professional football, you need to take advantage of every opportunity you get at training camp. You absolutely cannot have this happen:
After a day off Brett Maher missed another kick, making him 10-of-12 on the season. He’s far from a lock for a roster spot.
As noted, the defensive lineman struggled in one-on-one compete drills.
And Ezekiel Elliott missed another practice.
An early practice tomorrow then an off day Wednesday as this particular training camp starts to hit its stride.