The Cowboys began their second padded practice today with a new but awfully familiar face at running back.
What’s it all about, Alfie?!
As reported last night, Alfred Morris made his return to the Cowboys but don’t look for #46, he’s got new digs:
ALFIE https://t.co/Gd7dtyvlzZ— David Helman (@HelmanDC) July 30, 2019
The Cowboys bringing in Morris makes sense because they don’t have to use a roster spot with Ezekiel Elliott on the ‘Did Not Report’ list currently. Morris is a great locker room presence that the coaches love having around and especially when there are several young, inexperienced runners on the roster. At best, Morris is an insurance policy, at worst, he’s not even on the final roster.
Randall Cobb makes his padded practice debut
Randall Cobb wearing pads with the Dallas Cowboys for the first time pic.twitter.com/rCEpxcJRNf— RJ Ochoa (@rjochoa) July 30, 2019
Randall Cobb has formed a quick bond with quarterback Dak Prescott and the two connected several times over the weekend before Cobb took a vet day on Monday. This Cowboys depth chart at receiver has come a long way since this time last year:
Amari Cooper, Michael Gallup, Randall Cobb, Tavon Austin pic.twitter.com/opCbmC8Xar— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) July 30, 2019
Rookie receivers making headway out there
It’s going to be incredibly difficult for the down roster receivers to snag a spot but there is some real competition going on between them that makes it hard to cut someone.
Jon’Vea Johnson has been held in high regard and he’s hit the ground running. The rookie has a real knack for tracking the football and arrives on schedule with Dak Prescott. For a guy with zero NFL experience, he did a fantastic job of selling this route and smoking Jourdan Lewis:
Dak to Jon’Vea Johnson pic.twitter.com/UJfft9B6uz— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) July 30, 2019
Seems like Reggie Davis, Jalen Guyton and Jon'Vea Johnson are all having really good starts to camp.— John Owning (@JohnOwning) July 30, 2019
Competition for last couple WR spots will be fun.
Dak to Amari is just too easy
Amari Cooper has been a present from the football gods to Dak Prescott. Dak has been following the advice of his QB Coach Jon Kitna to “Let It Rip”! The Dak Prescott of old was a little too cautious and hesitant to get rid of the football. One of the biggest reasons for that is because the Cowboys didn’t have the crisp route technicians that made him feel comfortable. With an excellent route runner like Amari Cooper, the Dak-to-Cooper connection has flourished:
Dak Prescott to Amari Cooper. And Travis Frederick in his first padded practice since August.#CowboysCamp pic.twitter.com/TagfCiPiXN— Jori Epstein (@JoriEpstein) July 30, 2019
By far, the biggest story has been the vast improvement of Dak Prescott’s quarterback mechanics. Having a stable of polished route salesmen with Cooper atop that list has been a huge contributor. Coach Kitna has worked to fix Dak’s footwork and it shows up in these practices. Dak has gained confidence in his ability to fire the ball, he knows more likely than not, a guy like Amari Cooper will reward him, such as this nasty plucking:
Dak Prescott to Amari Cooper pic.twitter.com/ZEoH8blP48— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) July 30, 2019
Jason Witten is the G.O.A.T. but Blake Jarwin is gaining momentum:
Blake Jarwin vs. Jeff Heath pic.twitter.com/mA8T8TxPsf— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) July 30, 2019
Everyone will remember Blake Jarwin’s huge three-touchdown performance against the Giants late in the 2018 season. What’s starting to gain steam is how much improvement Jarwin has shown this year. When the Cowboys brought back Jason Witten, it would have been natural for the tight ends on this roster to feel a little down but Jarwin has been visibly motivated to grab his coach’s attention. Jarwin has always shown the raw athleticism but that’s a crafty move he threw on Jeff Heath and Jarwin has had plenty of highlights in just a few practices.
Offense started off hot but the Cowboys defense finished the day on top
Back to back throws from Dak Prescott picked off. One not his fault. Ball was tipped. Second he didn’t see Xavier Woods, who broke quickly on the ball.— Todd Archer (@toddarcher) July 30, 2019
Don’t feel too bad for Heath, he got the last laugh today, picking off Prescott:
Jeff Heath interception pic.twitter.com/YoYd8T5XkM— Jon Machota (@jonmachota) July 30, 2019
Heath wasn’t the only safety to get involved in the “Pick Party”, Xavier Woods got one off Prescott and housed it.
Xavier Woods with a Pick 6 off Dak Prescott. pic.twitter.com/BCqHAP1zx0— Calvin Watkins (@calvinwatkins) July 30, 2019
D-Line tidbit: In compete period yesterday, it wasn’t even a competition as the offensive line made quick work of the defensive line. On Tuesday, that defensive line bounced back with several guys producing tenacious efforts that made Rod Marinelli much happier. Maliek Collins gave Zack Martin fits. Dorance Armstrong showed explosiveness that led to a few hands thrown between he and La’el Collins. Taco Charlton...yes...Taco got one over on Cameron Fleming.
All in all, the Cowboys offense has that firepower that would make it hard for any defense to keep up. After the offense had spent the better part of the day taking them to the cleaners, the defense came roaring back to take the win for Tuesday’s padded practice.
Following a Taco offsides penalty, Xavier Woods with a pick 6 in team.— Kevin Turner (@ktfuntweets) July 30, 2019
Taco at LDE, Woods/Collins at DT, Quinn at RDE. Normal day off for Tank.
Defense ahead of the offense for what I’ve seen today. Except for Cooper. Nobody can cover Cooper.
Practice No. 4 is over, which means we’ve reached the first off day of training camp.— David Helman (@HelmanDC) July 30, 2019
I counted 3 takeaways by the defense today, so I’m giving them the W.