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Cowboys news: Gil Brandt enters the Hall of Fame; Zack Martin & Amari Cooper injury updates

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NFL Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Gil Brandt gets his gold jacket, enshrined in Pro Football Hall of Fame - K.D. Drummond, Cowboys Wire

It was a special day for a special person.

After a lifetime of dedication and commitment, Gil Brandt has finally received the recognition he deserved. After spending almost three full decades working in tandem with Tex Schramm and Tom Landry to build the Dallas Cowboys to great heights, Brandt turned his innovative mind to helping to continue to build the shield that represents the NFL. Now, he will be commemorated for all of eternity as the newest member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

He is the 25th person associated with the Cowboys to have himself enshrined, and the 17th who spent the major parts of his career with the organization.

One Mighty Long Road To Canton - Mickey Spagnola, Dallas Cowboys

Gil Brandt was just 26 years old when one phone call changed his life forever.

This 60-year journey began in the fall of 1959 when Brandt received that memorable phone call from Schramm, a Dallas ownership group headed by Clint Murchison, with Schramm, the one-time GM of the Los Angeles Rams, and Landry, the New York Giants defensive coordinator, already on board, petitioning the NFL for an NFL franchise.

“It was really funny how Tex hired me,” says Brandt, who at the time was doing some low-level scouting for the Los Angeles Rams on the side of his “baby photography” business while Schramm was working for CBS, putting together the first live winter Olympic television broadcast being held at Squaw Valley, Calif., in 1960.

“He called me in October of 1959 and said, ‘Got a job for you.’ I said, ‘Tex, I don’t know anything about television.’ He said, ‘No, we’re going to have a franchise in Dallas and said I want you to be in charge of player personnel.’

“And he said, ‘Before you come, be sure to steal everything you can from the Rams’ scouting files.”

Gil Brandt’s Pro Football Hall of Fame induction speech had everything, including a playful jab at Cowboys owner Jerry Jones - Ryan Isley, SportsDay

Just a couple of gold jacket-wearers taking playful jabs at each other.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones presented Brandt for enshrinement on Saturday and made light of the time he fired the new Hall of Famer shortly after buying the team in 1989.

“When Gil asked me to make the induction, I thought, ‘how many people get a chance to be a part of an honor of somebody that you fired 30 years ago,’” Jones said in his video when presenting Brandt. “How could it come this full circle?”

Not to be outdone, Brandt also made mention of the breakup.

“Jerry, thank you for today’s wonderful presentation, thank you for inducting me into the prestigious Cowboys Ring of Honor last season,” Brandt said. “And thank you for making me a free agent 30 years ago.” That ‘free agent’ now has a bust in Canton.


Let’s get an update on the health of the players....

Cowboys guard Zack Martin has some irritation to disc in his back, could be out at least a week - Calvin Watkins, SportsDay

Watkins provides an update on the status of Cowboys All-Pro guard.

Cowboys starting guard Zack Martin could be out at least a week with irritation to a disc in his back. Martin missed Friday’s practice to undergo an MRI exam after experiencing some discomfort.

”I think the plan right now is to rest him and rehab him here for a few days and maybe even up to a week or so and just see how he responds to that,” Jason Garrett said. “Obviously he’s as tough as they come and he’ll do everything possible. But its probably in his best interest right now to dial him back off the practice field and see how it responds to that.”

Camp Updates: Cooper Leaves Practice Early - Staff, Dallas Cowboys

The Mothership provides a full list of updates, including an early exit for the Cowboys star receiver.

Not long after the start of Saturday’s practice, Amari Cooper went back into the locker room with an apparent heel injury.

There doesn’t seem to be major concern from the Cowboys’ medical staff, but it’ll likely be enough to keep him out for the rest of practice and perhaps even Sunday’s Blue-White scrimmage.

With Cooper out of practice, the first-team offense will likely see more of Michael Gallup and possibly Tavon Austin, Reggie Davis and rookie Jon’Vea Johnson. (Randall Cobb is getting a veteran rest day.) The Cowboys have used a healthy rotation of receivers on the second-team unit.

Practice Recap: Olumba & The Defense Win Again - Staff, Dallas Cowboys

Rob Phillips and David Helman provide us with a practice recap, including an impressive day for one of the bubble guys trying to make the roster.

While the Cowboys might be down in numbers with their depth at corner, one of the guys fighting for a spot took a huge step in the right direction Saturday. Donovan Olumba was all over the field, making plays, breaking up passes and even getting an interception in team period.

“Yeah, it was pretty good,” Olumba said of his practice. “Every single day I’ve got to keep bringing it. But (this day) helps my confidence.”

Olumba has been battling with rookie Mike Jackson for second-team reps. The Cowboys are playing without injured starter Byron Jones and backup C.J. Goodwin, which allows players such as Olumba to get more snaps during camp.

“Whenever I get in there, I just try to do my best for the team,” said Olumba, who spent all of last year on the Cowboys’ practice squad. “Whatever role they want me to play, I’m willing to do.”

Observations from Oxnard: Cowboys WR Amari Cooper leaves practice (heel), Dak Prescott-Michael Gallup connection heats up - Staff, SportsDay

The Dallas Morning News staff provides several observations from camp via twitter, including a nice little battle between two players who are having a nice camp so far.

In case you missed it...

Cowboys Practice #7: Amari Cooper leaves early with a heel bruise - Michael Sisemore, Blogging The Boys

We got you covered each day with run down of practice.

Xavier Woods picked up an interception a few days ago and added another one in today’s practice. Woods has ball skills that were a big reason for him being drafted three seasons ago, here he is playing center-field, he makes an excellent read on a deep pass from Dak Prescott:


Mark Wahlberg showed up to watch Jason Garrett and his funky bunch on Saturday. It’s as if all the pieces are falling into place for a special season for the Cowboys. It’s Happening.