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Mike McCarthy press conference: Updates on injuries, a new way of picking captains

The Cowboys head coach spoke on the Monday of game week.

NFL: Dallas Cowboys Training Camp Handout Photo-USA TODAY Sports

While it felt like it would never get here we have finally made it to the regular season. Congratulations one and all, it is football season.

We are in Week 1 and the Dallas Cowboys will be taking on the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday Night Football. It will be our first actual look at this team under Mike McCarthy, something we have been looking forward to for a long time now.

As it is the regular season we are now back to a regular rhythm and schedule from the head coach. He took to the podium on Monday and discussed where things are at six days out. Here is a recap of what he had to say. A reminder that all answer are paraphrases and not actual quotes.


Advantages to going into a season blind

This season has obviously gotten off to a much different start than any before it. Asked if the lack of information available to NFL teams is providing Mike McCarthy and Co. any sort of advantage, the head coach noted that there are a lot of un-scouted looks in the first four weeks of the season. He conceded there are probably more this year.

He said they were hopeful they could hide as much as possible.

Cowboys captains

Asked if the Cowboys have finalized who their captains will be, McCarthy had a unique answer. He noted that the team will have three captains and that they will change weekly. He said they will be voted on in the weekly meeting on Saturday and said that he wants to go about it this way so that the roster can potentially see different people experience captaincy.

He said that the only time they would vote and have captains with the “C”-type patch would be for the playoffs.

Reasons behind the release of Ha Ha Clinton-Dix

McCarthy noted that he obviously has a personal history with Ha Ha Clinton-Dix but that ultimately this was a football decision.

Thoughts on Darian Thompson

Coach said he is an instinctual player who is very smart, both on defense and on special teams.

Thoughts on Brandon Carr

Asked what he liked about Brandon Carr, McCarthy noted that Carr is an excellent veteran player with experience. He said he likes Carr’s flexibility to play multiple positions.

How realistic is it for Carr to play week one

Asked how realistic it is for Carr to play this week against the Rams, McCarthy said he couldn’t really say because they haven’t practiced yet.

Health status of Xavier Woods, Chidobe Awuzie

Coach said they will know more on Wednesday, but did say so far, so good.

La’el Collins has an injury

There has been speculation about La’el Collins not being in proper shape. McCarthy didn’t expand, but he said it was an injury issue and not a conditioning one. He noted Collins wants to be out there but it is not in his best interest medically.

“I don’t think this is normal for anybody”

Things are hardly what they normally are at season’s beginning. McCarthy said that he would hope that the Cowboys players would feel as close to normal when they are in the building but that we are in unique times to say the least.

Thoughts on Sean McKeon and Rico Dowdle

The Cowboys saw two UDFAs make their 53-man roster and McCarthy simply stated that they earned it. He was particularly complimentary of their ability to make the roster without any preseason games and noted that they are going to have to be ready for their roles.

This time last year for McCarthy

Asked what he was doing last year, coach noted that he didn’t watch a ton of football early on. Obviously “The McCarthy Project” is well-documented at this point but he said that it was a tough year and that he is grateful to be coaching again.

Thoughts on Randy Gregory

McCarthy said that he hasn’t had a chance to have a one-on-one with Randy yet but that having him back is obviously very exciting. He mentioned it is important to support Randy in every effort that they can. He complimented the defensive line group in working with Aldon Smith’s return and noted the veteran leadership in that room.