The Cowboys are running into a string of ACL tears.
The Dallas Cowboys have recently dealt with a flurry of signigicant knee injuries and now comes concern after Wednesday’s practice here inside The Star that another medical issue has arisen.
Free agent wide receiver David Durden - known in some quarters as “Prospect X’’ as he was the subject of an annual media project that focuses on little-known NFL Draft prospects - was carted off the field after susitaining an apparent leg injury.
Teammates surrounded Durden in support to console the undrafted rookie before he was moved inside to the locker room and given medical attention. … and now the Dallas News reports that an MRI shows the injury is season-ending.
A video posted of the play indicates that Durden simply tripped awkwardly while working in a one-on-one drill against star cornerback Trevon Diggs.
The Cowboys recently lost a pair of other rookies, DeMarvion Overshown and John Stephens Jr., to season-ending knee injuries.
Cowboys fans must accept hard truth about Deuce Vaughn’s role in backfield - The Landry Hat, J.B. Luke
The Deuce Vaughn hype train is real.
It’s hard not to cheer for a running back who is 5 feet, 5 inches playing in a league of giants. It’s the same reason many loved Maurice Jones-Drew (5-7) and Darren Sproles (5-6). And yet, Vaughn is smaller than both of those former Pro Bowlers.
But it’s gotten to a point where Vaughn is almost being overhyped by the media, particularly those on the Cowboys’ beat. And in the process they seem to overlook the stellar preseason another Dallas running back is having.
Rico Dowdle is the Cowboys’ RB2, not Deuce Vaughn.
Rico Dowdle has been the team’s most complete back in both preseason games. His lone mistake, a fumble near the goal line against Jacksonville, is a mistake that’s easy to correct. And he shouldn’t receive so much of the blame for it anyway.
Defenders are taught to attack the ball. If you watch the replay, Dowdle had that ball high and tight. The Jaguars did well to punch it out.
Inside the Cowboys’ Crowded Tight End Room, Where Camaraderie and Competition Reign - D Magazine, Tom Stephenson
The Cowboys tight end group is under the spotlight.
Jerry Jones once told me, “You know one thing that makes the NFL so popular is the great stories and drama it creates year-round.”
No stranger to the occasional tumult publicly or personally, the Dallas Cowboys owner might be surprised to learn where the drama played out this summer in Oxnard at training camp.
It was not supposed to be this way. Not these guys. Not in this room.
The three tight ends returning from the 2022 season—Sean McKeon, Jake Ferguson, and Peyton Hendershot—have been joined by Luke Schoonmaker, the Cowboys’ second-round draft pick from the University of Michigan. The three returning guys all could run, catch, and block. McKeon was considered the best blocker, Hendershot the best at running routes, and Ferguson solid in all aspects of the game and picked by Pro Football Focus as the team’s top breakout candidate. With the arrival of Schoonmaker came the group moniker the “Four Horsemen,” along with apparent confidence in the building that the free-agency loss of Dalton Schultz was not critical.
Dak is taking all the time to get ready for Week 1.
In last season’s opener, just about everything that could’ve gone wrong happened in a 19-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at home with the offense stalling for the entire game and Dak Prescott suffering a hand injury that kept him out for five weeks.
It’s safe to say that a lack of preparation offensively was a big reason for the bad start in 2022, but Prescott feels “much different” this time around going into what some would say is the best chance the Cowboys have had at a Super Bowl in recent years in 2023.
“Yeah, for sure,” Prescott said. “Understanding that I wasn’t playing in the preseason a week ago allowed me to move forward and watch some of their past games, our history with them. You’ve gotta prepare. It’s game one, you want to start off hot and start off the right way and when you’ve got the time, you gotta use it.”
The Cowboys defense should be elite.
Under defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, the Dallas Cowboys defense has trended in the right direction, surrendering fewer points and yards per game between 2021 and 2022. In both seasons, they have led the NFL in takeaways, which is why they make this list.
Though analysts tend to focus on points and total yards allowed in terms of stout defenses, a shutdown unit should be able to force turnovers at a high rate. Dallas has done that better than any other team over the past couple of seasons, and we should expect more of the same in 2023.
Last year, DaRon Bland, Trevon Diggs and Malik Hooker combined for 11 interceptions. Though we shouldn’t bank on a wildly unpredictable individual stat for team projections, Diggs and Hooker have established themselves as ball hawks with 17 and 11 career interceptions, respectively.
On top of that, Dallas acquired Stephon Gilmore, who’s a bit past his prime but has been one of the league’s premier cornerbacks. Last year with the Indianapolis Colts, he allowed a 74 passer rating, a 56.2 percent completion rate and two touchdowns in coverage. The 32-year-old can still blanket pass-catchers on his side of the field.
The Cowboys seem set with Brandon Aubrey, but a local name is in the news for positive reasons.
After coming off a successful season in the XFL in 2023 with the league runner-up DC Defenders, Matt McCrane hasn’t stopped increasing his strength and refining his technique.
This past weekend, Matt also attended and won a Virtual Free Agent Workout in San Diego with his coach, former NFL kicker Nick Novak and went a perfect 11 of 11 with a long of 60 yards against other NFL free agents such as Matt Ammendola and Austin MacGinnis.
Also earlier this week USAA and the Dallas Cowboys hosted 100 locally based military members at The Star in Frisco for the “USAA’s Salute to Service NFL Boot Camp” to kick off their new partnership. More from the event:
During this once-in-a-lifetime experience at Cowboys training camp, 50 local military competed in drills similar to those used by NFL coaches to evaluate NFL talent, including: the 40-yard dash, broad jump, three-cone shuttle, receiving gauntlet and the QB arm challenge.
After watching practice from a VIP viewing and hospitality area, invited military guests split into 10 teams to compete in NFL combine-style drills for some friendly competition against their fellow servicemembers.
The winning team was awarded tickets to the Cowboys Salute to Service game this season, while more prizes were raffled off at random that included signed Dak Prescott helmets, footballs, and official team jerseys.
This marks the first year that USAA and the Cowboys have hosted “USAA’s Salute to Service NFL Boot Camp,” as USAA holds the designation of Official Salute to Service Partner of the Dallas Cowboys.
Throughout the season, USAA and the Cowboys will host other events to foster an understanding and appreciation for the local military community, bringing our military closer to the game and team they love.
Our tour of @NFL #SaluteToService Boot Camps took us to the @DallasCowboys this week, where local active duty military attended practice and participated in the same combine drills used to evaluate pro talent. Learn more about how USAA and the NFL honor our military at… pic.twitter.com/mZpc6aLjVQ— USAA (@USAA) August 23, 2023
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