Cowboys: Moving & Shaking!

This has been an exciting week for fans and players! For us fans, we are finally seeing a light at the end of the tunnel. Pre-Season is almost here! If you’re like me, it can’t come soon enough! News about players is coming in at lightning speed. It’s enough to make our heads spin!

 The players had an earth moving experience yesterday. As soon as I got word, I scrambled for a television or radio to get the latest updates. Of course, at the office, my access to the outside world is limited. I got scattered information until I got home from work. My first stop was the television – the news was on! I had to know my favorite players were okay!

As it turns out, it was a mild quake about a hundred miles from their location. That doesn’t change the fact that an earthquake can be a spooky experience, especially if you have never felt the earth move before! By their reactions, I could tell that it was a first for many. It can be an unnerving experience to say the least! I mean, the ground should not move, right? Thankfully, the team was fine. I was pleased to see them cracking jokes and remaining focused.

On the fan-front, the Cowboys have opened their online membership to the True Blue Fan Club to everyone. They are encouraging fans to share their photos and favorite memories of Texas Stadium. It is a really cool site with tons of things to see and do! I would like to encourage you to check it out. If you are moved to share your pictures or thoughts in a blog, it is free! Share your username with me so I can support what you post! My username is: TxShelbyTx – you can find me by searching Fan Profiles. Be sure to read my blog! You’re sure to get a kick out of it! Admin changed the title of my blog and I was so pleased with what they did!  Here’s the link: True Blue Fan Club

Based on what I’m seeing, I get the feeling that the Cowboys are setting the stage for something fantastic to celebrate the end of an era. This could be a rare opportunity for fans around the world to be involved! Don’t miss your chance, okay!?

I tend to get long winded as the season gets closer and I don’t want to wear you out before we even get started. I’m going to close out here with a big THANK YOU to Chuck. Chuck made my day after I announced that my blog at the True Blue Fan Club had been featured. He called me, “America’s Fan for America’s Team.” I would like for Chuck to know that those kind words rank high in my favorite moments as a fan! It sits high on the chart with 2007 Dr. Pepper Ultimate Fan and the minutes I spent on the field during a game in 2006! Moments I will never forget and cherish forever!

Ya’ll have a great week! I will see you next Wednesday!
GO COWBOYS!!
Shelby


Injury Update: Terence Newman Out For At Least Three Weeks

The Cowboys announced that Terence Newman will miss at least three weeks due to a slight groin strain.

Initially the thoughts were he would miss 2-3 practices after Newman was injured Monday during a play. Newman got an MRI Tuesday and it revealed he had a strain.

It’s like deja vu all over again. Newman missed three preseason games last season and the first two regular season games.

The Cowboys top corner will miss the preseason opener against San Diego and possibly the second game in Denver.

Adam Jones and Mike Jenkins will fill Newman’s shoes while he recovers.

What Intrigues You Most About Wade Phillips?

USA Today published an article naming the Five intriguing coaches to watch for the upcoming NFL season. Our very own Wade Phillips made the list, just barely, at number five.

5. Wade Phillips, Dallas: It is tough to say that Phillips needs to win the Super Bowl or pack his bags but that may be true. This team was built by Bill Parcells and fans are expecting a lot. Phillips finished 13-3 last year. Now everyone wants a ring.

Of course, I don’t agree with the list. I understand Tony Sparano, former member of the Cowboys coaching staff, making the list but why Jim Zorn? Jim Zorn inherited the Washington Redskins from Joe Gibbs when Gibbs retired after last season. Why is he of interest to anyone?

But then again, intriguing doesn’t always mean great. Actually, it means curiously interesting, which could be in a negative or positive way.

Either way, I have confidence in Wade to get our team to the championship. I really like his style of coaching and I honestly believe the players are behind him 100%. Of course there will be a change of heart if the Cowboys don’t go all the way… but I don’t think we have to worry about that Cowboys fans!

Talk Back Tuesdays

 5.8 Earthquake Felt At Oxnard!

I just heard on 103.3 ESPN radio that there was a pretty huge earthquake felt at the Cowboys Training Camp. Reports are saying there were no injuries reported thus far, but some are shaking up from the ordeal.

I myself believe this Quake is due to the massive amount of weight from the offensive and defensive line.  🙂

Cowboys are letting the L.A. area know they are there! 

 

Your Time To Chime

I’m gonna switch gears this week. I’m sure everyone has been keeping up to date with all the things going on in Training Camp – the injuries, whose getting the best of who, and how the newbies are doing.

I have lingering issues on a few key topics that have been put on the back burner due to the excitement of TC.  I would like for you, the masses, to chime in on these issues and give your opinion with mine.

My first issue is this ongoing speculation that Jason Garrett will be replacing Phillips after this season regardless of a Super Bowl win.

Some are reporting that Phillips is the head coach for the primary fact of getting Garrett ready to launch. 

Others report that if he wins a playoff game then he will stay.

I can understand that reporters will throw anything out there to have a story to write about, but MAN!  This has got to weigh heavy on Phillip’s mind.

I can see these things coming up like over halfway through the season if there losing, but at least give the man a chance to redeem himself.

These things should not even be brought up this early into Training Camp.

Some people look at the coaching staff and assume that the moves that were made were made around Garrett. Wade didn’t bring them in. So therefore Wade is gone after this year.  It’s got me puzzled.

I feel that the players have a good chemistry with Phillips. I haven’t seen nor heard of any ill will toward him at all!

Maybe this is the way to win a Super Bowl. Hold the coaches job over his head and he will produce. Hey It worked for the Giants!

Let me know your thoughts and opinions on this issue. Could it Happen? Could it Not? 

GO COWBOYS!!!

Seeing Stars Can Make You See Straight

I was having a horrible day at work, just one of those days. I’m sure everyone can relate. On my lunch break I decided to stop into the music/book store and possibly find something to lift my spirits, or at least distract me.

Surprisingly, I couldn’t find any new music that I couldn’t live without. I wandered through the store as if I was lost, not knowing what I was there for. I made my way through the video games, movies, books and ended up back in the front of the store to the corner where all of the magazines are kept.

StarStruck Graphics

Suddenly my eyes opened wide and I smiled. There he was, Tony Romo on the cover of, not one, not two but three magazines in the front row. Fantasy Football magazines nonetheless. Our celebrity quarterback is becoming a regular in the media spotlight and a household name as well. I’m so proud!

Thanks Tony for saving my day. I’m sure my co-workers are happy that I came back to work with a different perspective and a smile on my face. Oh, and yes I purchased two of those magazines, I’ll be sure to get back with ya’ll on the interesting details.

 

Newman Will Be Fine, If Not We Have Backup This Time

Many people worry when they hear the name Terence Newman and injury in the same sentence. Can’t say that I blame them, he missed the first three games last year because of problems with his foot. However, Newman came back and had an excellent season, earning his first trip to the Pro Bowl and later getting a nice extension for six-year, $50.2 million.

T-New was injured yesterday during morning practice when, according to Coach Phillips, he “got tangled up with a receiver during a play and twisted his leg awkwardly”. The team doesn’t seem to be worried and the media isn’t freaking out, so I think it’s safe to say he is okay. He didn’t participate in the afternoon practice but he was there for observation.

The team will most likely have Newman sit out Tuesday’s practice and likely get the groin injury further examined just to play it safe.

While he’s out, some of the younger cornerbacks will see more field time. Rookie Mike Jenkins took Newman’s place on the first team. Jenkins has looked very good in camp so far.

The Cowboys ability to acquire several CBs this year certainly helps when you have an injury to one of your starters. When both starters went down last season, it was a nightmare. Even though you hate to lose a starter under any circumstances, this time we’re ready.

All Roads Lead To Tampa, Florida

Not to anyone’s surprise, but Terrell Owens has been the most impressive Cowboy at camp thus far. Owens continued to sweep past the defense catching deep passes, often lined up against Adam Jones. The two have definitely formed a friendly competition and so far Owens is ahead.

 “Every day is going to be different, depending on the feel of each individual. Some days he will feel a little better than me and the majority of the days I will feel a little better than him.” -Terrell Owens on Adam Jones

“I think I’m the best. He thinks he’s the best, so that will make us better. I know on Sunday my job will be a whole lot easier,” Jones said. “It helps me a lot. T.O. is a world-class athlete. … I’m enjoying myself and I’m getting better every day.” -Adam Jones on Terrell Owens

Both Owens and Jones are very confident, and competing with one another will only help the team. When you’ve got the best of the best that are always striving to outdo one another. The outcome can only lead to another great season and hopefully a Super Bowl title when it’s all over.

Will Patrick Crayton and Sam Hurd Answer The call?

With the news of Terry Glenn being released… a move that I applauded, it now falls on our young receivers to step up and fill the void left by his absence. Most notably, Sam Hurd and Patrick Crayton.

Let’s first look at a short synopsis on each player.

Patrick Crayton – After spending his first three seasons as the club’s primary punt returner and as a reserve wide receiver, Crayton had the opportunity to showcase his talents on a full time basis in 2007, because of injuries to Terry Glenn who missed the first 15 games of the season. Crayton filled in admirably as the team’s second receiver position but was unspectacular. He finished with career highs with 50 receptions, 697 receiving yards and seven touchdowns. Two of those touchdowns and 187 of those yards, came in one game against the St. Louis Rams.

Sam Hurd – Hurd was the third receiver for most of the season and finished the year with 19 catches for 314 yards, both career-highs, and his first career touchdown reception. He had three catches and season best 64 yards in the last game of the season against the Redskins.

When you take away Hurd’s and Crayton’s best games of the season, you are left with numbers that are dreadfully underwhelming at best. This season will be their wakeup call. It will be the signature moment that will define the rest of their careers.

Should niether of them answer the call, the Cowboys still have other viable options in Miles Austin and Isaiah Stanback. For now, they are slotted to spend most of their time on special teams, but may be pressed into starting duty if Hurd and Crayton fail to deliver in the early goings.

The Cowboys will give Hurd and Crayton plenty of leeway during the first few games of the season. But if the team falters because of the excess double and triple coverage on Terrell Owens, they won’t hesitate to make a change to the depth chart.

I have high hopes for Hurd, and I believe he may surpass Crayton as the number two receiver before long. I also see a bright future for Stanback as well. It will be interesting to see how it all plays out, and even more interesting to see if Jerry Jones brings someone new into the picture which is always a possibility.

A Stampede of Wide Receivers

Training camp is here! Pre-season kicks off on August 9th…  
 
I was just sitting around thinking about the new season. We have so many exciting rookies in camp. I think the wide receiver corps is going to be the most fun to watch. As I looked over the roster I saw that we have four rookie wide receivers competing for a job this pre season. Then of course, we have Terrell Owens, Terry Glenn (I think?), Patrick Crayton, Sam Hurd, a healthy Isaiah Stanback, and finally Miles Austin, who by the way, showed off some amazing skills in mini camp.

The new kids on the block are rookie Danny Amendola, Mark Bradford, Mike Jefferson, and Daniel Polk. So it will be very interesting to see if any of them will be able to play on the opposite side of Terrell Owens, maybe even rise to his level of play? Okay, maybe “almost” to his level!

On a side note… Adam Jones will be interesting to watch just because we have heard so much about the guy. I have seen him play with Tennessee and he was great but, now I have to see him play like that with a star on his helmet before deciding if he’s a keeper.

Who do you most want to see play in training camp? What do you think about the rookie wide receivers in camp? Come on guys, speak up and comment!
 

The Waiting Is Over…

“I’ve paid my dues.. Time after time.
I’ve done my sentence… But committed no crime.
And bad mistakes… I’ve made a few.
I’ve had my share of sand kicked in my face, but I’ve come through.”

“But it’s been no bed of roses… No pleasure cruise.
I consider it a challenge before the whole human race,
And I ain’t gonna lose.”

What a way to open up a new season… I prefaced this post with some well know lyrics from what has become a cult favorite among stadium songs. I couldn’t post the refrain of that song… not yet. That will come on February 1st, 2009 from Tampa, Florida, the site of this season’s Super Bowl. That will be the day we post the full lyrics to “We Are The Champions”.

I wanted to open this article by stirring your inner emotions. Emotions that have been asleep for far too long this off season. It’s time to revive ourselves and dive into a new season of Dallas Cowboys football. A season that will be long on hope and promise… a season that will trump the bad taste of the last two season finishes… a season that will be etched in silver on the Vince Lombardi Trophy in 2009.

We can spend the next 100 words talking about the holes in the lineup and the problems this team faces as they open training camp today. We can talk about all the controversies and the all the dramas too. But I am not going to ruin this moment by going into all of that right now… there will be time for that later on. Lets just share in the excitement and joy and optimism of a new season and a new opportunity to embark on a hard-fought journey and a memorable season sprinkled with thrills and elation.

Training camp opens today. Shout it from the rooftops and spread the news. Football is back!
 

Freedom isn’t “Free”

As the new dawn of a new season approaches, the 2008 Boys are thankfully faced with very few question marks. There is the ongoing Terry Glenn fiasco, which I don’t really understand, because if TG really wants to be on this team, then what is 700 grand to a multimillionare (the difference between his salary and his injury settlement)? And that is ONLY if he does get hurt. TD to Terry: sign the dang paper! The receiving corps is the standard question mark thrown about in the media, and understandably so, but I have enjoyed watching the development of Patrick Crayton and Sam Hurd, and I think they are going to be consistent enough to offset any double coverage on TO. I also remind everyone not to forget that Jason Witten is the true number 2 receiver (number one if you go by receptions).

That being said, the other big question mark is the secondary. It has a little bit of a new twist this year in that we actually have a surplus of DB’s for the 4 to 5 spots back there. The candidates are highly paid and highly controversial. A rundown and a personal, unprofessional scouting report:

 

The Godfather: Roy Williams – 7th year – Oklahoma. The often criticized Roy has gone from the most popular Cowboy to the most maligned. Whether it is due to weight gain, lost confidence or even putting his faith and religion over football (as some have suggested), Roy has lost a big step and is very vulnerable to tattoed tight ends and deep bombs over the middle.

The Natural: Terence Newman – 6th year – Kansas State. T-New became another member of the secondary to cash in on a huge contract and bonus. The interception totals won’t make your heart flutter (16 for his career) but he is a true shutdown corner with speed. A team leader and well respected across the league. Will start every game as long as he is healthy for the next 5 to 7 years.

The Beast: Anthony Henry – 8th year – South Florida. Henry is a big, physical corner who is solid in the run game and the pass game. Injury prone in his first 2 years here, but when he is on the field, he has shown to be a playmaker with a knack for the football. He was given a huge deal in free agency and has shown to be worth the investment to this point. He needs to stay healthy and not get frustrated by any possible positional changes to continue to live up to the deal.

Mr. Consistent: Ken Hamlin – 6th year – Arkansas. Hamlin was left on the trash heap for any team to have prior to last season. The Cowboys signed him to a one year deal and he turned that into a Pro Bowl season and a brand spankin new 6 year, 39 million dollar deal. He will anchor the secondary and play more of a hybrid free safety/strong safety role in the Phillips 3-4 this year. 

The Wild Card: Adam “Pac-Man” Jones – 3rd year – West Virginia. Oh, everyone knows the story, but as the 6th overall pick in the 2005 draft, no one questions the talent. If he can stay focused on football and stay away from the strip clubs and Hennessey, the Cowboys will have arguably the best group of cornerbacks in the entire NFL. Stay tuned.

The Rook: Mike Jenkins – 1st year – South Florida. Jenkins will be paid as a late first round pick that he was so the staff will likely look to get him on the field. He was a big part of a great season for the South Florida Bulls who rose as high as Number 2 in the nation last year. Projected as a higher pick than he was and Cowboys traded up to get him. Great speed and agility. Bright future in the league, but still a rookie and will most likely not be left on an island against any seasoned NFL receivers.

 

So now that we know the pieces to the puzzle, we should look at the puzzle itself. There has been great conjecture from the media and the fans alike that Roy will be cut in a salary cap move. I am not going to sit here and say that it absolutely will not happen, I just see it as very unlikely. Primarily due to depth and injury concerns. Ask yourself one simple question, would you rather have too many or not enough?  The base defense will most likely have Hamlin (FS), Williams (SS), and Henry and Newman. Simple enough, no breaking news there. The questions begin when you factor in how well Pacma…oops, Adam Jones performs in camp and if/when he is reinstated, and of course injuries as well as matchups. I would suggest, in my humble opinon, we get Henry some reps at free safety during camp and when we play a team like Cleveland with a prolific passing attack for example, have Henry back at free safety and bring in Adam Jones and Mike Jenkins in at corner and nickel back, respectively. When we play a team like Philadelphia or San Francisco, teams with a west coast offense and not much of a deep passing game, keep Roy in there with his physical presence and intimidation factor, and put Jones in at the nickel in passing situations. That is as long as Jones doesn’t beat out Henry for the starting cornerback job…..whew. I am tired after all that. The bottom line is Jerry Jones has paid all of the DB’s alot of money and they will be a huge part of our ultimate success. To whom much is given, much is expected.  

All I know is that I personally would rather have too much than not enough!

It should be a great season…..camp kicks off tomorrow and then the first practice is on Friday.

Cowboys Fan For Life – TD

Player News: 4 Years for Choice and Walden

The Cowboys locked up two more players today. Tashard Choice and Erik Walden both signed 4-year contracts. The exact terms are yet to be released.

Running back Tashard Choice was drafted in the 4th round this year. He had turned some heads during minicamps. Expect to see alot of him in Training Camp and Preseason games. Some believe he will pass Felix Jones and become the backup RB. Only time will tell.

Linebacker Erik Walden, 6th round draft pick, was a surprise from the get-go. The Cowboys are stacked with linebackers so its obvious he was taken to be developed for the future. At the same time, he may not even make the team.

Interestingly enough, Dallas has not agreed to terms with their first three draft picks, Felix Jones, Mike Jenkins and Martellus Bennett.