Wade Phillips and the rest of the Cowboys coaching staff will find out what kind of talent they have waiting in the wings when Dallas kicks their first preseason game off tonight against the Chargers. Unlike many Regular Joe fans, I enjoy watching preseason and the players who are given a chance to prove themselves. Here are a couple players to keep an eye out for in tonight’s game.
Even though he will play but a few series tonight, keep a watchful eye on #55 as he puts on the star for the first time. It will be interesting to see how Thomas plays in the 3-4 defense, which is known to use linebackers bigger than Thomas’ 5-11, 230 pound frame. If the front three can occupy San
Diego’s offensive linemen, it will free up Thomas to run around and make many plays.
For obvious reasons, many an eye will be fixed on the secondary to see what Adam Jones can do. Whether you love him or hate him, Adam Jones headlines the best secondary in the league and possibly the best in team history. Though we won’t see his punt returning abilities tonight, Jones should see much playing time, and one can only hope that Dallas’ new #21 can bring back memories of a #21 from the past.
Though his playing time may be limited, it will also be interesting to see what Felix Jones can do. Dallas drafted Jones in the first round to be a complement to Marion Barber and to be a “Jack-of-all-trades” kind of back. Watch for Dallas to line Jones up in multiple formations and take advantage of his ability to catch passes out of the backfield.
Personally, I will have my eye on the trenches, eagerly awaiting to see how well Tank Johnson has progressed. Dallas faced scrutiny and criticism from all directions when they signed Johnson during the season last year, but it looks as though the Cowboys will get the last laugh. According to many articles I’ve read, Johnson has greatly improved from last season and is pushing Jay Ratliff for playing time. Look for the coaching staff to take advantage of Ratliff’s versatility and bump him out to defensive end when Johnson is in at nose guard.