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New to the Silver and Blue: Brandon Carr

When the Cowboys picked up free agent, corner-back, Brandon Carr, I knew nothing about him.  When they signed him to a 5 year, $50.1 million contract, I was shocked to say the least. After letting Newman go, we knew he would fill his spot on the roster. I was wondering if he would be able to. So far his preseason I’ve been extremely impressed with his talent. He seems to be fitting right in to the defense.

I also liked his comments on the Dallas Cowboy organization soon after signing. “From the moment they came and got me, to the moment I got to the stadium, it was just red-carpet treatment,” Carr said. “They showed me they wanted me. They were genuine with their words. That played a part in the process and my decision-making. The stadium is phenomenal-the best in the world. I’m excited to get in the uniform, get in the stadium and get to work.” Carr also said  he was ecstatic after signing his contract. “It’s been a long, long time, and I’ve been waiting for the opportunity.” Carr said, “To not only secure myself financially, but also to elevate my game to be at the highest level, which is the Dallas Cowboys. Now it’s time to turn my game up another notch.”  I think the work effort he put in at camp and his efforts in this pre-season so far proves he meant his words.

Carr was drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs in the fifth round in the 2008 draft. On the final play of the chiefs 2011 season, Carr intercepted a Tim Tebow pass, not a bad way to end your season and career in KC.

John L. Carr and Kathy Robinson Carr brought Brandon Carey Carr into this world May, 19th 1986 in Flint, Michigan.  He attended Grand Valley State starting 41 of his 49 games. He helped the Lakers win back-to-back NCAA Division II national championships.  Brandon also received the Defensive Back of the Year honor by the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference his senior year.

I think Brandon will improve the Dallas Cowboy defense and will be a stand out player for us for years to come. Newman was a solid player for many years. I hope Brandon Carr can be as large part of the team as Newman.

What do you think of Carr so far in this pre-season?

Vote For The LSS Cowboys Rookie Of The Year

The Dallas Cowboys 2011 Rookie class was one of the best in recent years. The Cowboys drafted a lot of talent, but even the walk-on players were a pleasant surprise.  I have learned so much over the years writing our “New to the Silver and Blue” columns.   Let’s have some fun… We are going to have a contest for LoneStarStuck.com readers to help us elect the winner of our 1st Annual LSS ROOKIE OF THE YEAR AWARD. :-)

There were 15 rookies on the team this season, but only a few of them took advantage of their opportunities and ran with it.  When those rookies were called on, it gave the starters some pause to look over their shoulders and sweat a little.

We want to know who you think deserves the honor of ” LSS Rookie Of The Year” !

Here are you five candidates:

Out of the fifteen I feel  these  five are  the most deserving of this honor.

[polldaddy poll=”5956424″]

May The Best Cowboy Rookie Win!

New to the Silver and Blue: Kevin Kowalski

If you are a Dallas Cowboy fan, you know that a lot of the most productive players current and past aren’t drafted, but undrafted free agents.

Another free agent added to the team this season is rookie center Kevin Kowalski.

Kevin is 6’2″ weighing in at 200 lbs. and playing behind center Phil Costa. Kevin has played in five games so far this season. His first snaps with Tony Romo was in a pre-season game against Minnesota, in which he handled himself amazing well since Tony had barely met him before Kevin learned he was going to play in that pre-season game.

Our offensive line coach said in a past interview ” He’s is a guy that’s always prepared, If there is anyone that’s going to come off the bench and do well it would be the guy that’s in there doing extra work and studying the tape. That’s exactly what Kevin is. Always prepared, always knows what to do.”

Kevin Kowalski, #60, was born in Macedonia, Ohio on January 2, 1989 and attended Nordonia High School where he was named to the first-team Division II All-Ohio team as a senior.

Kevin attended Toledo College and earned a degree individualized Studies. He played right guard as a freshman and was part of an offensive line that allowed just 16, sacks, tying for 19th best in the nation. He was moved to center his junior year, starting all 12 games, and anchored an offensive line that ranked 16th in the nation in total offense and 18th in passing offense. As a senior he started all 13 games at center and was invited to play in the 2011 Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama.

Kevin wasn’t overwhelmed when he had to come in against the Giants after Costa suffered from concussion like symptoms. Since Tony and Kevin don’t practice during the week there where a few communication issues in the game. Kevin commented “It’s just something that’s kind of been expected since I’ve been here, from what happened in the preseason to early on in the season; I know that I’ve been in situations where I have had to be prepared.”

“He did a great job coming in, not having had reps with me,” quarterback Tony Romo said. “I was proud of him.”

Kevin Ogletree: Trying Hard Or Hardly Trying?

I don’t know where this is coming from and how much of it just overblown, but I came across an article on ESPN.com that took a swipe at Kevin Ogletree’s character.

Tim MacMahon believes that the Kevin Ogletree, who kept making plays a year ago in the Alamodome when he was fighting for a roster spot, no longer has that same sense of urgency in this training camp.

The Cowboys still like Ogletree’s potential and believe he was a steal as an undrafted free agent. He showed his promise by making plays in a limited role as a rookie. Other than Dez Bryant, there might not be a more explosive receiver on the roster. He will be on the 53-man roster.

However, if Ogletree wants a significant role this season, he better flip the switch soon.

Ogletree has dropped too many balls this camp. He has failed to fight for the ball too many times. An example came on a crossing route during Thursday morning’s practice, when he allowed undrafted rookie cornerback Bryan McCann to knock the ball out of his hands.

MacMahon also says that he has Cowboys sources that are saying Ogletree has a sense of entitlement. That may or may not be true, but sometimes confidence in one’s abilities can be mistaken for a sense of urgency.

I don’t mind seeing a little swagger on the team, and would especially love to see that among some of the veterans.

The article concludes by saying that Ogletree doesn’t appear to have the right attitude. Really? One week into training camp and we’re already making judgment calls?

Needless to say, I disagree with MacMahon on this one, and I’d advise him to let the rest of training camp play out before calling someone out.

Dez Bryant says no to Roy Williams

With training camp finally under way I was happy to finally get some news from the Cowboys this past weekend. All the practicing and the competition at so many positions is under way. I also loved the Kickoff show Friday night. For those who have not seen it you can watch it here.

http://www.dallascowboys.com/multimedia/multimedia_archives.cfm?id=0349574E-DC9B-2E5A-07C2F9A15D499F94

The one thing that stood out to me this weekend was Dez Bryant refusing to carry Roy Williams shoulder pads after Sunday mornings practice. Bryant does not believe in any rookie initiations.

“I’m not doing it,” Bryant said. “I feel like I was drafted to play football, not carry another player’s pads.”

“If I was a free agent, it would still be the same thing. I just feel like I’m here to play football. I’m here to try to help win a championship, not carry someone’s pads. I’m saying that out of no disrespect to [anyone].”

“I don’t believe in that at all,” Bryant said. “We have a goal here. It’s not about playing games. It’s all about just trying to do the right thing and achieve our goal.”

http://www.dallascowboys.com/multimedia/multimedia_archives.cfm?id=0C9F2A74-E00D-E1FA-A3E6F28693417F2C

Roy Williams does believe rookies should be doing some things for the veterans just like he had to do as a rookie.

“Everybody has to go through it,” Williams said. “I had to go through it. No matter if you’re a No. 1 pick or the 7,000th pick, you’ve still got to do something when you’re a rookie.

“I carried pads. I paid for dinners. I paid for lunches. I did everything I was supposed to do, because I didn’t want to be that guy.”

I love that Dez Bryant refuses to carry Williams shoulder pads and is saying all the right things about the team being first and working towards a goal. With that kind of thinking from Bryant it won’t be long before Williams is carrying Bryant’s shoulder pads. Maybe Williams should concentrate more on catching the football then bothering the player that is most likely going to replace him.

Other news from camp is that supplemental pick Josh Brent suffered a broken hand in practice Sunday morning. Coach Wade Philips is hoping Brent can return to practice Monday. Any kind of time missed will only hurt Brent for his chances of making the team.

Keith Brooking is only practicing once a day as he recovers from off-season knee surgery. Although Brooking says he feels good, he understands that at his age it will do his body good to be held out a little during training camp.

Who is this man? Nate “The Kitchen” Newton has taken care of himself due to some serious health issues as he approached almost 400 pounds. On April 19th Newton had weight loss surgery and has since lost 132 pounds. He is now down to 263 pounds and is feeling good.

http://www.dallascowboys.com/multimedia/multimedia_archives.cfm?id=0C11E73B-B8F8-D4C3-7C8709FD1FF644C3

Orlando Scandrick is working through the pain of his broken finger and knows that training camp is even more important because of the work he missed during the teams OTAs.

“I’ve still got some pain but I’m working through it,” Scandrick said. “Just have to be tough. I just need time. I need the practice. I could feel my timing was off. I felt a little rusty out there.”

Today Is Deadline For Tendering Offers To Restricted Free Agents

Today is a big day for the Cowboys as they must tender offers to their 13 restricted free agents by the 11:00 pm CST deadline tonight.

You can be sure that both wide receiver Miles Austin and safety Gerald Sensabaugh will both receive high tenders from the Cowboys and that neither will be going anywhere.

Clarence E. Hill of the Star-Telegram speculates that Austin will receive the highest tender possible — a one-year salary of $3.168 million and compensation of a first- and third-round pick if he signs with another team.

Sensabaugh will likely be tagged with the first-round tender of $2.62 million. If he signs with another team, the Cowboys would get a first-round pick in return.

The other Cowboys restricted free agents include:

DT Stephen Bowen
G Cory Procter
G Duke Preston
DE Jason Hatcher
NT Junior Siavii
WR Sam Hurd
S Pat Watkins
OT Pat McQuistan
DE Marcus Spears
PK Shaun Suisham
CB Cletis Gordon

Of those eleven, I suspect that 3-4 of them may not be returning next season including Suisham and Gordon.

I was very surprised when the Cowboys decided not to place the franchise tag on Miles Austin last week which would have paid him a guaranteed one-year, $9.52 million deal that would’ve required another team to give up two first-round picks as compensation for signing him to a non-matching offer sheet.

I was a little worried that we might be exposing Miles Austin to a slight risk of employment elsewhere if another team should beat the Cowboys tender, but felt more at ease after reading this in the Dallas Morning News.

Not many teams in league history have been willing to relinquish a first- and third-round pick for a restricted free agent. Almost none, in fact. In 1998, Bill Parcells brought restricted running back Curtis Martin with him from the Patriots to the Jets. The Patriots were unwilling to match the Jets’ six-year, $36 million offer sheet and took a first- and third-rounder in return. Eighteen players received the high tender over the next 10 years. None were pried away by a rival’s offer sheet.

Good to know…

IGOR TIME!!

From the MICKAROO, Mickey Spanola of DallasCowboys.com:

Free agent defensive end Igor Olshanky came into town during Thursday’s commotion for a visit, and the Dallas Cowboys made sure he didn’t leave town on Friday without signing a contract, which is exactly what he did around 5:30 p.m. (CST), putting his name on a contract. Olshanky, a five-year starter in San Diego, signed a four-year, $18 million contract, with roughly $8 million guaranteed.

This move is in direct response to three-year starter Chris Canty signing his unrestricted free-agency deal with the New York Giants this past Saturday, leaving the Cowboys without much experience at the right defensive end spot. The only backups of note are three-year veterans Stephen Bowen and Jason Hatcher. The Cowboys did sign least years’s practice squad defensive end Marcus Dixon to the 80-man roster.

I like it! More info to come…………………

Former Cowboy Wide Receiver Terry Glenn Arrested

Sporting News is reporting that former starter Terry Glenn was arrested last week for public intoxication and possession of marijuana.

The Dallas Observer reports Irving (Texas) police were called on January 25 after alleged reports came in that Glenn had been spotted roaming the halls of an Irving hotel naked.

The report indicates that he spent the night in jail and posted bail the next morning.

Glenn played for the Cowboys from 2003-2007 and is currently a free agent.

Football On My Mind…….

Hey guys, just a few things to discuss. First, I would like to congratulate the Arizona Cardinals and Pittsburgh Steelers on reaching Super Bowl 43. Much props to both teams. Honestly, I am pulling for the Cards on this one. On a side note as well, Imagine if Terrell Owens would of pulled that Boldin Act yesterday after they won. ESPN would of been all over that. On to the Boys………..

First I would LOVE to say that Demarcus Ware was, to put it eloquently, ROBBED. I will give James Harrison as much props as the next guy but he is nowhere near Ware’s capability. In Harrison, you get a great passrusher. In Ware, you get the complete package. This just goes to show the unwavering Bias that is thrown, or has been thrown for decades at your Dallas Cowboys. I was quite honestly shocked that Emmitt Smith won the league MVP in 1995 and thats when I thought girls were still icky!! Demarcus, you dominated the defensive side of the ball all year long. You deserved it more than anyone in the football land. Kind of ironic that Ware wins the Dick Butkus award for the NFL’s best linebacker. I thought that was Harrison, oh wait….

Second, Terrell Owens is one of my favriote players on this team. I honestly believe ESPN is on a witch hunt to make T.O. a cancer. He is the only guy all year that showed any emotion on the field when this went wrong. For you Cowboy fans out there wanting T.O. out i can only say this. If T.O. is gone next year and we dont replace him, this team doesnt win 8 games next year. Easy as that. Yes, T.O. is getting old by NFL standards but the guy is still the best receiver on this team. Unless Dallas releases T.O. and then signs a Pro Bowl reciever somehow then I would probably be ok with it, but quite honestly it aint happening. Terrell Owens will be a Dallas Cowboy next year. I would be shocked if he isnt. I just got my authentic T.O. jersey this year too. Damn It!!

Third, Ray Lewis is gonna be a free agent and there is talk Jerry Jones is gonna go after the guy big time. I say, I LOVE IT. Ray Lewis is exactley what this defense needs. I know I am gonna get alot of slack for this but I really love the Ravens defense. Its a punch you in the mouth and point and laugh at you in the face kind of defense we need. They are nasty, mean and play as one unit. Thats all due to Ray Lewis. The guy plays with alot of emotion and wears his heart on his sleeve. He makes average players around him great. I would honestly as well be shocked if Baltimore lets him go and doesnt franchise him, but I would love to see the guy in a Cowboy uniform. Hey Mosh, get those Ray Lewis jerseys orders ready for just in case.

Fourth, Brian Stewart was fired. Big Deal. I believe the real problem of the Cowboys awkward 2008 season is deeper than Brian Stewart. Wade Phillips for one should not be coaching this team. Wade Phillips is an awesome defensive coach but when it comes to Head Coaching the guy sucks. With this many Stars on this team, you have to have a disciplinarian. A Jimmy Johnson / Bill Cowher type of coach. Its very sad, frustrating, depressing and everything else x100 the way our season went. And every week after a loss, Phillips just sugar coated everything. I would love to see the Cowboys bring in Mike Martz to see if he can recreate the Greatest Show on Turf. The guy also doesnt take bullcrap from anybody. Thats not gonna happen cause Garrett wasnt offered a head coaching job anywhere.

And Fifth, finally, I am ecstatic the Boys will be in San Antonio for training camp this year. I will be there for a whole week. Can’t wait for that to happen. Thats all for now.  

Player News: Marion’s Got Protection, Flozell Signs

Restricted free agent Marion Barber has been tendered for $2.562 million. Any team looking to propose an offer to Barber would also have to give up a first and third round draft pick if the Cowboys failed to match the offer. I think that pretty much ensures Barber will be a Cowboy next season. The Cowboys will probably offer the Pro Bowl running back a long-term contract after free agency.

Chris Canty was also tendered for $2.017 million, any team going after Canty would have to give up a first round draft pick in the deal. Canty is a 3-year veteran who had an impressive year in ’07. I would like to see him remain in Dallas.

Guard Joe Berger received the $927,000 tender.

Irving native Tyson Thompson was not offered a tender and therefore will probably no longer be in Dallas.

Fullback Oliver Hoyte was waived today. He spent alot of time injured and never really brought anything to the table. His football career may come to an end.

Unrestricted free agents include Julius Jones, Keith Davis, Flozell Adams, Nate Jones and Jacques Reeves. The Cowboys may go up until the 11pm deadline negotiating with Flozell Adams. I wouldn’t be surprised if Keith Davis ends up in Miami. As for Julius, Nate and Jacques, good luck out there guys!

***UPDATE: The Dallas Morning News is reporting that Flozell Adams has agreed to a multi-year contract, terms to be announced tomorrow.***

Barber and Cowboys to Talk This Week

According to reports at the Star-Telegram, the Cowboys are expect to start talks with Marion Barber and his agent this week at the NFL Combine. Barber is a restricted free agent that had a very impressive season this past year and looks to make a long term deal with the Cowboys.

For those of you who remain interested in Darren McFadden, I don’t think this is going to happen. The Cowboys have $13 million left in their salary cap and have to take care of their free agents and draft picks. McFadden would cost the Cowboys a lot of money that they just don’t have to spend. Stranger things have happened but I don’t see it.

Personally, I think the Cowboys should hold on to Marion Barber and draft another running back. They are going to need a backup. Julius Jones is definitely not sticking around and Tyson Thompson did horrible last year, even thought he didn’t get much of a chance. I’m not sure how many running backs are available in free agency, I doubt very many good ones. They are definitely hard to come by.

Lock up Barber! Do it NOW!

 

Looking at Free Agents

Unrestricted Free Agents (6)

  • LT Flozell Adams
  • S Ken Hamlin
  • RB Julius Jones
  • S Keith Davis
  • CB Jacques Reeves
  • CB Nate Jones

Restricted Free Agents (5)

  • RB Marion Barber
  • DE Chris Canty
  • LS L.P. Ladouceur
  • RB Tyson Thompson
  • OL Joe Berger

Exclusive Rights Free Agents (4)

  • DE Stephen Bowen
  • OL Cory Procter
  • CB Evan Oglesby
  • TE Tony Curtis

In my opinion the Cowboys must keep Marion Barber, Chris Canty, Ken Hamlin and Tony Curtis. I believe all of those players will help the future of this team. Some might add Flozell in with those names, but he just has too many penalties, and we all know when it comes down to it, penalties can make or break a game. Free agency signing period begins February 29th.

Cowboys fans have fallen in love with Marion Barber. With his rough style that earned him 10 touchdowns and 975 yards as the back-up running back to Julius Jones, its clear why they love him.

 

 

Chris Canty started to shine this year. The 25-year old defensive end had 3.5 sacks and 43 tackles. He is a restricted free agent, but is expected to sign a deal similiar to Jay Ratliff’s 5 year-20 million.

 

 

Ken Hamlin, who signed a one year deal last year, has had a successful year. He had 5 interceptions, 62 tackles (45 solo) and will start in the Pro Bowl next month. That’s more than enough reasons why the Cowboys should give him a contract.

 

 

Tony Curtis, the third string tight end, showed great potential earning 3 touchdowns from only 3 receptions in 2007. He also looked really good in pre-season. Being an exclusive rights free agent, he really has no say in the matter, but I’m sure he will be a Cowboy in 2008.