Weekly Game Balls: Preseason Week 4

This week’s offensive game ball goes to Kevin Ogletree.

In the finale of the short preseason, Kevin Ogletree once again impressed and pretty much locked in his spot on the 53-man roster. Rookie Ogletree made it easy for coaches to make the decision to cut Isaiah Stanback and go with him as the 5th wide receiver.

“Every ball is important to me, every down, every play,” Ogletree said. “So when you take that approach and you’re as hungry as I am to try to make the team, you do what you can.”

Ogletree caught two passes for a total on 14 yards and a touchdown in the first quarter before leaving last Friday’s game with an eye contusion.


This week’s defensive game ball goes to Pat Watkins.

Pat Watkins dominated the game last Friday proving he deserved his spot on the roster. The fourth-year safety made a clutch tackle on a fourth-and-one with 1:59 left in the first half that prevented a Vikings touchdown. Then he blocked a field goal with nine seconds left on the clock, to end the first half and prevent another Vikings scoring opportunity. Finally, he opened the third quarter with a a dazzling 23-yard interception return for a touchdown. It was a big day for the Cowboys’ backup safety.

“I had a feeling like I was going to have a good game, and I had a couple people send me text messages with predictions,” Watkins said. “Someone predicted six tackles and an interception. Somebody else predicted eight tackles. So after that maybe I need more predictions to help me out.”

Whatever it takes Watkins, keep up the good work!


Congratulations to Kevin and Pat for their outstanding play.

Runners-up: Steven Octavien for his 44-yard interception returned for a touchdown and Jesse Holley for his brave 82-yard punt return for a touchdown that in turn won the game.

Falling Miles Behind?

Miles AustinConflicting reports across the Cowboys media outlets have me concerned about Miles Austin. The wide receiver who was expected to step up this season hasn’t really given anyone reason to believe he can do his share for this team.

During the offseason Austin visited the New York Jets and fans were concerned about him possibly leaving the team. Turns out in hindsight that might not have been such a bad idea.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a Miles Austin ‘hater’, I really like the guy and we’ve seen his potential and his smile lights up the stadium when he’s hauling in touchdowns. However, can he stay healthy?

Well, now they say Austin should be back to practice on Wednesday after being sidelined and missing numerous practices due to a sore hamstring. He was out last season, and this isn’t what you would call a nice start to a fresh new season.

The same thing can be said of Sam Hurd. Even our new number one Roy Williams has already been injured. These guys are way too young to be hurt so much, so early.

I should mention that Hurd and Williams did practice fully on Monday. I’m pretty sure Roy will be A-OK. Oh, and as for our youngest and newest receiver – Kevin Ogletree’s eye contusion seems to be all better as well.

Thank God we have a killer running back squad and arguably the best tight ends in the league, or I might be a little bit worried about our offense. Crazy thing is, there are people that have been arguing this point since the release of ‘you know who’ and I’ve ignored it and stood up for the WRs.

But you know what, maybe finally letting go of Isaiah Stanback is a sign that the ‘Boys have no more patience for lingering injuries…

Honestly, I hope they all recover and have a great year. That may be too optimistic but hey that’s what fans do!

P.S. Stay safe and healthy Patrick Crayton!

It’s All Good – Stanback Out, Ogletree In


I have been saying all pre-season long, that Isaiah Stanback should not be on this team. With all of his injuries throughout his career with the Cowboys, I couldn’t understand why he was still here. Well, on Saturday the Cowboys finally realized what we were all thinking, and finally cut Stanback to trim the roster to 52 players. You have to remember the NFL is a business and cuts are a part of it, if you don’t play well or play at all, you should be cut.

And by the way, Stanback, who was a converted quarterback trying to transition into a wide receiver, was picked up by the New England Patriots as a backup quarterback on Saturday.


Replacing his spot on the roster is the up and coming Kevin Ogletree, who had himself an outstanding pre-season and impressed many coaches, players and fans alike in the process. Ogletree even scored a touchdown in the final pre-season game to put the icing on the cake and secure a spot on the roster. With oft injured reeivers Sam Hurd and Miles Austin already on the team, having Ogletree on board will give the Cowboys some solid depth at the position.

All’s well that ends well…

This post was edited by Joe D.

Poll Results: Key Position Battles

At the beginning of Training Camp we asked this question:

Which of these key position battles do you think will be the most interesting?

Poll ResultsThe results were a dead heat between Jenkins/Scandrick (38%) and Crayton/Austin (38%).  In third place was the battle at offensive guard position with Kyle Kosier and Montrae Holland who received 15% of the votes. Finally, linebackers Bobby Carpenter and Jason Williams received a measly 8%.

This poll is full of so much irony. In the end Mike Jenkins and Orlando Scandrick have been told they are both starters who will alternate starts and playing time. Miles Austin didn’t really show us that he deserves to start over vet Patrick Crayton. Kosier and Holland?… boring. Bobby Carpenter and Jason Williams, well that was easily answered when Williams got injured.

Maybe we should have had a 5th choice between Isaiah Stanback and Kevin Ogletree, but who knew?

New poll: What are your expectations for the upcoming season?

Cowboys Finalize 53 Man Roster

Straight from the Cowboys official website, here are the final cuts.

Injured Reserve
Stephen Hodge

Travis Bright
Courtney Brown
Rudy Carpenter
Scott Chandler
Julius Crosslin
Marcus Dixon
Tearrius George
Ryan Gibbons
Jeremy Haynes
Jesse Holley
Mike Jefferson
Manuel Johnson
Keon Lattimore (waived/injured)
Mike Mickens
Willie Reid
Derreck Robinson
Asaph Schwapp
Jonas Seawright
DeAngelo Smith
Isaiah Stanback
Matt Stewart
DeAngelo Willingham

Young Receivers Showing Something In Camp

Training camp is well underway and there have been a lot great things happening in San Antonio. From what I have been reading one of the biggest surprises in training camp has been the play of our young receivers Sam Hurd, Miles Austin, and the other receivers.

Sam Hurd and Miles Austin have been vying for the third receiver slot. They both have been making some acrobatic catches. This is great news, however this is training camp and we will have to wait to see what happens in a real game.

One low spot was Isaiah Stanback tweaking his hamstring and was out of practice, this is not a good sign for him. He has really been injury plagued since he has been with the Cowboys.

Not sure if Jesse Holley can make the team after winning Michael Irvin’s reality show “4th and Long”, but he has been making some plays as well.

Right now, Patrick Crayton is the second wide receiver behind Roy Williams, but we will have to wait and see if the keeps it.

We all know that the receivers would be a big question mark this year, but lets hope they can make their mark.

Guess Who’s Injured, Again?

Dallas Morning News Cowboys blog reports that Isaiah Stanback is injured again:

Wide receiver Isaiah Stanback underwent arthroscopic surgery to repair a meniscus tear in his right knee.

Stanback suffered the injury in Tuesday’s workout at Standridge Stadium but attempted to practice Wednesday without much success.

He is expected to be ready for training camp that starts on July 28.

Oh man, not again. This guy has been nothing but injury prone from the start. Jerry Jones has so much invested in the Stanback project and continues to talk like he’s worth the time, money and roster spot, even though he’s only played in 10 games in 2 years.

I hope I’m wrong, I really really do.

Thanks to Nate for the tip.

How Do We Replace T.O.’s Game?

So here we are three days after we let Owens go, a huge mistake in my opinion. How exactly are we going to replace his offense?

Roy Williams will assume the number one spot although he has yet to prove he deserves it. He is paid like a number one receiver, but I cannot see him commanding the same respect that defenses showed Terrell.

As of right now Miles Austin is slotted as the number two receiver, with Crayton still in the three slot. Miles has game, but a number two receiver? I’m not so sure about that. Crayton is where he needs to be. He has proven he can thrive in the slot position.

Then there is Sam Hurd and Isaiah Stanback. Hurd was showing some promise in 2007, but injuries kept him from playing all of last season. Stanback in my eyes is a bust, he has shown little promise as a receiver.

Which leads me wonder, is this who Tony will throw to in 2009?

Now some might think Witten will step up another notch, but I actually think losing T.O. is going to hurt him more than any other player on this team. I have a feeling defenses will be doubling Witten and leave Roy in one on one coverage. Now if Roy can run some decent routes and make some catches it will ease the pressure off of Witten, but that remains to be seen.

Martellus Bennett could be a wild-card in all of this. If he can take the next step, he may be able to make some big plays with all the attention focused on Witten. Lets hope his mind is on the game and that he has matured in the offseason, because he has big-time talent. 

Is Jerry going to  add a veteran to move into the two spot? There isn’t much out there in free agency to fill the spot, Marvin Harrison maybe? Other than that, the best available WR is Bobby Engram, yikes!

There are some rumors that Torry Holt will be released and that the Browns are shopping Braylon Edwards… either of these two would fit in nicely across from Roy.

How about the draft?

Picking 51st in the draft, makes it unlikely that we will grab a receiver that can jump right into the starting lineup like a Michael Crabtree would. I have seen the name Juaquin Iglesias show up a lot in mock drafts for the Cowboys. He is a 6’0″ 205 lb. senior from Oklahoma, and has decent speed, running a 4.45 40, but jumping right in as a starter is a long shot at best .

I don’t know about you, but this Cowboys fan is extremely concerned about our receiving corps. I am hoping that Jerry Jones has something up his sleeve or it could be a very ugly season.

Anyone Have Any Spare Receivers?

Good morning Cowboy fans,
The Cowboys got out of Texas Stadium with another pre-season win (and thank goodness the last one) or should I say they limped out? That’s right if you happen to be to busy to attend the game or watch on television because you knew it would be a “roster cut” game then you missed Sam Hurd go out with a sprained ankle. Hurd was expected to be the third receiver when Terry Glenn was cut 30 minutes after camp started. Is this an omen? Does Terry Glenn have some kind of spell over the Dallas receivers? Well this writer has never been superstitious, but I have been known to change my Cowboys jerseys 2 or 3 times during a game if things are not going well! Hurd was the third casualty at the receiver position in the pre-season after losing Miles Austin and Isaiah Stanback in earlier pre-season games. None of the injuries are season ending ones but all will require a few weeks to get back and none of the three will be ready for the Cleveland opener.
Seriously we are just experiencing a series of bad luck in the receiver core and it will get better. We were fortunate the last couple of years that we were virtually injury free. I guess it is just our turn, or maybe it is the Terry Glenn hoax. Either way we are left with actually two experienced receivers in Terrell “T.O.” Owens and Patrick Crayton. I guess they will have to be our “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid” when the Cowboys ride into the “Dog Pound” this Sunday. The most interesting thing about the receiver injury situation though is that “cut down” day to the magic 53 is Saturday. Who would have ever thought Danny Amendola or Mike Jefferson would now look so valuable to the Cowboys roster?
Now the rumors still continue to fly that the Cowboys are talking to Atlanta about veteran Joe Horn and Anquan Boldin still wants out of Arizona. The only problem with those two prospects is that Horn is almost as old as “Crazy Ray” and earlier in the year when Jerry Jones talked to Arizona about Boldin, the price was way to steep. Well Jerry if you still have any ideas about acquiring Boldin now, after the rash of injuries we have had, I would only venture to guess the price just went up!
I will close with good news that most of you already know. Adam “Pacman” Jones is now officially a Cowboy after receiving word from the Commissioner’s office he has been reinstated. Now “Pacman” spend your evenings with quality friends and prove to me what I have been preaching to the nay-sayers and the haters ever since I got word you would be wearing the sacred star. You truly are a superstar on and off the field. Good luck Adam, I am rooting for you as all true Cowboy fans are.

Something Still Missing………..

The 2008 season is finally here… 

However, it feels like something is missing…

Flashes of Romo to Owens on a 45-yard post pattern is something that I cannot wait for, yet something is missing. Barber bulldozing the Giants defense for a 10-yard scamper, when it should of been a 2-yard loss is something to see, yet something is still missing. So what is missing?

It’s the guy opposite Owens, someone that can instill fear into the hearts of opposing secondaries… that is what’s missing.

Last year, the ‘Boys offense broke all kinds of records. (Cowboys records that is.) No quarterback in Cowboys history has ever had the year that Tony Romo had last year. The Cowboys’ offense at times looked unstoppable and scary. So why am I complaining?

Because the reason why the Cowboys lost to the Giants last year was arguably the missing piece… a top tier second receiver.

Yes, I know we had Terry Glenn back at the end, but he looked more like Aaron Glenn. Terry Glenn was at best at 60 % last year. He never had a chance. Patrick Crayton tried to step into his place, but when it mattered most, he messed up on a route in which Romo had him targeted for the go ahead touchdown late in the game. This is not a knock on Crayton, personally I like the kid ,but lets face it… he is not the solid second receiver this team needs if they plan to go all the way this season. He is, by all accounts a solid third receiver.

I really hope either Miles Austin, Sam Hurd, Isaiah Stanback or Danny Amendola blossom this year. I hope that one of them lights it up and can compliment Owens and give the opposition another weapon to worry about. I like all our receivers, but if one of them doesn’t step up in a big way, we are in serious trouble. Imagine for some reason Owens goes down… who’ will be your number one receiver now? Crayton? Hurd? Lets get real…

This years offense is the same as last. Jerry Jones didn’t go out of his way to try and land a another starting receiver through free agency or the draft. And that is the missing ingredient that would transform the Cowboys into the best team in the NFL.

Personally, I am not comfortable with fielding the same team we had last year at the wide receiver position. Jerry Jones should have acquired a solid wide receiver whether by trade or free agency. I know that Jones would like nothing more than to leave Texas Stadium as Super Bowl Champions and go into the new stadium as defending champs. How awesome would that be? New stadium… same great tradition.

So what do you think about our receiving corps? Are you satisfied or would you like to see the Cowboys try and land another top receiver?

Player News: Offensive Concerns

I just wanted to share some tidbits I found while browsing Cowboys news. Not much is going on but Jerry Jones did share some of his thoughts on some positions and players.

Jerry Jones said he is confident that Terry Glenn will be a factor next year. He admitted he hadn’t talked to Glenn but from what he understood from other inside sources, Glenn is going to play without surgery and will be ready to go.

There is concern about injury in the position after what happened with Glenn and Owens in the postseason. Behind those two veteran players are Patrick Crayton, Sam Hurd, Miles Austin and Isaiah Stanback for starters. The Cowboys have some nice up-and-coming players but what happens if or when your older veterans get injured? Good question…

Jones also talked about the possibility that Flozell Adams may not be with the Cowboys next year. He said a deal could still be made but in the case that he leaves, Leonard Davis could start at left tackle.

Despite his tendencies to rack up false start penalties, Flozell was a great part of Tony Romo’s success. Covering Romo’s blind side is a huge job that Flozell handled very well. Davis played right guard and was also elected to the Pro Bowl in that position, so if he moves to LT we in turn lose a Pro Bowl right guard. I think we need to try and keep Flozell if at all possible.


Injury Report: Week 11

WR Terry Glenn (knee)

G Leonard Davis (ankle)

CB Anthony Henry (ankle)
WR Isaiah Stanback (shoulder)

Despite rumors of sightings of Terry Glenn in the Cowboys locker room, Terry Glenn is still OUT! And don’t expect to see him next week either. IF he comes back at all this season, it may not be until the playoffs.

Guard Leonard Davis sprained his ankle in practice on Wednesday. The good news is that he walked off the field on his own following the injury, the bad news is if he can’t play Cory Procter will take his place. Procter has never played a game at guard. Davis is a huge reason, Romo is having such a fantastic year.

Anthony Henry is slowly coming back from his ankle injury in late September. He has played in the last two weeks but has yet to start a game since the injury.

Rookie Isaiah Stanback is listed as probable after injurying his shoulder two weeks ago during his NFL debut. If they are not sure he can handle returns, then he will probably be inactive Sunday. Stanback took over Tyson Thompson’s job on special teams two weeks ago. Last week Austin Miles and Nathan Jones shared returns.

Just to clarify Tyson Thompson is not hurt. He has been demoted due to lack of production on special teams. In 2007, Thompson averages just 23.6 yards on kickoff returns, which isn’t bad but isn’t great either.