Back In The Saddle Again – Training Camp Notes

Jerry Jones and Wade Phillips are all smiles at the start of Cowboys Training Camp

I skimmed through all the different beat writer reports from today’s Cowboys Training Camp, and summarized all of the information for you.

Training Camp Player Valuations – In terms of talking about players after practice, Phillips doesn’t like to do it. He feels he needs to see some practice tape before talking about how well a player did or how bad a player did. Phillips said it gives him a chance to give better answers to questions.

“You may see a player do something real good in practice and the rest of the plays didn’t play well,” Phillips said. “Like a guy in a game, you think he played well, and he didn’t play well at all.”

Ain’t That A Kick In The Pants – The coach made a note that David Buehler isn’t the only placekicker on the roster. Delbert Alvarado is also a kicker but hardly gets mentioned because after the team released Connor Hughes, it was assumed Buehler had no competition. Even Buehler said he’s competing against himself.

“Alvarado did well, and that’s why we kept him in the spring,” Phillips said.

Safety First – Does Pat Watkins have a shot to become the starting free safety over Alan Ball? Phillips said he does and that there is competition at almost every position. However, Phillips would like to see Watkins, who is a strong special teams player, be more consistent on defense. Watkins did have a nice breakup of a long pass Saturday.

He Ain’t All That – *Dez Bryant, the rookie wide receiver, was impressive in his first practice. Phillips said it’s not the best debut he ever saw.

“I don’t know if he looked any better than Steve Largent when he came in,” Phillips said. “Cris Carter when he came in, I’ve seen some pretty good ones.”

Not To Be Nosy, But – *Marcus Spears is still the starting defensive end, but he will get some snaps at nose tackle during training camp. The Cowboys did some of this last year with him. Phillips doesn’t believe it’s the start of something long term for Spears.

“I would be comfortable with him playing there,” Phillips said of Spears at the nose. “He’s a smart player and he’s a good run player already, and normally nose guard is a run-player position. [Jay] Ratliff has taken it to a different level; you don’t see nose guards getting six and eight and ten sacks. But I think Spears can fill that role as a run player and I think he’ll do a good job there.”

We Kneed You Man – *Linebacker Keith Brooking might miss the second practice Sunday. He’s fine, but Cowboys want to bring him along slowly because he had minor knee surgery in the offseason. Brooking looked pretty good Saturday knocking down a pass and moving around pretty good.

MartyB TV Off The Air – Wade Phillips said he does not expect Martellus Bennett to miss much practice time in training camp with the sprained left ankle he suffered last week while working out. The Cowboys placed Bennett on the non-football injury list because he did not suffer the injury while under the Cowboys’ care.

Morning Radio and the Joy of a Quiet Offseason

Driving into work this morning I was flipping between Fox Sports Radio and ESPN Radio on XM. Most of the talk was about baseball and March Madness, but for a few minutes I heard some ranting regarding the new Jets/Giants stadium and their dilemma about who will open the season in the new home. After a coin toss by the commissioner it was decided that the Giants will open the stadium on Sunday September 12th and the Jets will open on the following Monday night to the huge MNF crowd.

First of all, can you imagine your team sharing a stadium with another team, even if they were in the other conference? I still find it ridiculous that they aren’t even in the state of New York. I guess some could argue that the Dallas Cowboys don’t play in Dallas but Arlington is a hell of a lot closer than say Louisiana or Oklahoma.

Another topic discussed on my morning drive radio programming also featured the Jets and their newly acquired running back LaDainian Tomlinson. The poor guy has gone from being the best in the biz to being a 3rd string back that fans hope they never see on the field. I’ve always liked LT, and I find it really sad how the world of sports works sometimes.

It seems the Jets really are trying to make some noise this offseason, but none of their moves have impressed me yet. In case you missed it they grabbed former Cowboy Nick Folk to a one year deal back in February. Their veteran kicker Jay Feely isn’t worried at all and expects a new deal despite the signing.

As for the Cowboys, everything is really quiet right now. Next month comes the draft and the release of the 2010 schedule.

StarStruck Graphics

For now you can relax and enjoy Spring Break, only five or so months until Preseason football… 😉

Bringing The Heat

Before I get into my thoughts on the game and what it means for us, I want to make one small point.  FIRE NICK FOLK!!!!!!!!!!!. I am so sick and tired of them making excuses for him. He has lost his edge. They showed footage of pre game warm-ups by Nick Folk. If I am correct I believe they showed 7 attempts WITHOUT a holder. How many of those attempts did he make? NONE!!!!!!! How can you sit back and watch your “struggling” kicker  miss several warm-ups before game and then when the game is on the line, put him in??  That makes absolutely no sense to me. I am also totally against Romo holding kicks. What other team in the NFL, NCAA, High school or any other league you want to bring up has their starting QB holding kicks? None!!! When Kris Brown of the Texans missed those critical field goals for the Texans this year, did Kubiak think, hey I have an idea; let’s put Matt Schaub back there to hold the kicks so that Kris Brown can make them, no he did not. Again, FIRE NICK FOLK!!!!!

As for what this game means for us this season, we are one step closer to the playoffs. We need help from SF this weekend by taking down the Eagles. Also, being the die hard Cowboys fan that I am, it makes me sick to my stomach to even think about saying this, but we really need the Redskins to beat the Giants. Wow admitting that I want the skins to win is even hard to type but it has to be said.

Now for the game. YEAH BABY!! WOOOHOOOO!!! WAY TO GO BOYS!!!! Ok got that out of the way. We finally got to see the FULL potential that the cowboys have on the field each and every week. Romo and the offense looked flawless. The defense was brutal. The game was AMAZING. On the field Romo was the better of the 2 quarterbacks going 22/34 for a total of 333 yards and 1 touchdown with ZERO interceptions or fumbles and his ability to avoid the rush was able to get him 4 rushes for 21 yards. Our #1 receiver Miles Austin once again showed us why letting T.O. go was the best option for the team with 7 receptions for 139 yards and a touchdown. Jason Whitten had a good game with clutch catches when it mattered most, as he usually does, going for 44 yards on just 5 catches. Romo also distributed the ball well to several other options, giving the rest of our receivers and our running backs a total of 10 catches for 129 yards. Once again proving that the Dallas passing game is a force to be recon with.

Rushing rushing rushing. There is not much more to say about our ground game than, MARION BARBER!!!!!!! That man is a beast and was not going to be denied. Although he only had 17 rushing attempts he went for a hard fought 62 yards and 2 touchdowns. Felix Jones made his presence known not only on his 14 carries for 58 yards but also in the return game averaging 30 yards with one return of 41 yards. Let just say this is one ground game that was not going to be denied.

Ok, say it with me, DEFENSE!!! DEFENSE!!! DEFENSE!!! Wow what a performance our defense put up. Anthony Spencer is coming into his own and making all teams account for him. Our secondary is making other teams passing games quiver. Our linebackers are making running backs think maybe we should pass the ball more often. And then there is the man. The best defensive player in the league. The man that gets thru double teams to force QB’s to make errant throws, picks and run for their lives. Of course, you know I am talking about Demarcus Ware. After last week when all of our hearts stopped and the city of Dallas came to a complete stop and everyone was holding their breath, while Ware was being carted off the field, no one knew if he would play this week. Well, as we all know he did play and once again he dominated. He had a total of 2 sacks with 2 forced fumbles, and of course the key forced fumble at the end of the game with ten seconds left in the game to seal the victory for the Cowboys.

The Cowboys as a whole during the game Dominated every aspect of the game We had more first downs, 24 to 23, more total net yards, 436 to 336.  Rushing yards were to our advantage 145 to 65. Our defense held the high powered offense of the Saints to only 3 points in the first half and 17 points in the game with Drew Brees passing for under 300 yards and only touchdown. A very big key to the game was third down efficiency.  While Dallas went for 8 of 15 attempts on third down with a 53% efficiency rate the Saints only converted 1 third down during the game with an efficiency rate of only 14%. Once again proving that our defense is one of the best defenses in the league. Let’s take this win and this momentum that we know have, and bring it to the next game when we go to Washington and show them that the December curse is now OVER and we are making our run to the SUPERBOWL!!!

Cowboys Fall to the Giants 31-24

Wade PhillipsDallas went to New York with high hopes and fell short, a touchdown short to be exact. Giants (7-5) walk away with the win and are only one “W” out of  first place. The Cowboys (8-4) now share the division lead with the Eagles. Never a dull moment in the NFC East.

Early on the Cowboys seemed to be controlling the game with a score of 10-0 up until the two minute warning. Then all of a sudden the Giants scored two touchdowns in less than two minutes right before halftime.

Tony Romo put up good numbers, but that just proves that stats don’t win games. Romo went 41/55, 392 yards, three touchdowns and ZERO interceptions. Romo’s 41 receptions set a new franchise record.

Roy Williams collected two touchdowns and had six receptions for 60 yards. Jason Witten came away with a career high 156 yards on 14 carries. While, Miles Austin had 10 receptions, 104 yards and one touchdown.

Romo and the receiving corps played great but those numbers mean nothing though when you lose to a division rival. And, it certainly didn’t help that the ground game never showed up. Between the three backs, Dallas only had 45 yards on the ground. All three lacked explosiveness and ran tentatively.

Nick Folk missed two field goals, and to be honest may not be a Cowboy for much longer. The Cowboys need a winner and Folk is definitely struggling lately. Many games come down to field goals and when you are in a run for the playoffs you need to be sure your kicker can make those shots.

On the defensive side of things, highlights include Jay Ratliff’s forced fumble and recover, Mike Jenkins’ interception and DeMarcus Ware had one sack. Other than that, mistakes, penalties and missed tackles were abundant.

This one is on the defense and special teams.

Jason Witten, who should have been celebrating a career best day and his 500th career catch said it best…

“We’ve got to challenge ourselves and find a way to play. We have to get back to it and forget all this December stuff. I’m not trying to avoid it or say it’s not true. We’ve got to put it away. You let another one slip and you’re really in trouble.”


Things we kept waiting for but never happened:

1. Massive Sack Attack from DeMarcus Ware and Anthony Spencer

2. Deep Passes to Miles Austin

3. The Three-Headed Monster to Wake Up

4. Urgency From the Cowboys

Fans prepare yourself, because its going to be a long week of hearing about the Cowboys record in December. The schedule doesn’t get any easier either. Coming up: Chargers, Saints, Redskins, Eagles.

I’m not saying that our season is over, I’m not saying we can’t still win the division. All I’m saying is it won’t be easy.

This loss pissed me off more than any of the others this season. Usually I get sad, but not necessarily mad. It’s passion-driven anger. It’s uncontrollable and I shouldn’t let it get the best of me. I apologize to anyone who I offended or attacked during or after this game.

Don’t worry, I will pull myself together. I’ll get over it and look forward to the next game. The team should do the same thing. I hope they take this loss personally and take it out on the next team in line.

Dallas Injury Report: Buehler Might Need MRI

Add another injury to the list. Kickoff specialist David Buehler has a a bruised pinky toe.

The report comes from Nick Eatman at

If the injuries weren’t enough from Sunday’s game, now it appears that kicker David Buehler has a bruised pinky toe on his right foot. He suffered the injury while covering a punt.

Head coach Wade Phillips said the team is aware of the injury, which occurred when the rookie was stepped on during the play.

Buehler was noticeably limping in the locker room on Monday and said it’s a painful injury. There’s a good chance he could have an MRI to check for a fracture.

While Buehler is right-footed, he said the injury would’ve been worse on his left plant foot.

If for some reason he doesn’t play, the Cowboys would at least have Nick Folk to handle the kickoffs.

Hat tip to Nate the Cowboy Ninja for the news.

Three Down, One To Go

With preseason coming to an end this weekend, I found myself asking what have we learned from these exhibition games? After all isn’t that what preseason is all about? Of course, Cowboys fans what a win every game no matter what, but when it comes to preseason its more about seeing how the backups handle their roles, and learning who should stay and who should go.

Most would agree, the starters have looked amazing. Training camp served its purpose and served it well this year. Tony Romo looks rock solid. The power of Marion Barber and Felix Jones looks unstoppable. The defense looks tough (with a few minor adjustments).

Kevin OgletreePROS

Kevin Ogletree– who knew this undrafted rookie would prove to have so much talent. I agree with the fact it is only preseason but I certainly see Ogletree making the team before Stanback.

David Buehler – many questioned drafting a kicker, more questioned him making the team, but this special teams ‘specialist’ not only has an accurate kickoff but can tackle as well.

Keith Brooking – his experience and leadership reminds me of Zach Thomas last season. Its always nice to have a veteran role model on the squad.


Corey Procter – his performance has been underwhelming and rumors persist that he will be cut.

Courtney Brown – after getting an earful from Coach Phillips in front of the cameras, Brown’s most recent pass interference penalty was possibly the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Isaiah Stanback – he has been given a few too many chances to prove he can be a reliable receiver. Keeping him on the roster any longer is just absurd, when he’s actually healthy enough to play he hasn’t shown he has what it takes to make the team.

Bobby Carpenter – another first round draft pick letdown. He most likely won’t be cut because of injuries to rookies and the lack of depth at LB. However, that doesn’t mean I have to like him.

Penalties– they have got to get better disciplined. After 3 match-ups the Cowboys have racked up 32 penalties for 300 yards.

Special Teams– too many of the penalties just listed came from special teams. Field position means too much to continuously give up yardage for holding and other pathetic penalties.


Jon Kitna– hopefully it won’t matter how Kitna played in preseason because we won’t see him take the field. Some are saying he’s not the guy, but he is only a backup after all. His age is definitely catching up with him, but in time of need he may still be able to get the job done.

Wade Phillips

I’m sure there are a few I missed. Who would you add to pros or cons? Is there anyone you are still undecided about? The Cowboys have to cut three players for tomorrow’s deadline, who will it be?

Steelers = Blue Collar “Class” Or….

Not in my opinon its more like blue collar trash I mean we all remember James Harrison in the Super Bowl holding down the Cardinals player and beating him and we all remember Hines Ward’s “Blocks” which both cases equal trash and bad sportsmanship in my opinion. It’s also my opinion that when your kicker is throwing tantrums at convient store bathrooms because of no paper towels in the dispenser is also TRASH. Im talking about none other than Jeff Reed the kicker for the Steelers. Today confirmed that Reed plead guilty to Criminal Mischief and Disorderly Conduct charges. Below is the article I found please enjoy reading and join me in my non-stop laughter at this incident.

Steelers kicker Jeff Reed has pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and criminal mischief after police say he broke a towel dispenser in a convenience store.

Reed pleaded guilty to the two summary offenses, which are similar to traffic tickets, on Friday. He was fined $543.50.

Police say Reed was infuriated Feb. 14 at a convenience store in New Alexandria, a tiny borough about 35 miles east of Pittsburgh, because its restroom didn’t have any towels.

Police say he broke the dispenser then used profane language to an employee and also outside the store.

Reed made 27 of 31 field goals and 36 of 37 PATs for 117 points in his seventh season with the Steelers, who beat the Arizona Cardinals 27-23 in the Super Bowl.

Ok so now I ask you all who have read this to comment and let me know your feelings on if the Steelers are a team of class or trash also are they really America’s Team like ESPN says or are they America’s Bums. In my opinon im going with trash and America’s Bums but everyone has different opinions and I would like to hear them. As always please suppor in it’s non-stop battle to get Jerry to resign through a petition on the site which is getting more and more signatures every time I look so fans please dont sit back and look at the site and close it, sign the petition also.

Always A True Cowboys Fan

I know that today’s loss to the division rivals has everyone completely distraught. Honestly I am speechless, but I know that I should say something and give everyone a place to get things off their chests.

This hurts. After a record-breaking season filled with such promise and hope, the season comes crashing down. Someone had to lose, and you can argue many reasons why we were the ones that had to say goodbye. But I think rather than count the ‘ifs’, maybe we should look back at the season.

What a wonderful year. Its been a blast. Think about it. Look at Jason Witten, what a year he had. Remember the helmetless run! We could learn alot from that warrior. I guarantee he will hold his head high and not look back at the mistakes, but learn from them and move forward.

Terrell Owens had a wonderful year as well. Marion Barber had a hell of a year, and really a wonderful first half in his first game as a starter. We found a kicker we can finally trust. And we learned we have many offense weapons.

Take a look at the young defense we have. DeMarcus Ware, oh what a beast! Then you throw in Chris Canty and Bradie James, the future looks bright. These guys are only going to develop. Greg Ellis, the sack monster, had a shocking year and went home with an award he can be damn proud of. We have great things to look forward to in years to come.

I know that Tony Romo is going to take a lot of criticism. He’s now 0-2 in the postseason and some may question his abilities and his big contract. But I wont give up on him. It was his first year as a starter. He started off with a bang, and continued to break records and collect wins.

But somewhere in the last part of the season it began to dwindle down. I dont know why, I dont know how, but it did.

I truly believe he has a gift. If he can overcome this, he will be even better next year. What doesn’t kill you, only makes you stronger.

This team has come a long way. Some may even call it a rebuilding year. A new head coach, many new staff members, a new quarterback…. the list goes on. I’m sure we will pick the season apart for weeks to come. But it won’t change the outcome.

The season ended today but our love for the greatest team in the country – America’s team, the Dallas Cowboys – did not end. Hold your head high, wear your colors proudly.


God Bless,


Eleven Cowboys Headed to the Pro Bowl

What a magical year for the Dallas Cowboys. America’s Team will be sending 11 of its top players to Hawaii to be honored at the Pro Bowl. This will tie the franchise record which was set back during the 90s dynasty years.


Flozell Adams, offensive tackle

Leonard Davis, guard

Andre Gurode, center

Jason Witten, tight end

Terrell Owens, wide receiver

DeMarcus Ware, linebacker

Nick Folk, kicker 


Tony Romo, quarterback

Marion Barber, running back

Ken Hamlin, safety

Terence Newman, cornerback


Cowboys News: Gramatica Released

The Cowboys released Martin Gramatica today after spending less than a month on the Injured Reserve list. Gramatica injured his hamstring during the third preseason game in Houston and was placed on the IR to open a spot on the 53-man roster.  

Gramatica can sign with another team at this time, but if he does he risks any grievance pay from the Cowboys. He received a $200,000 signing bonus in the offseason.

During Training Camp and Preseason, Gramatica had some competition for starter kicker with rookie Nick Folk. Nick Folk has been amazing in his first 3 starts, completing 6 of 7 field goal attempts (his only missed field goal was blocked).

After the failure of Mike Vanderjagt last year, Gramatica came to be a Cowboy, and with him brought hope. We wish you the best of luck Gramatica and thanks for your hard work!

Where Have All the Cowboys Gone

It’s funny how people get so offended and hurt when the team loses (understandably, I’m one of the guilty). It’s a preseason game, not a playoff game. The good thing is we can learn from the experience and it isn’t going to hurt us one bit. Of course it’s nice to win every game no matter the caliber, but sometimes it helps not to go into the season with a "big head" or overblown confidence when you start playing teams like New England and Chicago just to name a few.

I do believe that Gramatica has lost his job as starting kicker, especially if the rumors are true that he pulled a hamstring Saturday night. Missing an extra-point kick is really not the way you impress your coach when you’re battling for the starting position. Of all teams, we certainly know how much a missed kick can hurt!

If you’re wondering when to expect Greg Ellis back on the field, good luck finding the answer. No one knows or can even speculate when to expect the veteran linebacker’s return. Jerry Jones is determined that Ellis will be back, at least that’s what he is saying in front of the cameras. I’ve heard a third medical opinion is being sought. Expect to see rookie Anthony Spencer on the field in his place when the season kicks off.

Several other injured Cowboys missed the game on Saturday. Anthony Fasano, Terence Newman and Terry Glenn did not participate but are all expected to start in the season opener. Terence Newman will likely feel pain throughout the season after being diagnosed with a torn plantar fascia in his right heel. Anthony Fasano is sitting out after receiving a sprained shoulder in the second preseason game. And last but certainly not least, Terry Glenn is still recovering after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery during Training Camp.

As the Cowboys prepare to travel to Minnesota for the final preseason game, we should keep a close watch on the roster. Several players will be cut tomorrow, bringing the roster number down to 75. I don’t think we will see much from the first string on Thursday because September 1st the team will be trimmed down to the standard 53-man roster. It’s always interesting and certainly unpredictable to see who will go and who will stay.  


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