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Rob Phillips News & Blogs

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Joined by seven inductees, 2017 Pro Football Hall of Fame enshrinee Jerry Jones visited Pope Francis at the Vatican on Wednesday – making the Pro Football Hall of Fame the first American sports organization to have an audience with the Pope. Read

The Cowboys’ longtime owner/general manager made the special journey to the Vatican with Hall of Famers Chris Doleman, Franco Harris, Floyd Little, Ronnie Lott, Curtis Martin and Jim Taylor, the Pro Football Hall of Fame announced. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Before the Cowboys head west for training camp on Saturday, July 22, the rookies will get a bit of a head start. Read

With preseason starting earlier than usual with the Aug. 3 Hall of Fame Game, the Cowboys are permitted to have their rookies in for on-field work at The Star in Frisco July 19-21. The entire team, including the veterans, will fly out to Oxnard, Calif., July 22 and hold its first training camp practice two days later. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Play of the day on Minicamp Day 3: perfect pass from Dak Prescott and perfect fade route/touchdown catch by Dez Bryant. Read

To say cornerback Chidobe Awuzie got beat in coverage isn’t exactly fair. Read

The Cowboys’ second-round draft pick pressed Bryant in the corner of the end zone and was in position to make a tough deflection before the Pro Bowl receiver leaped up and snatched the ball in mid-flight. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – A smile formed on Jason Garrett’s face when asked about his longest-tenured player, tight end Jason Witten, and one of his young leaders on defense, safety Byron Jones, exchanging shoves after a play in team drills Thursday. Read

It was only minicamp practice, the Cowboys’ final team workout for five weeks until their first training camp practice that’s scheduled for July 24. But coaches always want to see their players compete – and a little jawing between Witten and Jones showed Garrett his team wants to win every single play, even in mid-June. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Cole Beasley led the Cowboys in receiving last season for the first time in his five-year career, but a lingering hamstring injury has kept him from continuing his on-field rapport with quarterback Dak Prescott in OTA’s and minicamp. Read

Beasley has sat out these offseason practices as a precaution because he’s still dealing with hamstring tendinitis that surfaced around Week 10 last season. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – The Cowboys made clear on draft weekend that Orlando Scandrick wasn’t going anywhere. They strongly refuted rumors that the veteran cornerback was on the trade block. Read

That’s good, because Scandrick doesn’t want to be anywhere else – and he’s looking forward to playing at the level he’d grown accustomed to before he tore the ACL and MCL in his right knee two Augusts ago. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones says he decided within the last week who will present him at his Pro Football Hall of Fame induction ceremony Saturday, Aug. 5 in Canton, Ohio. Read

He isn’t ready divulge the name just yet. Read

“I have decided that. It has been very well-received by everybody that I’m close to, family or otherwise,” Jones said Monday. “We’ll make a little special time for that (announcement).” Read

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FRISCO, Texas – You might say Chidobe Awuzie is getting a little of the Byron Jones treatment right now. Read

Like the Cowboys’ 2015 first-round pick did two years ago, the 2017 second-round pick is practicing at multiple spots in his first NFL offseason: outside corner, inside corner and dime linebacker, which essentially functions as a safety and allows the defense to get another cover guy on the field against multi-receiver sets. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – NFL Network will air 16 live preseason games this August – and two feature the Cowboys. Read

Monday, the NFL announced that the network will carry the Cowboys’ Aug. 12 game at the L.A. Rams and their Aug. 19 matchup with the Colts at AT&T Stadium. Read

NFL Network will show every one of the league’s 65 preseason games, including the 16 live games. Read

The Cowboys play the first of their five preseason games Thursday, Aug. 3 against the Cardinals in the Hall of Fame Game from Canton, Ohio. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Whether it’s the playoffs or pad-less June OTA practice, Sean Lee’s intensity level never, ever seems to drop. Read

Exhibit A: late in Wednesday’s team drills, wide receiver Brice Butler came down with a contested ball near the right sideline. The official at practice ruled the play a catch. Read

The Cowboys’ defensive sideline exploded in dispute. Lee led the protest, screaming that Butler had pushed off. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Dak Prescott has plenty of on-the-field goals. A significant off-the-field goal is working toward a doctorate in psychology – and he believes that process could help him become a better NFL quarterback. Read

“Yeah, obviously it’s being a doctor in psychology so it’s being able to understand people, kind of know what people take to be motivated and learning each and every personality that I can,” he said Wednesday. “So it definitely could help me out just being a leader.” Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Linebacker Mark Nzeocha had his knee scoped on Tuesday as the Cowboys finish up their final week of OTAs. Read

It’s a cleanup procedure for Nzeocha, who’s in competition for more defensive snaps entering his third NFL season. Read

The Cowboys haven’t announced a timetable for Nzeocha’s return, though arthroscopic procedures typically take a period of weeks for full recovery. Read

The club has a minicamp next week, then is scheduled to leave for training camp in Oxnard, Calif., on July 22. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – The Cowboys claimed quarterback Zac Dysert off waivers from the Arizona Cardinals on Monday. Read

To make room for Dysert on their 90-man roster, the Cowboys waived rookie free agent quarterback Austin Appleby. Read

Although Dysert has yet to take a regular-season snap, he gives Dallas another backup quarterback candidate who has spent time on a 53-man roster. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – The Cowboys officially parted ways with Tony Romo on April 4 but for financial purposes designated him a post-June 1 cut. Read

So, here in the first full week of June, Romo’s release suddenly creates $14 million in additional salary cap space as the club moves into the summer. Read

One reason for the post-June 1 designation was the ability to spread out Romo’s salary cap hit over two years. Another benefit is the Cowboys can carry over unused space into next year’s cap. Read

What might the Cowboys do with the extra room? The obvious answer is the essentials. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – DeMarcus Lawrence isn’t in much of a reflective mood these days. Read

How frustrating was last season for the Cowboys’ defensive end -- first a four-game suspension, then a troublesome back injury? Read

“That was last year,” he said. “That’s why we’ve got this year.” Read

Coming off back surgery in consecutive offseasons, Lawrence is focused on getting in the best shape possible and becoming a force in the pass rush again. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Jason Witten played 96 percent of the Cowboys’ offensive snaps a year ago at age 34. Read

He’s missed one game in 14 seasons – and he doesn’t like taking practices off, either. Read

But head coach Jason Garrett has convinced him (no easy task) that periodic rest this offseason is a good thing in the long run. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Cornerback Nolan Carroll has returned to practice this week after his arrest Monday on suspension of driving while intoxicated – an incident the Cowboys haven’t taken lightly. Read

“It’s a disappointing situation,” head coach Jason Garrett said following Wednesday’s OTA session. “There is no explanation, no excuse for putting yourself in that situation. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Tony Romo made his CBS debut over the weekend. Read

The former longtime Cowboys quarterback appeared on set with Jim Nantz and Nick Faldo for a few minutes during the network’s coverage of the Dean & Deluca Invitational golf tournament at Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth. Read

The same day the Cowboys officially released Romo on April 4, he announced his new role as CBS Sports’ lead NFL analyst this fall, partnering with Nantz and Tracy Wolfson. Read

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FRISCO, Texas – Debilitating back pain arrived quickly, suddenly, the week of Charles Tapper’s NFL preseason debut. Read

Little did he know his rookie year had ended before it started. Read

Tapper has waited nearly 10 months to move past “the worst time of my life” – what he has termed a back fracture, known as a pars defect – and get back into practice. Read

The Cowboys are ready to see what last year’s fourth-round pick can add to a competitive group of pass rushers. Read