Camp Notes: Irvin's Day Trickles Down to Camp

"I'm happy that I'm here," Burnett said. "But football is a game you can never be satisfied. My great granddad always told me to be greedy. So I'm greedy. I want it all."

A seventh-round pick from Illinois, Ball has been rather impressive here at training camp and had started to distinguish himself as one of the favorites to earn one of the final cornerback roster spots.

Position: Running Back Height/Weight: 6-2, 235
Age: 24
College: Houston
NFL Exp: R
How Acquired: FA-'07
Hometown: Humble, Tex.

Fitting In: Battle is competing with Tyson Thompson for the third running back spot behind Julius Jones and Marion Barber. Like all rookies, the coaches are waiting to see how Battle does in the preseason games before making a full evaluation.
So Far: Battle impressed the coaching staff with his fearless running, but it's unlikely he'll unseat Thompson for the third running back spot. He needs to show a knack for making plays on special teams.
Best Asset: Power. Battle is a battering ram best running north and south, straight at defenders rather than around them.
You Should Know: Battle was tackled behind the line of scrimmage only six times out of 441 carries at Houston.
A Mouthful: "I think I have to show that I am reliable." - Battle after being asked what he as an individual needs to show the coaches. -Jennifer Smoak

Grinding It Out

Cowboys players were singing the same tune Saturday - training camp has hit the grind time. It's the part of camp where the newness has worn off and everyone is ready to start hitting someone in a different jersey.

Wide receiver Terrell Owens agreed with one reporter's analogy that practices in the Alamodome can be like the movie "Groundhog Day," with little or no changing day to day. He said it will be nice to be back in Dallas and get out in the fresh air some more.

"And maybe even sneeze," he said to laughs.

Safety Roy Williams put it even more bluntly.

"I'm just ready to go home," he said.

Coach Wade Phillips said he can tell the players are starting to get tired of hitting each other, but that this is the time to reinforce basics that the coaching staff won't have time to go over once the games start.

Not So Soft?

While there has been a perception that new head coach Wade Phillips is running an easier training camp than the previous seasons, quarterback Tony Romo not only squashed that notion, but revealed a recent incident that certainly got his attention.

Romo said Phillips made an example of two players who were late to a special teams meeting Saturday morning.

"He made them stand up in front of the team and hold themselves accountable to the rest of us," Romo said. "I thought that was a pretty good thing. The last thing you want to do is let down your teammates.

"They won't do it again. I bet if they did it again, he'll probably cut the guy. Wade is not going to sit there and yell and berate at you and make you feel like a kid. But what he will do is be a football coach and treat you like a man. And if you don't do the same, then he'll just get rid of you."

So who were the two players?

"Oh, I don't remember," Romo said with a smile.

-Nick Eatman

Curb Your Enthusiasm

Among the new rule changes and alterations for the 2007 season is a rule limiting taunting. In other words, players will only be able to celebrate good plays in certain ways.

Players are no longer allowed to spike the ball in celebration because the league considers it a form of taunting and a delay of game while the referees retrieve the football. The only time celebratory spiking is allowed is in a touchdown celebration. Players will still be able to spin the ball on the ground.

The new rule, along with last year's touchdown celebration cutbacks (no props, no lying on the ground, no teammates involved), has been viewed as targeting the more flamboyant players in the league such as Joe Horn, Chad Johnson, and Terrell Owens. Owens probably had the most memorable touchdown celebration last year, deftly dropping the ball into The Salvation Army Red Kettle in the Thanksgiving game.

But Owens said the new celebration rule is the furthest thing from his mind at this point.

"Right now, I'm just trying to improve, working on practicing hard, doing whatever I can to help this team win," Owens said. "As far as touchdown celebrations, that's not even on my radar right now."

-Zach Buchanan

Future Stars

Saturday morning's press conference moved from its normal spot in the corridors of the Alamodome to a tent out on the front plaza. A crowd of fans watched on as coach Wade Phillips took his normal questions and participated in a special announcement.

Ford Motor Company, Scholastic Coach & Athletic Director magazine and the Dallas Cowboys are teaming up again for the Second Annual "Built Ford Tough/Dallas Cowboys Texas High School Football Player of the Week" award. Coaches, players and fans can nominate any player who they deem worthy of the award that week. A panel will review the nominations and pick a winner for each classification weekly.

Phillips, who coached and played high school football in the state of Texas, will serve as the 2007 spokesperson for the award.

Short Shots

Phillips said the coaching staff hasn't finalized the personnel for the preseason opener against the Colts on Aug. 9. The coach said he has "some idea" but wants to get a better feel for his team's injury situation . . . Phillips did say he will play all of his players who are deemed 100 percent, stating he isn't a big believer in holding selected players back strictly because it's the preseason . . . The Cowboys had 21,494 fans attend the two practices on Saturday, including 12,271 in the afternoon session, the second-largest attendance of the camp. The Cowboys have had 138,534 fans so far during training camp.

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