Ellis: Evaluations Can Begin With Scrimmage

A few details we know about this afternoon's blue-white scrimmage, the first in recent memory for the Cowboys:

The competition will be even. The first-team offense will play against the first-team defense, but will only thud pads, not tackle to the ground. The twos wiill play the twos and the threes will play the threes, all the backups engaging in full-contact action, tackling to the ground really for the first time this camp.

Because of the unique nature of this camp, with everything thrown together in a matter of days, it's my opinion that true judgments on the players can only begin Sunday. If asked, Jason Garrett would probably say that the coaches and scouts are always evaluating the players - they're always evaluating the players - and that's probably as it should be. Their raw athletic ability, or lack thereof, should be evident to everyone at this point, but the scouts knew that much about all the guys months ago. 

However, what happens between this afternoon and the end of the preseason should count more than the first 10 days of practices because so many of the players are new to the team. Camp to this point should be chalked up as their opportunity to learn the playbook and get acclimated to playing football again for the first time in seven months.

There will be plenty of practices in North Texas and four preseason games between now and the time to finally cut down the roster.

Mental mistakes over the first 10 days should be forgiven more than ever. They were bound to happen.

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