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Mid-Day Report: Backup Tackles To Get More Work Today


OXNARD, Calif. – Head coach Jason Garrett held his daily press conference Tuesday between the walkthrough and afternoon practice, discussing a variety of topics, from the current injury situation to the announcement of the future team headquarters in Frisco.

Here are some notes from his conference:

  • Garrett anticipates tackles Demetress Bell and Jermey Parnell practicing more today and taking the next step in a limited role. They'll likely be held out of 1-on-1 competitions still, but they'll be more involved in team drills. Parnell injured his hamstring early in camp, while Bell hasn't practiced fully since joining the team in July as he works to get in shape.
  • Having limitations at the tackle spot can be a problem, which Garrett acknowledged. He said Bell was overweight and out of shape, but he thought the tackle was still worth bringing in and getting in shape to see if he can help out at the position.
  • "You just need tackles," Garrett said. "You need linemen. Oftentimes, those guys will get nicked up and before you know it you're playing with a third or fourth guy."
  • Garrett said it's exciting that the Cowboys will make the move to Frisco in the future, and though he wasn't directly involved in the discussions, it sounds like a great deal for all parties involved. He also said he can feel the history in Valley Ranch and embraces it. He has great memories of Valley Ranch, which the team will still use the next few years, and said it holds up well, but he's also excited to see the new facilities.
  • In college, new weight rooms and facilities can be a major recruiting tool. Garrett said that's less the case in the NFL, but it is important to have up-to-date facilities.
  • Ernie Sims, Sean Lissemore and Eric Frampton all got hurt early Sunday and are still day to day or week-to-week, according to Garrett, who believes Frampton's injury will probably keep him out the longest of the group. Sims and Lissemore both hurt their groins, while Frampton hurt his hamstring.

Garrett said Sims has made a lot of plays since Organized Team Activities began and is always around the football. "Ever since we saw Ernie the middle of last season when we signed him, we could tell he has the right mindset and approach," he said.

  • When people look at the defensive switch to the 4-3, most people first consider whether or not the linemen can handle it. Garrett said the linebackers also play a huge role in that switch and make a significant impact on the front seven. In particular, he thought Bruce Carter would be the perfect fit at Will linebacker.
  • One of the best players at that spot in Monte Kiffin's defense was Derrick Brooks, a player Garrett considers a sure Hall of Fame talent. Garrett didn't want to compare Carter to Brooks, but he said they do have some similar traits.
  • Dez Bryant is always a consideration on special teams, but the Cowboys will try to limit that and keep it in their back pocket. "He'll get a little bit of work," Garrett said. "We don't anticipate him being our primary returner."
  • Garrett said Baylor coach Art Briles did well describing the work ethic of Terrance Williams before the draft, and the Cowboys have seen that before and after Williams' return from injury. Cole Beasley and Dwayne Harris have an advantage by knowing the system, but Garrett said there's no question in his mind Williams will become a good football player. [embedded_ad]
  • Mike linebacker is Brandon Magee's natural position, but the Cowboys are also working him in at the Will spot. Magee was a player the Cowboys targeted immediately after the draft because of his playmaking ability in college, and Garrett said he needs to play a couple different spots if he's not going to be a starter.
  • Garrett complimented quarterback Alex Tanney's instinctive traits and willingness to learn the playbook after signing with the team later than the other quarterbacks. Garrett said they haven't figured out playing time for this coming back, but he wants to give every player a chance.
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