(Editor's Note: 90 players are striving for a roster spot over the next month. In an effort to keep up with all of them, Bryan Broaddus is going to write a report on three different players after every practice. From the team's most prominent players to its no-name camp bodies, this is a place to read about what's going on across the Cowboys' roster.)
OXNARD, Calif. – I'm leaving to head back to Dallas this afternoon. But one more time before I go here's three guys who stood out to me during the Cowboys' last practice.
Travis Frederick C
He continues to be one of the most consistent players on this squad -- regardless of position. It's rare that he has a poor practice or consecutive reps. He is often put in difficult situations, scheme-wise, and handles them without fail. One of the very few centers in the league that can reach a wide defensive tackle or nose without ending up on the ground. He plays with tremendous body control and balance and often is finishing plays on his feet. This scheme requires him to often play in space, which is no problem. I'm starting to see him more on pulls along with Zack Martin to lead plays around the edge. One of the main reasons that we have seen more screens being run in practice due to his ability to get outside, locate his man and execute the block. When he does have difficulty -- it will usually take place when he doesn't get his hands inside on the defender. There have been some snaps in these practices where Cedric Thornton has broken him down because he didn't allow Frederick to work his hands and he was able to get pressure from it.
Dak Prescott QB
As good as Dak Prescott was against the Los Angeles Rams last Saturday night, there are still going to be those days where he is not as good. I didn't think his practice on Tuesday was particularly sharp. He struggled with his accuracy and the touch on the ball. When he is poor, this is usually the case. There were several passes he threw -- especially the closer the offense got to the end zone -- where his footwork appeared off and the ball was too flat, giving the defender an opportunity to make a play on it. There were some passes during the team period on some inside routes where, once the ball left his hand, you knew that it had no chance of making the target. His best throw of the day was one he didn't even connect on. Andy Jones didn't help him on a route in the back of the end zone that would have been a score if Jones would have just stopped and settled. Prescott threw the ball where it needed to be, so at least the mental side of his game is progressing.
Maliek Collins DT
We are finally starting to see some work from Maliek Collins. He was able to jump in several different drills and team periods during practice on Tuesday in hopes of getting him ready for these next few preseason games. If there is anyone that needs to play, it's Collins. He is trying to work himself into that rotation with Tyrone Crawford, Terrell McClain and Cedric Thornton. Early indications are that the coaching staff wants to see him play as the under-tackle or three-technique. During his snaps in practice, I thought he played a little high coming off the ball -- which made him easier to control. He didn't have the initial quickness that you'd like to see as well, but that's to be expected with him just returning back to practice. He looked powerful going through the bags, so the strength is not an issue but it was clear that there was some technique rust from not playing since last college season.