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Training Camp | 2021

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Practice Points: Defense Shines in Final Day in Pads


OXNARD, Calif. – The Cowboys completed their final padded practice of training camp on Wednesday. The team will have a light walk-through on Thursday before departing for Arizona.

But for the final time, in front of an energetic crowd, the Cowboys had another productive practice that showed some balanced competition between the offense and defense.

The final play of the day was made by the defense when linebacker Keanu Neal stepped in front of a pass in the two-minute drill to end the rep, the day, and the overall practice with pads.

Here are some other notes of interest from Wednesday:

  • In Red-Zone 1-on-1 drills, the length of the cornerbacks came into play, especially for rookie Nahshon Wright. The third-round pick, who looks like a wide receiver, was able to get his hands on the ball on several fade routes in the corner. He knocked the ball away from Reggie Davis twice and also battled with CeeDee Lamb, who couldn't come up with the play.
  • Deante Burton, is a physical corner who also had a nice drill, able to shut down the receivers at the line of scrimmage. Burton has moved from safety to corner in his career and has the size to overpower smaller receivers.
  • Not to be outdone, Lamb made sure he came up with another amazing catch on the last practice day. He went over Anthony Brown in the left corner to not haul in the pass, but his backside came down in bounds for yet another touchdown camp. Needless to say, no one had a better camp than Lamb.
  • Randy Gregory said the final practice was "sluggish" for the defense and himself included. But overall, Gregory was certainly one of the most productive players and looks to be on pace for a good season in 2021.
  • Malik Hooker practiced for the first time in full pads and went through some individual drills. But he was held out of team drills and went back to the rehab station on the other field.
  • Rookie fullback Nick Ralston got his most extensive work of camp, getting both carries out of the backfield and some catches out of the backfield. The Cowboys were using fullback Sewo Olonilua before his neck injury that will likely keep him out for an extended period of time.

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