Practice Recap: Carr Could Be Back Soon, But Focused On Sept. 13 Opener

OXNARD, Calif. – Last December, DeMarco Murray played against the Colts six days after having surgery for a broken hand.

Cornerback Brandon Carr is having surgery Monday for a similar hand fracture sustained in Thursday's practice. The good news, though, is the Cowboys' first regular-season game is 36 days away. 

"Fortunately we have some more time than he (Murray) did as far as just getting ready for the next game," Carr said after Saturday's practice. "We have a few weeks before the home opener. That's just my focus right now – taking care of business on Monday and just going day by day to see how it feels."

Carr attended Saturday's practice in full uniform with tape over his injured hand. His timetable following surgery is uncertain – at the very least, he's expected to miss next week's preseason opener at San Diego.

Head coach Jason Garrett didn't rule out Carr possibly returning before training camp ends. Carr didn't try to predict a timeline, either – he concurred that the team will monitor his progress day by day following surgery – but he indicated the primary focus is the Sept. 13 season opener against the Giants.

"I've been in the league eight years. I kind of have a feel for what it takes to get myself prepared for games," Carr said. "It just comes down to being confident in your ability on the field on Sundays. If you miss some preseason games for the greater good of the team or for myself, then that's what it takes for me to get ready for the regular season."

Quick Hits

While Sunday's Blue-White Scrimmage usually gives the Cowboys their first taste of real football, there was some live goal-line action on Saturday that sent emotions on both sides of the ball. However, it was the offense that dominated the drills, even with the first three running backs sitting out. But behind the first-team line, Gus Johnson scored touchdowns on the first two runs against the first-team defense. The offense actually scored on five of the first six plays, with fullback Tyler Clutts catching one from Tony Romo. Lache Seastrunk scored twice running with the second-team offense.

Oscar award winning actor Denzel Washington attended Saturday's practice along with his son, John David Washington, who stars in the HBO series, "Ballers." Washington said he was a "Cowboy fan my whole life" and mentioned players such as Duane Thomas, Calvin Hill, Tony Dorsett and Walt Garrison. Washington talked to the team in the middle of the field before practice and got to meet up with several players, including Tony Romo and Jason Witten.

Defensive line coach Leon Lett missed Saturday's practice to attend Charles Haley's Hall of Fame induction in Canton, Ohio. Lett, who played from 1991-2000 with the Cowboys, was a teammate of Haley for five seasons on the defensive line.

Cowboys owner Jerry Jones, who had hip surgery last month, did not attend Haley's event, but the club was represented by his daughter, Charlotte Jones Anderson, the team's Executive Vice President and Chief Brand Officer. 

Notable Standouts

Gus Johnson –With Joe Randle sitting out of the full-contact drills on the goal line, many of the first-team reps fell to the rookie tryout player. It's fair to say Johnson moved the pile, as he looked impressive in scoring multiple touchdowns. The highlight of his day came when he carried off right tackle on the goal line, shaking off Damien Wilson and bulldozing J.J. Wilcox to get into the end zone.

Darrion Weems –Doug Free took a veteran's day to rest his foot, so Weems got to work as the Cowboys' first-team right tackle. In the goal line period, Weems worked with Zack Martin to make a formidable right side for the running backs. Johnson scored twice running off right tackle, and Lache Seastrunk added another running behind him. It was an encouraging sign, as Weems continues to work toward securing the swing tackle spot.

Tyler Clutts –Yet another standout from the goal line period came from the offense. Clutts threw several big blocks, opening up running lanes for Johnson and Seastrunk. He also caught one of just two receiving touchdowns in the goal line session, hauling in a swing pass from Tony Romo on a play action pass.

Play of The Day

The offensive beat the defense decisively in the goal line session, and it carried over into the team period that immediately followed. On the first play of the period, Randle took a handoff to the right side and followed blocks from Clutts and Patmon into open space. It was a fantastic bit of blocking, with Travis Frederick moving into the second level to shut out Anthony Hitchens. Randle wasn't touched by a defender until J.J. Wilcox caught him 20 yards downfield.

Where the play got really memorable was once Wilcox and Kyle Wilber reached Randle and hauled him to the ground. Clutts took issue with the level of physicality, and it turned into a shoving match. Predictably, the scuffle grew to include more players – including several from the sidelines. No punches were thrown, but it was a telling indicator of the intensity of practice.

Transactions:

Aug. 8 – Signed guard Cody Clay

Aug. 8 – Waived LB Will Smith

Aug. 4 – Signed TE Brandon Barden.

Aug. 4 – Released TE Ray Hamilton.

Aug. 3 – Signed LB Ka'Lial Glaud, LB Jonathan Brown

Injury Report:

Missed Practice:

WR Dez Bryant (ankle)

CB Orlando Scandrick (knee)

CB Brandon Carr (hand)

DE Kenneth Boatright (neck)

OT Doug Free (rest)

RB Lance Dunbar (ankle)

DT Terrell McClain (bone bruise/hamstring)

RB Darren McFadden (hamstring)

OL Chaz Green (hip)

LB Mark Nzeocha (knee)

LB Rolando McClain (knee)

Returned to Practice:

WR Devin Street (ankle)

Upcoming Schedule:

Sunday, August 9

TBD                                         Coach Garrett press conference
2:30 p.m. (PDT)                   Dallas Cowboys Blue/White Scrimmage

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