OXNARD, Calif. –The three biggest names on the Cowboys' roster won't take part in practice Thurday, coach Jason Garrett said.
It's been common for Tony Romo to take a rest day during the course of a month-long training camp in recent years. But Garrett said that both Jason Witten and Dez Bryant will join him on the sideline – which is a far more unusual occurrence.
With the Cowboys coming off of a scheduled rest day on Wednesday, Garrett said the plan is to make the most of a chance to give his veterans some down time.
"We were off yesterday, and we have a lot of different theories about how to handle training camp and resting some of our more veteran players and some guys who are coming off injuries," he said. "One of the theories is that it's valuable to get a day off, it's life-changing when you get two days off."
Bryant has been heavily involved in practice up to this point in camp, after he was limited throughout OTAs following offseason foot surgery. It's downright remarkable to hear that Witten won't be practicing, given that the perennial Pro Bowler has only missed one game in his career and rarely – if ever – misses practice.
"He understands," Garrett said. "We talked to him before training camp about what we wanted to do and why we wanted to do it. He certainly gets it. Ultimately it's going to help him and it's going to help our team."
The Cowboys will also have some practice absences due to injury. Tyrone Crawford will once again miss practice, as he continues to deal with soreness in his back, while Terrell McClain will miss his second-straight practice with a toe problem.
Kyle Wilber will also miss practice after suffering a back injury on Tuesday evening. As noted earlier, Ezekiel Elliott is also absent while he nurses a sore hamstring.
-- David Helman