Saturday Notes: Free Out 2-4 Weeks With MCL Sprain

"Lee Roy Jordan was standing on the sideline, he said he was pretty impressed with the precision of everything," Jones said. "For this time of year, that's pretty impressive and it says a lot about the coaching staff."

Wade Phillips said his teams in Buffalo practiced against other teams during training camps. And with the Cowboys and Broncos not facing each other in the regular season, he said these joint practices can only benefit both teams.

Position: Nose tackle
Height/Weight: 6-2, 308
Age: 23
College: Nebraska
NFL Exp: R
How Acquired: FA-'07
Hometown: Inglewood, Calif.

Fitting In: Dagunduro figures into the backup nose tackle situation, a three-man competition also involving Montavious Stanley and Remi Ayodele. A reliable backup is needed to spell veteran Jason Ferguson.
So Far: Dagunduro hasn't really done much to distance himself from the back at the nose, but then again, neither has the pack. Solid preseason games will likely decide this camp battle or if the Cowboys have to look outside for a capable backup nose tackle. Dagunduro didn't record any stats in Thursday's preseason opener against the Colts.
Best Asset: A high motor. Dagunduro was a bit undersized for a nose tackle in college, but that didn't stop him from earning All-Big XII honors as a sophomore. Dagunduro was known for his effort in pass-rushing in college and improvement as a senior last season.
You Should Know: Dagunduro's name is Nigerian, meaning "Born Across the Ocean With Wealth."
A Mouthful: "I'm ready. I feel like the old guys have shown me a lot. You've got to learn how to use your hands. I am excited to see what it feels like to be in front of thousands playing on an NFL field." -Josh Ellis

Gold Stars

While both Jones and Phillips were hesitant to point out the players who performed well in Thursday's victory, they each offered a few names.

Jones was impressed with a couple of third-teamers, tight end Tony Curtis and running back Tyson Thompson.

"I thought Curtis, it was the best I've seen him compete," Jones said of the second-year tight end who had three catches for a team-high 58 yards. "Tyson, I thought he ran hard and did some things. He's evolving in a positive way."

Phillips also had a few backup players who caught his eye, including safety Keith Davis, who had a 41-yard interception return for a touchdown.

"I think everyone saw that Matt Moore came in and did a good job for us," Phillips said of the rookie quarterback who completed 7 of 9 passes and led the Cowboys on a touchdown drive in the third quarter. "All of our quarterbacks were accurate but I thought Matt came in and did a nice job for his first NFL game. Keith Davis, obviously had a big play, and he played well overall. It's always interesting to see the backup guys and see what they did."

--Nick Eatman

New Digs

Mark down Terrell Owens as a fan of the Cowboys' off-season locker room shuffle.

Phillips randomly re-arranged the locker assignments to eliminate "cliques" among each position and create more of a family atmosphere. Tight end Jason Witten shares an east-side row with McQuistan and linebacker Bradie James. Adams and kicker Martin Gramatica are now next-door neighbors on the south side.

Owens' new locker sits at the far edge of the room leading to the showers, providing him an easy exit once his customary crammed interview sessions are over.

"I can get in and out," he joked.

Short Shots

Phillips said the team worked more on red-zone offense in Saturday's practice. The first-team offense had two impressive drives on Thursday, but had to settle for field goals both times. Phillips said he felt the offense left eight points on the board having to kick instead of scoring touchdowns . . . The temperature reading on the grass surrounding the Valley Ranch practice field was 106 degrees, a drastic change from the climate-controlled confines of the Alamodome. "It's obviously a little hotter, but it's still football," Romo said. "You've still got to be able to throw when it's cold or hot out." . . . Former Cowboys fullback Daryl Johnston will serve as an analyst for Saturday's preseason game against Denver. Johnston will join Blue Star Media's broadcast alongside Bill Jones and Mickey Spagnola.

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