Julius Crosslin - Ok, so the fullback probably won't make this team, either. But Crosslin was near the bottom of the 80-man roster when camp began, seemingly behind fullbacks Deon Anderson and Ronnie Cruz. And once Anderson and Cruz got banged up in the Denver game, Crosslin got the final two and a half quarters of work. After that, head coach Wade Phillips said, "He's showed enough where we want to see more of him." For a rookie free agent fullback on a team that only keeps one fullback, that's progress. The former Oklahoma State player has a chance to stick around on the practice squad. Who knows? Maybe the exposure he will get in Thursday's game could lead to a roster spot on another team, too.
Rodney Hannah - The tight end spent all of last year on the practice squad and his quiet demeanor often makes him rather forgettable. But Hannah has started to make some plays here in the preseason. He's got five catches for 55 yards. Sure, all of it has come in mop-up time, but he's still making plays. You have to show up somewhere. At 6-6, 258, Hannah is starting to put his basketball-frame to use. Will he make the team? Not likely. Then again, owner Jerry Jones was quoted on his pre-game radio show before Friday's game saying "four tight ends." He didn't say the Cowboys would do that, he just mentioned it as a possibility. Well, Hannah is the fourth tight end on the roster, so maybe he will be playing for more than just a practice squad spot come Thursday night.
Danny Amendola - Ok, I took some heat from the fans for not putting him onto the list in the first place. My point then was that he was so over-hyped that I didn't think it was possible he could fly under anyone's radar. And for that, he didn't. But did Amendola meet expectations and actually surpass them? Definitely. And now he's got a legitimate chance to make this team. Is he NFL-ready to play wide receiver? I'm not so sure about that. But he's in the best of the rest, and with so many injuries and uncertainties at receiver, the Cowboys are now calling on the "rest." But you can say this about Amendola, no one has out-worked him or out-hustled him since he's been here. And at 5-11, 190 pounds, undrafted and low on the depth chart, you can't ask for more than that.
So, I would've been much better off with that group of five. I even could've put rookie safety Dowayne Davis in there. He's been a surprise who will likely end up on the practice squad.
But at least these five guys are either on the fairway or close enough. At least they're in direct line with the green.
Ok, that's enough golf analogies for today. No one will confuse my last name as being Price or Faldo. Wouldn't you know, my golf references have to do with mulligans, anyway.
But after a month of training camp and three preseason games in the books, these are the five guys that surprised us more than any other. These are the five that have the best chance of coming from the lowest parts of the roster and either grabbing one of the 53 spots, or at least hanging around on the practice squad.