FRISCO, Texas –That moment has finally arrived. Not only for many of the Cowboys rookies and first-year players, but for the entire organization as well.
Football is back – sort of – as the new faces conduct their first practice at The Star as the team begins a three-day minicamp.
While all eyes are fixed on first-round pick Taco Charlton, many of his new teammates found themselves in the spotlight as well, meeting with the Dallas media for the first time.
Here are some highlights of Friday's locker room session with the rookies and first-year vets, including tight end Rico Gathers and safety Jamiell Showers.
- Jourdan Lewis on coming to the Cowboys with Michigan teammate Taco Charlton:
Lewis: It's a great transition knowing you have a familiar face coming from the same program. I'm pretty sure he'll make my job a lot easier. I'm excited to play here with him.
- Taco Charlton on his first official practice day with the Cowboys:
Charlton: It's a great feeling. It's about to be the first time to put the helmet on and get a chance to earn the star. It's a great feeling to go out there and get a chance to work with a lot of other rookies and then next we get a chance to work with the vets. It's a humbling experience, definitely.
- Rico Gathers on starting to feel like a football player in his second year:
Gathers: Mindset wise, even when I go play (basketball) in those little church leagues and stuff like that, I feel like a football player out there. Mindset wise, I'm just focused on trying to better myself and do everything I need to do to get myself ready.
- Safety Jameill Showers on his eating and workout habits now that he's moved from quarterback to defense:
Showers: I'm trying to really work my shoulders and things like that. But weight-wise, I'm trying to get down. I was 230 as a quarterback and they want me around 215. I'm just trying to get my diet right. It's not the best thing in the world. I can't eat like a quarterback anymore.
- DT Joey Ivie, on expectations for the weekend:
Ivie: My expectations are to get my butt kicked, honestly. I know we all have it coming, all of us D-Linemen. They've been kind of hinting it towards us. We went through a walkthrough of what we're going to do today. It's going to be a heavy load, but it's nothing we can't handle. It's about being mentally tough and making it through without showing mental weakness.
- DT Joey Ivie, on wearing Bob Lilly's number:
Ivie: Actually a lot of people have talked to me about it. My Dad told me, too. He said 'You know that's Bob Lilly's number?' That's crazy. It's an honor to even wear this number. He was such a great player and definitely a guy I would say I look up to. It's cool to be able to wear this number.
- DT Jordan Carrell, on being with his college teammate Chidobe Awuzie:
Carrell: The first bus ride, I was walking in the bus and I seen Chido, and we both had a smile on our face. We just shook hands, and we're just blessed to be in this position. It does help having somebody that you grinded with these past two years going through the same things, to be able to live this experience the same.
- CB Jourdan Lewis, on the opportunity w/ this depth chart:
Lewis: A tremendous one. I've got to go out there and prove myself. There's still some guys that's on the team that have been here and have proven themselves and have competed. I still have to prove myself out there on the field. It starts today.
- Safety Xavier Woods on the disappointment of being drafted in the sixth round:
Woods: I'm here now. It's all that matters. I'm here now. I'm ready to work.
- Wide receiver Ryan Switzer landing with the Dallas Cowboys in the fourth round:
Switzer: It's the perfect spot for me. I landed with the best organization in football. I'm extremely fortunate to be here and be a part of this team. There's such a rich, winning tradition here. I know the guys pride themselves on having a great locker room and great chemistry. I'm really fortunate to be in this position.
- Wide receiver Noah Brown on the surreal moment of walking into The Star in Frisco:
Brown: I had that moment when I pulled up to the facility. It's a different ballgame. That moment, you have to take it in, but you have to hit the ground running. I try to get over that and start running.