FRISCO, Texas – It's a small step, but an important one.
As the Cowboys kick off their offseason program, Travis Frederick is on hand and taking part in workouts.
"It's just great to have him working out again. Last year, I think it was well-documented, he did a great job of being kind of another coach," said Zack Martin. "But to see him back out there working out, you can definitely see a little bounce in his step."
That alone isn't exactly big news. Frederick has been working out with his teammates for a healthy portion of this offseason. But with Monday marking the first time the Cowboys were together as a full team, it's worth noting one of their biggest leaders was on hand.
It's also noteworthy given what he's been through since last August. Frederick missed the entirety of the 2018 season with Guillain-Barré Syndrome, an autoimmune disease that attack the nervous system. Frederick was diagnosed with the illness during training camp and was placed on injured reserve at midseason.
As Martin mentioned, the All-Pro center was a steady presence around his teammates throughout last season. But having Frederick in the meeting room and having him in the huddle are two different things.
"As much as he helped us last year, I know it was tough not being out there, just kind of doing the daily grind with all the guys that makes us so close," Martin said. "It's awesome having him back, and we're excited to get him back out on the field."
Obviously, there's still work to do for the four-time Pro Bowler. This early phase of the offseason program is all about conditioning. The on-field work doesn't begin until OTAs start in late May – and even that is a far cry from the grind of training camp.
But at the outset of the offseason program, it's at least encouraging that Frederick appears to be right on track.