OXNARD, Calif. - New offensive coordinator and offensive line coach Bill Callahan seems to be watching a new lineman gingerly walk off the field every day at training camp.
Callahan, who spent the last four seasons as the Jets' offensive line coach and assistant head coach, is in his first season with the Cowboys after taking over offensive line duties from 13-year Cowboys veteran Hudson Houck.
Callahan discussed the intensity in the Cowboys' first practice in pads Wednesday, while watching Nate Livings and Jermey Parnell head to the sidelines with injuries.
What did you see from the first practice in pads Wednesday?
Callahan: "I was really pleased with the practice. I thought the guys gave great effort. I thought we ran the ball effectively. The tempo was crisp. You could hear the pads pop. From that perspective, everybody gave a great effort for the first day being in pads."
What's the injury situation like on the offensive line?
Callahan: "We got a couple guys early in camp with Mackenzy [Bernadeau] and also Kevin Kowalski, those two fellas are down on PUP. So we started shorthanded to begin. You look at the injury to Bill Nagy the other day, and Nate's going to be fine, we'll know a little bit later."
How hard is it to have to continually switch new offensive linemen in and out?
Callahan: "You're in a position where you're trying to build your chemistry up front, your communication. We've got smart guys, tough guys. They'll be back on the rebound."
How much has the system changed with your arrival, and how are players adjusting?
Callahan: "Generally speaking, everybody has the same plays and concepts. It's how you present them and how you drill them and how you prepare them to be executed in the team drills is what really matters. These guys have grasped the system, I thought, pretty well, for the volume of install that we've put in. They've done a nice job. We've still got a long way to go, though."
David Arkin has played both guard positions and center. It seems like he's taking almost every snap.
Callahan: "It happens in every camp. You're going to have a guy that's going to get a lot of reps. When you're down especially where we're at inside, its good, its great experience. It's a bad thing in one sense but a good thing in another. You're getting a player who's getting more exposure, more opportunities, he's getting to communicate more and play different positions."