OXNARD, Calif. – The decision to waive Kyle Orton wasn't exactly hard-hitting news as the Cowboys opened training camp on Tuesday with a state-of-the-union press conference.
But it was the first time both Jerry Jones and Jason Garrett had discussed the decision to part ways the backup quarterback had not participated in any of the offseason work.
While some of the reasons came down to money, which the Cowboys saved about $1 million on the cap by cutting Orton when they did, Jones said another factor came down to Brandon Weeden.
The former first-round pick of the Browns in 2012 who was available this offseason, got nearly all of the first-team reps with Tony Romo rehabbing his back injury and Orton sitting out.
Weeden's play has seemingly given the Cowboys enough confidence to assume he will continue to improve and be the backup to Romo for this season.
"We liked what we saw from Weeden in his absence," Jones said on Tuesday. "That was pretty good stuff. Does he have a lot to do to be where let's say Kyle Orton might have been starting against San Francisco? Yes, he's got a lot of work to do and we know that. On the other hand, he does a lot of good things as well."
Jones said the fact Weeden took advantage of his opportunity is a good example for the rest of the team heading into camp.
"It's kind of a mantra for what's going to go on out here during training camp," Jones said. "You need to be out there, you need to be on the field, you need to be doing your best every play or somebody else can step up there. That was all alive and well in this decision. But it's important to understand we were paying Kyle a lot of money and that money can go toward paying a pretty good football player that can help us win in our judgment more than having that much invested in his position at backup quarterback."