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8/01/2005

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Parcells Guys Editorial

Three Days In, Two Tight Ends Out and One Lineman Down

As the 2005 Dallas Cowboys were lining up for their first training camp practice there was one familiar face was not on the field. Hall of Fame Offensive Lineman Larry Allen “failed” the physical fitness “test” given to all the players on the squad.

That is what we were told, but maybe we should sort through the headline and make some sense of this mess. As part of the conditioning test Larry was to run sprints, 50 yards down and back, stop for two minutes and repeat, stop for two minutes and repeat, totaling 900 yards. To pass the test he had to complete each segment in less than 56 seconds.

Larry seemed to think this was not really a test you had to pass so he quit and didn’t finish running the sprints. I guess there are no incompletes in the NFL. There are no make up tests either, Coach Parcells placed the big guy on the PUP list and said there would be no re-test in the future. Hmmm. This is a weird one if you ask me. The explanation was that since the NFL doesn’t want anymore “Korey Stringer” incidents the Cowboys were being overly cautious with Allen and that he would be back on the field in no time.

There was Allen back on the field Monday at the late afternoon practice. He was dominating and looked ready for the season opener from what I hear. So I am still asking myself, What the heck was all that “poor conditioning” stuff about?

Here’s my guess. Larry thought he was “Larry Allen” and didn’t need to do all that running stuff. Coach Parcells sees this and says “oh no you don’t”. Think of the young players on this roster coming into a 6 win team from a year ago and they see one of the veteran leaders bowing out on the first set of workouts. Coach Parcells sent a message to the team and to the world by “benching” Allen for a few days. Now the rookies know that no bull**** will be tolerated no matter what number you wear or how many Pro Bowls you have attended in the past.

Good job Coach Parcells. As always I think you did the right thing for the good of the Dallas Cowboys. Plus you got one of your Parcells’ Guys, Stephen Peterman, some good work with the first team offense.

Dan Campbell is out for a week or so after having his appendix out. What a wimp, just kidding. This guy is a big part of the offense so let’s hope missing a few days doesn’t have any lasting negative effects. Then if having one TE down wasn’t bad enough the Cowboys lose third string TE Sean Ryan to a broken foot. Dang it! Now there is some concern because as Coach Parcells said this situation could have a domino effect if the team doesn’t handle this properly. Well if it’s up to me I clone Jason Witten and make him the 1st, 2nd and 3rd TE for a few weeks. Get well guys and get back on the field when you can make a solid contribution to the offense. What else can we ask for?

Now let’s talk about some news and notes.

Justin Berry-O has had garnered some talk about the things he is doing out there so far. This is good, but he’s doing it playing the Strong Safety spot. That job belongs to Roy Williams already. If he continues to make some plays maybe the coaches will decide to get him some Free Safety work. Then if we keep hearing great things I will get excited about him making the 53 man roster.

Drew Henson threw 6 million passes this off-season and so far he looks like it. About three of four people have written about him under throwing receivers with flat passes. Maybe his arm is tired? Ya think so! Get him some rest before his arm falls off.

Julius Jones is the man in Dallas and will be the man in the NFL before December ‘05.

Ditto for Drew Bledsoe, Jason Witten, Terry Glenn and Keyshawn Johnson.

Ware, Spears and Burnett are signed and on the field. Coach them up and let them attack, attack and attack some more. These guys could become a powerful trio before their days in Dallas are complete. Ware is faster than a speeding bullet, Spears if stronger than a raging bull and Burnett is tougher than a Redwood. Ok, maybe they aren’t ready to be Super Heroes, but they better be ready to play some kick ass defense.

Glover and Ellis are practicing playing defense. Enough said.

There has been a Jacob Rogers sighting. He is now entrenched in the battle for the Right Tackle opening with Torrin Tucker and Kurt Vollers. My money is still on Vollers until Coach Parcells says other wise. Why? Sometimes having no mistakes made is better than having a guy play great 95% of the time, and then he makes one mistake that leads to the team losing the game and a QB.

Closing note. Coach Parcells is not enjoying this and that is a great sign for all of us Cowboy’s fans. He seemed a little too happy last training camp about the state of the team. That dang 2003 season set us all up for failure in 2004. Now we should use that 2004 season to set us up for success in 2005. Simple math, but it just might work.

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