Penalties a focus for Jason Garrett

August, 14, 2011
8/14/11
12:46
PM ET
ARLINGTON, Texas -- Penalties have been a problem for the Cowboys whether Bill Parcells or Wade Phillips was the head coach. Only three times in the last 10 seasons have the Cowboys finished a year with fewer than 100 penalties.

Jason Garrett is doing his best to curb the issue.

He has had officials, either of the NFL variety or collegiate, at every practice the Cowboys have had in training camp.

The Cowboys had six penalties for 59 yards against Denver in the preseason opener. Three came against the defense in the first quarter with the regulars on the field. One came on the offense in the fourth quarter and two were on special teams, where you expect some penalties in the preseason because of all the younger players involved.

"We need to get better understanding the importance of minimizing penalties and also handling situations better," Garrett said during the team’s stay in San Antonio. "We typically have officials out at practice throughout the season and we thought it was good to do right from the outset."

The Cowboys were penalized 109 times last season, which was sixth most in the NFL. In the eight games with Garrett as interim head coach, the Cowboys were penalized 47 times.

Todd Archer

ESPN Dallas Cowboys reporter

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