Bernadeau and Coale will not be able to be in full pads until Tuesday because of league rules stating players must have a three-day acclimation period before full practices.
The Cowboys signed Bernadeau to a four-year deal worth $11 million as a free agent in March from Carolina with the idea of him locking down the right guard spot, but he suffered a hip injury that required surgery early in the offseason. Later he needed minor knee surgery that slowed down his progress.
Coale is coming off surgery to repair a stress fracture he suffered in May. He missed all of the organized team activities, the June mini-camp and the first week of training camp in Oxnard, Calif., but passed the conditioning test on Friday.
Bernadeau has yet to take the conditioning test, but his return would help the interior of an offensive line that has been beset by injuries. The Cowboys had newly-signed guards Derrick Dockery and Daniel Loper working with the second team offense in Saturday’s walkthrough. The Cowboys lost Bill Nagy (ankle) and Nate Livings (hamstring) early in camp and arrived in California without the services of Bernadeau and Kevin Kowalski (ankle).
Executive vice president Stephen Jones did not rule out Bernadeau seeing some time at center in camp. The plan had been to keep him only at guard, but the injuries to Nagy and Kowalski could change that. David Arkin has added center duties to his resume, but he struggled badly in Saturday’s walkthrough with shotgun snaps.
Coale’s return comes at a good time as well with the wide receiver position thinning. The Cowboys placed Cole Beasley on the reserve/left squad list and sent Saalim Hakim to Dallas to see a hand specialist for a dislocated finger. Coach Jason Garrett said the team is exploring the idea of adding a wide receiver or two.
Coale, the team’s fifth-round pick, is in the mix for the No. 3 wide receiver role, but Garrett acknowledged he will be behind.
“Disappointing for us and for him he got hurt early on in the offseason program, but he handled his rehab really well,” Garrett said. “I think it reflects in how he ran yesterday. Again, it’s a foot injury, so we’ve got to be careful putting him out there. You can have all the will you want, but if the things’ not healed to the extent it needs to be healed, we don’t want him to have a setback.”