Camp observations: D wins the day
August, 11, 2012
By Todd Archer | ESPNDallas.com
AP Photo/James D SmithAfter watching the Cowboys practice, actor Ashton Kutcher chatted with Tony Romo.
OXNARD, Calif. – Ashton Kutcher rolled into Cowboys training camp Saturday, and there’s no truth to the rumor that owner and general manager asked the "Two and a Half Men" star if he could play center … or wide receiver.
Kutcher, however, did spend a good time looking at the offensive and defensive line play before turning his attention to the skill players.
On to the observations from a Saturday practice that featured some game-plan work for Oakland:
** Lots of double moves and deep balls in one-on-one drills between quarterbacks and wide receivers. Now the defenders are at a distinct disadvantage in this drill, but WR Dez Bryant had the highlights before a hamstring strain ended his day. He beat CB Brandon Carr on a double move to the middle of the field (where a safety would have been in position) and outmuscled CB Morris Claiborne on a back shoulder fade.
** Carr got his revenge later when he broke up an out route to Bryant from Tony Romo.
** Two things you haven’t seen much of in camp: a Cole Beasley drop and an Akwasi Owusu-Ansah interception. They happened on back-to-back snaps in one-on-one drills.
** Bruce Carter is getting the edge in the inside linebacker chase with Dan Connor in part because of his athleticism. He was able to stick with RB Felix Jones on an arrow route underneath and break up a pass in one-on-ones.
** CB Orlando Scandrick jammed WR Raymond Radway so well off the line that the wideout just stopped on his route and took his helmet off in disgust. It was the beginning of a long day for Radway, who had a miscommunication with QB Kyle Orton that led to an interception and a drop.
** As good as Bryant has been in camp, he still doesn’t always go where he is supposed to go. After running the wrong route, Romo lit into him pretty good after he would have been sacked by OLB DeMarcus Ware, who had two sacks and a pressure Saturday.
** LB Orie Lemon struggled a few days ago in pass coverage but rebounded nicely Saturday, reacting quickly to screens to TE Jason Witten and RB Jamize Olawale. Lemon could force his way on the roster, but it will come down to his special teams work. He worked as the personal protector Saturday on punts.
** LG Derrick Dockery and RG Mackenzy Bernadeau had false starts on the first play of team drills and were replaced by undrafted rookies Ronald Leary and Harland Gunn. Three plays later, LT Tyron Smith jumped early but the play went on as called.
** Claiborne made a nice break on a Romo pass to WR Kevin Ogletree in the end zone, stopping a potential touchdown. The coaches were excited to see the rookie No. 1 pick make a play in a big situation.
** Bernadeau did a nice job in space on LB Sean Lee on two screens, delivering a good blow on the move. For a big guy, he moves pretty well. He’s had a pretty good start to his camp.
** The defense would have scored a TKO for its work against the offense for much of the day, but during the two-minute drill the No. 1 unit rebounded. Romo completed 8-of-9 passes and ended the drive with a TD pass to Witten on a shallow out route as S Barry Church chased.