- Todd Archer, ESPN Staff Writer
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OXNARD, Calif. -- The NFL is mandating players wear full pads to play in games this season. Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett is mandating the Cowboys wear them in practice.
At his opening team meeting of training camp on Saturday, Garrett told the players to get with the equipment staff and find the right kind of pads for practices and games or they will not practice.
“You’ve got to be able to carry your pads to be a good football player,” Garrett said. “If you go out in shorts or in these pads that you’re not going to wear in the game and then, come game time, you’re wearing something different than what you’ve been practicing in, that’s not good for you. You want to feel comfortable. You want to feel like you’ve been there before, so we’ll do that in practice as well.”
Linebacker Sean Lee did not wear thigh or knee pads in his first three seasons. Most of the skill players on both sides of the ball did not wear all of their pads for fear of being slowed down even a little.
“I think at first it’ll be an adjustment, but I don’t think it’s too big of a deal,” Lee said. “It’ll be good because you can practice in them and feel good.”