- Calvin Watkins, ESPN Staff Writer
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During this portion of the offseason you normally see head coaches visit various colleges and universities checking out prospective draft picks at pro days.
Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett isn't one of them.
Since taking over as head coach in 2011, Garrett has attended just two pro days, one at USC where the team eventually drafted tackle Tyron Smith and at Alabama. The Cowboys didn't draft anyone from Alabama despite Garrett's close relationship with coach Nick Saban.
Garrett would rather have the personnel department, which also includes the scouts, and assistant coaches attend pro days.
"We want to do a really good job of the whole spectrum of players that are available to us," said Garrett, who did not attend Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel's workout on Thursday. "We have scouts and personnel people at the pro Days. We do individual workouts not only with the top flight guys but with guys who we think might be drafted in the middle to late rounds and see if there's a place for them. So much of this is trying to get to know a player and they're a lot of different ways to do that."
Garrett said he visited Smith's pro day, with then offensive line coach Hudson Houck, because he wanted to personally know the player. At Alabama, Garrett worked for Saban when he was the head coach with the Miami Dolphins so there's a trust level between the coaches that Garrett likes.
"If we feel like we don't have a lot of information on a player, maybe a player that we're interested in, I might go spend some time with him, either in a workout format or an interview process at his pro day," Garrett said. "With Tyron, it worked out very well. He was a guy we really liked, we didn't know much about him, he hadn't worked out, he was a junior and all of those things. So we felt like it was worthwhile for me to go and he's been a good player for us."