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Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Is Stephen McGee in trouble?

By Calvin Watkins

OXNARD, Calif. -- The Cowboys have quite a few good special teams players who might force the team to go heavy at certain positions such as safety, linebacker and wide receiver.

If that happens, the Cowboys might go short at another spot. Like quarterback.

In 2008, the Cowboys played with just two quarterbacks, Tony Romo and Brad Johnson. But after Johnson struggled when he replaced an injured Romo, the Cowboys upgraded the spot by trading for Jon Kitna in 2009.

The Cowboys also drafted Texas A&M's Stephen McGee in the fourth round. Last season, McGee was inactive the entire season as the third quarterback recovered from a sprained MCL in his right knee suffered in a preseason game.

This year, the Cowboys want to see what McGee is all about. Sometimes in practices against the first- and second-team defenses, it seems as if he's running for his life. It seems hard to judge McGee when he has to move around the pocket all the time.

Offensive coordinator Jason Garrett said you can judge McGee on his decisions: Does McGee throw the ball away? How quick does he feel the pressure? Can he throw on the run?

In the two preseason games, McGee has completed 48.3 percent of his passes. He's thrown more passes than any of the quarterbacks (29) and he's been sacked more (four times). His quarterback rating is 60.6.

We're not saying McGee needs to get cut, but the next three games are important for him.

"We’ve gone with two quarterbacks and we’ve gone with three quarterbacks," coach Wade Phillips said. "So it’s whoever you think your best players are going to be."

When asked if McGee needs to do a little more, Phillips said: "I'm not singling out McGee. We're not going in that direction. We're just saying we try to keep our best players."