OXNARD, Calif. – The pads came on for Day 3 of Cowboys training camp and the physicality was noticed immediately.
While there were a number of big hits, S Barry Church had the most notable when he dropped WR Dez Bryant on a bubble screen. Church was able to slice his way through some blockers to hit Bryant just as the receiver caught the ball and dropped him to the ground with a thud. It was Church’s best play of camp so far. Church offered Bryant a hand after the hit to help him off the ground.
In one-on-one drills, LB Ernie Sims popped TE Colin Cochart with a semi-blindside hit. Cochart got up but appeared to be somewhat confused at being hit that way by a teammate. After a nice gain by RB Phillip Tanner, S J.J. Wilcox sent him to the ground in the secondary. Tanner got up and completed his sprint.
It was not a good day for rookie CB B.W. Webb. He was hearing it all day from secondary coach Jerome Henderson. After pulling up while covering WR Eric Rogers on a slant, Henderson told Webb to get off the field. After he allowed a catch to WR Terrance Williams in the slot, he got yelled at by Henderson for not rallying to make the tackle.
LB Sean Lee did a nice job of breaking up a seam throw to WR Miles Austin a good 35 yards down the field. Lee reached up at the last second to make the play, but Austin could have made the contested catch. On the next play, CB Morris Claiborne made a nice twisting breakup of a sideline throw to WR Anthony Armstrong.
With TE James Hanna sitting out with a hamstring injury, rookie Gavin Escobar got his most work of camp. He came up with a nice catch in front of Church on a drag route and followed that up with a catch in the flat on the next play.
It was a rough start to practice for the offense in the afternoon walkthrough. They had to run the first scripted play three times before they got it right and had to re-huddle three snaps later. For the defense, their first two full-team snaps resulted in offsides penalties to Ben Bass and Ware. The first team was yanked both times in favor of the second team for a play.
Players were a little testy with the officials on hand for practice. Bryant was looking for a hold on CB Sterling Moore as he attempted to get down field for a Romo throw. Ware was looking for a hold on Jason Witten on a running play.
K Dan Bailey missed a kick, which was almost earth-shattering. His 41-yarder from the right hash was just wide to the right. He made his other five kicks from 35, 40, 43, 40 and 37 yards. He is now 10 of 11 in camp.