Dallas Cowboys: Morris Clairborne

Minicamp observations: B.W. Webb shines

June, 12, 2013
IRVING, Texas – With two more days of minicamp action still to come from Valley Ranch, let’s take a quick look at come observations from Day 1:

  • Since Morris Claiborne was out with a migraine, rookie CB B.W. Webb worked with the first-team nickel package. He came up with a sack and was able to stick with WR Anthony Armstrong on a go-route in seven-on-seven drills.

  • Nate Livings missed practice with a sore knee, so Ronald Leary took all of the left guard snaps with the first team. Don’t be surprised if Leary is in that mix with Livings early in training camp.

  • Practices are supposed to be noncontact, but LB Brandon Magee isn’t shying away from contact. The undrafted rookie knows he has to make an impression. He knocked down TE Andre Smith in an OTA practice and wiped out RB Kendial Lawrence near the sideline Tuesday.

  • WR Cole Beasley was beaten badly while blocking in the slot on a running play in which his defender made the tackle. That’s one of the cons of having the undersized Beasley on the field a lot.

  • LB Sean Lee was able to meet RB DeMarco Murray in the hole after C Travis Frederick was slow to get to the second level. But maybe it was less about Frederick being slow and more about Lee diagnosing the play quickly.

  • TE Jason Witten had another excellent practice, with his best catch coming down the middle of the field as he made space between safeties Matt Johnson and Barry Church by arcing his route some to give QB Kyle Orton more room.

  • CB Sterling Moore had good back-to-back plays, first breaking up a Nick Stephens throw to Eric Rogers and then intercepting a Stephens throw to Armstrong. In two-minute work, however, he tempted Dez Bryant close to the line and was beaten badly on a slant that eventually led to a winning field goal by Dan Bailey.

  • It was a good day for the interior defensive linemen in terms of getting pressure. Jay Ratliff participated in more team drills than he has this offseason and was difficult to block, as was Jason Hatcher. Even Sean Lissemore came up with a would-be sack.

  • Orton’s best throw came on a deep ball in seven-on-seven drills when he perfectly led Bryant, who got past Brandon Carr. But later Orton was off on an in-cut to Bryant and forced a throw into double coverage when Bryant was bracketed by Justin Durant and Orlando Scandrick.
  • Cowboys news and notes

    April, 29, 2012
    PM ET

    IRVING, Texas -- The NFL draft is finally over and with that we've got some leftover items from what happened over the last three days.

    *Yes the Cowboys are shopping cornerback Mike Jenkins for a trade, but there appear to be no takers. A couple of big problems for Jenkins. While the front office has praised Jenkins, there appears to be some concern about his participation in the offseason program. It's voluntary, but when you're coming off shoulder surgery it would be nice if the medical staff saw you regularly. Jenkins is working out in Florida, and his conditioning is never a question, but working out at Valley Ranch would benefit him.

    *You've seen the rest of the Cowboys draft and some of you don't like the picks. Look at it this way. Say the Cowboys hadn't made the deal for Morris Claiborne. The first-round pick would have been defensive lineman Michael Brockers from LSU and the second-round pick would have been, ready, hold on to your seats .... Utah State inside linebacker Bobby Wagner. He went to Seattle at 47 overall. Claiborne vs. Wagner/Brockers: Which is better?

    *Seventh-round pick Caleb McSurdy got a visit from running backs coach Skip Peete and worked out at fullback. The Cowboys want McSurdy to play linebacker and special teams for now but down the line maybe McSurdy can move to fullback. The Cowboys have failed to develop a fullback the last few years. Shaun Chapas, a seventh-round pick last year, couldn't play it consistently.

    *At the start of the fourth round, the Cowboys targeted outside linebacker Kyle Wilber and strong safety Matt Johnson. Both were acquired, Wilber at 113 overall and Johnson at 135 overall. "We targeted Wilber and Johnson as guys we wanted," team executive vice president Stephen Jones said. "And to get them both was a very pleasant surprise because those were the two when we started [the round] we had the one-two in terms of hoping one of them might be there for that first fourth-round pick and then to turn around and get them both was a good situation for us." Wilber is a strongside pass rusher with tremendous upside. Johnson has 17 career interceptions in college. He makes plays on the ball and can play center field and in the box.

    *The Cowboys spent their first four picks on defensive players before selecting wide receiver Danny Coale from Virginia Tech. Team owner/general manager Jerry Jones said a defensive player was considered for the fifth-round pick as well. But Coale, a slot receiver, was taken instead. The Cowboys were not alone in thinking about improving their defenses through the draft. New England and Green Bay used their first six draft picks on defensive players. It was the first time two teams did that since 2002 when Tennessee and Indianapolis did it.

    Bobby Wagner would have been drafted

    April, 27, 2012
    PM ET
    IRVING, Texas -- Dallas Cowboys owner/general manager Jerry Jones said the Cowboys would have used a second-round pick on Utah State inside linebacker Bobby Wagner.

    The Cowboys didn't have a second rounder because they sent it to the St. Louis Rams as part of a trade to acquire the sixth overall selection, which they used on LSU cornerback Morris Clairborne.

    Wagner, 6-0, 241 pounds, went to Seattle as the 47th overall pick of the draft.

    It's interesting the Cowboys would have looked at an inside linebacker given they already have Sean Lee, Bruce Carter and Dan Connor at the position.

    Carter saw limited action last season because he was recovering from knee surgery. Lee led the team in tackles with 105 and Connor was a free-agent pickup this spring.

    But the Cowboys have preached creating competition at several positions and Tom Ciskowski, the assistant director of player personnel, said he had no problem with the Cowboys adding players at certain spots as long as it made the team better.

    In the third round, the Cowboys selected Tyrone Crawford, a defensive end from Boise State, who was at the top of their board for that particular round.

    "A guy we really feel like has some upside who can do some different things for us," coach Jason Garrett said of Crawford. "We feel like he can grow into a [defensive end] and we also feel he can be a pass rusher on third-down situations."