Cowboys special teams coach Joe DeCamillis kept noticing No. 44 while he was watching film of LSU’s draft prospects.
A lot of other people are noticing Danny McCray now.
The Cowboys signed McCray as an undrafted free agent, believing he might be an impact special teams player in the NFL. He certainly passed his first test with flying colors. Now wearing Bill Bates’ old No. 40, McCray defeated double-teams as a gunner to make two tackles on punt coverage.
“He’s an athletic guy that can run real fast straight ahead, strong, hard to knock off his feet,” DeCamillis said. “He’s had a great camp and it looked like it carried over to the game.”
The 6-foot-1, 214-pound McCray, who backed up New York Giants third-round pick Chad Jones at LSU, has also surprised coaches with his performance at safety. He has picked up the scheme well and displayed good range, intercepting a pass and knocking another down during the Hall of Fame Game.
“That’s a good start for him, but we want to see it again,” Wade Phillips said. “We want to see it consistently.”
It’s long been thought that undrafted rookie Barry Church was a threat to take Pat Watkins’ job as a reserve safety/special teams demon. McCray has played his way into that mix, too.