- Todd Archer, ESPN Staff Writer
- 0 Shares
Most times these kinds of fights need a week or so to begin.
Perhaps tight ends coach Mike Pope has a solution so cooler heads can prevail.
After practice Pope had his tight ends put their heads in a bucket full of ice water for five seconds and attempt to catch a pass with water coming down their face.
"Oh, gosh, that one was an all-timer right there," tight end Jason Witten said. "I felt like my 2-year-old coming out of the water in the swimming pool. But it's different ways to get you to concentrate and focus on catching a football. You play tight end, most of the time you have contested catches … . He does all those drills so we can make those tough catches. He's been around a long time. Some of them we kind of look at each other, 'Wow, we really doing this?' Today was one of those."
On to the observations:
Tony Romo was much sharper in his second day of work in full pads, completing 15 of 19 passes. He was intercepted once when Brandon Carr ripped a pass away from Bryant with Romo under pressure from a blitz. Later, however, Romo had a Romo-moment, slipping away from the defensive pressure and finding Devin Street, who broke deep away from Orlando Scandrick as Romo sprung free from the pocket.
On Saturday Romo and Bryant hooked up on only one of four deep passes. On Sunday, they were much more efficient. Romo hit Bryant on two crossing routes and two stop routes with the best play coming with Carr draped all over him. Romo was able to sneak a pass over Carr's shoulder on an out route for a first down.
After two days the defense is much more aggressive in its calls. They have brought more blitzes with linebackers up the middle and corners off the slot than they did perhaps in all of camp last year. It's led to some raggedy moments for the offense, but they have had some big plays.
First-round pick Byron Jones had an interesting day. On three straight plays he lined at three different spots. He lined up over the tight end in the dime defense with the first team, took a free-safety snap with the second team and moved out to corner for the third snap. That's some versatility.
Terrance Williams had a tough two-play stretch in the final team period of practice, dropping a slant and then committing a false start penalty. He spent the rest of the practice attempting to keep Bryant away from Patmon.
Lost amid the Bryant-Patmon fight was the catch Cole Beasley made for a big gain to close out the first-team work. That came one snap after Witten beat the defense down the seam for a big gain.
Rookie wide receiver Lucky Whitehead knows he has to do a little of everything to make the team. In special team drills he went right from returning a punt to serving as the gunner, sprinting at least 50 yards on both occasions. He looked to catch his breath quickly before a coach told him he didn't have any time for that.
For the second straight day Davon Coleman was noticeable for all the right reasons. He had at least two tackles for loss.
Players are off on Monday. The Cowboys are likely to work out some linebackers in their search for more depth.