SAN ANTONIO -- This is the first of many Cowboys practice reports from the Alamodome.
The Cowboys on Thursday conducted their first series of practices with a walkthrough, which started late because the players had to vote to recertify as a union.
The second practice had several draft picks invovled, including first-round pick tackle Tyron Smith.
Numerous players are released:It shouldn't come as a surprise that several veterans were cut by the Cowboys on Thursday, the first day NFL teams could cut players. Marion Barber, Troy Bergeron, Robert Brewster, Travis Bright, Kris Brown, Marc Colombo, Leonard Davis, Kelvin Smith and Roy Williams were sent home. Bergeron failed his physical, and coach Jason Garrett said when that happens you will be released.
Injury report:Center Andre Gurode was placed on the Physically Unable to Perform list Thursday because he's recovering from minor knee surgery. Garrett said he wasn't sure how long Gurode would remain on the list. Whenever the Cowboys get their two remaining draft picks signed, the PUP list might be in their future as well. Second-round pick linebacker Bruce Carter is recovering from knee surgery but hasn't been seen by team doctors to determine his status. Also, third-round pick running back DeMarco Murray has a hamstring issue, so he too could miss some practice time. Safety Akwasi Owusu-Ansah hurt a calf toward the end of the afternoon session.
Williams with rough day:Teddy Williams was signed last year without a position, if you will. The Cowboys had him at cornerback, then moved him to wide receiver. Well, this training camp he's at wideout, and he had four dropped passes Thursday. Williams is fast -- his track background tells us this -- but to make the practice squad this go around, he needs to catch the ball and become a reliable receiver.
The kicking battle is on:David Buehler and undrafted rookie Dan Bailey went head-to-head on field goal tries in the second practice. Buehler went 3-for-4, missing from 35 yards when he went wide right. Cowboys special teams coordinator Joe DeCamillis sent a rusher at Buehler that might have thrown him off. Bailey, from Oklahoma State, was 4-for-4, but his 35-yarder hit the left upright and went in when a rusher flew at him. Buehler should have the edge here, but he misses from inside the 40 too much. Buehler went 4-for-7 on field goal tries between 30-39 yards last season and missed three field goals in the 40-yard range.
Quick thoughts:With no Marion Barber on the roster, it allows Felix Jones to become the starting running back and he did a nice job running the ball with the team in shells. Jones hit the holes smoothly and showed a quick burst. He did drop a screen pass for his only mistake of the day. ... The big problem with fullback Chris Gronkowski is holding blocks. Bradie James almost pushed Gronkowski back into Jones on a carry. ... Until Doug Free and Kyle Kosier are allowed to practice, here is the first-team offensive line: LT Tyron Smith, LG David Arkin, C Phil Costa, RG Montrae Holland and RT Sam Young.