OXNARD, Calif. -- The day we've all been waiting for arrived Sunday, when the Cowboys opened up training camp practices.
Every day we'll give you a preview on the festivities.
Who will practice? Tony Romo, who underwent offseason surgery to remove a cyst from his back, has been cleared to practice. Romo missed offseason workouts while recovering, but was working out in Southern California prior to the team's arrival for the start of training camp. The Cowboys, however, will not have a complete 90-man roster practice on Sunday. Nate Livings (foot), Ronald Leary (calf) and L.P. Ladouceur will miss Sunday's session with what the team is describing as minor injuries. Several other players (DeMarcus Ware, Danny Coale and a few others) could be limited in their work the first couple of practices.
Jones' 25th: Jerry Jones, 71, will have his 25th training camp as owner of the Cowboys. His first camp was in 1989 in Thousand Oaks, Calif., just east of Oxnard, where the team now holds camp. Jones is noted for saying some pretty interesting things during his training camp opening news conference. Saturday afternoon was no different. Jones said coach Jason Garrett's job isn't tied to making the playoffs. The comment surprised some in the media and maybe some fans.
What's new? The Cowboys have a new defensive coordinator (Monte Kiffin), offensive playcaller (Bill Callahan), defensive scheme (4-3 from a 3-4), outside linebacker (Justin Durant), starting center (Travis Frederick) and safety (Will Allen). Off the field, the Cowboys have two trucks, one positioned at the far end of the field and another near the main entrance, that will sell team merchandise. Autograph seekers 12 and under will be positioned closest to the players as they walk off the field near one of the end zones next to the entrance. If you're an adult wanting an autograph, you better get to the practice fields early and find a good spot along the fence near the sidelines.
The left guard is Livings and Leary are at the top of the depth chart but with each out due to injuries, who takes over? David Arkin should see time at this spot. This is an opportunity for Arkin to establish himself as someone to keep for the 53-man roster. Arkin is on the bubble, so every snap he gets with the first team will be valuable to him.
Practice times: As we said, get here early. There is a 3 p.m. PT rally with the practice to start at 4 p.m. It should last until nearly 6 p.m. It's the first of 18 practices, but only 17 are open to the public. The practice on Aug. 14 is closed. From Sunday through Aug. 16, when they break camp, the Cowboys will have four off days.