At some point the Cowboys will honor Tony Romo, but it might have to wait until the quarterback officially decides to retire. Or at least go through his first season with CBS. But they have honored him in an indirect way so far. Nobody is wearing No. 9 on the current roster and unless they had a quarterback with an affinity for the number, it could be a while before they choose to give out the number. Nobody wears No. 12 because of Roger Staubach. Nobody wears No. 8 because of Troy Aikman. Inside The Star, the Cowboys have yet to move a player into Romo’s old locker, either. That could change. Coach Jason Garrett has put team leaders at different corners of the locker room, but Romo’s spot remains vacant.
Ryan Switzer’s positive showing during the first organized team activity could lead to a runaway train of possibilities, with the fourth-round pick working one slot and Cole Beasley, who led the Cowboys in receptions last year, working the other. The Patriots use Julian Edelman and Danny Amendola together, but Edelman has become an accomplished outside receiver as well. Plus, the Cowboys aren’t taking Jason Witten off the field.
Offensive coordinator Scott Linehan agreed it would be difficult to get Beasley and Switzer on the field together on a full-time basis, “but that’s not really the idea,” he said.
“I think the idea is we’ll have our packages. We have a lot of multiple packages of different types of receivers or running backs that are in the game. When we’re playing those kinds of teams where we think it gives us an advantage, certainly I’d think we’d use that. Right now [Switzer] is learning the whole gamut, the whole offense and starting from ground zero, and we’ll move to that other stuff when the time comes.”
Ronald Leary was overlooked on the Cowboys' offensive line because he played next to Tyron Smith, Travis Frederick and Zack Martin. Anybody would be overlooked, but the Denver Broncos signed him to a four-year, $35 million deal.With that type of financial commitment comes a lot of responsibility, especially as a leader. Leary is trying to bring the attitude of the Cowboys’ line to Denver.
“I just try to lead by example,” Leary said earlier in the offseason. “I talk a little bit, but I just like to work hard and try to do everything to the best of my ability. I think they see that -- they already had it. It’s not like that this O-line was just missing. Everybody just needs to be pushed more and just work harder and that’s what we’re trying to do as a group. It’s not an individual thing. It’s always as a group on everything with the O-line. We’re just going to try to get that mentality that we’re physical, that we don’t take anything from anybody. I think once we develop that in the offseason, it will carry over to the season.”
The Cowboys will not practice against another team this summer. They have worked against the Rams, Oakland Raiders and Chargers in recent years, but the Hall of Fame Game all but eliminates the chance of working against another team. While the work can be beneficial because it increases the tempo of practice, Garrett was stung a couple of years ago when the practices against the Rams devolved into huge fracas after huge fracas. It was a mess.
The Cowboys will hold part of training camp this summer at The Star, but they aren’t ready to give up on California. They signed a two-year extension with the city of Oxnard, California, to continue to hold parts of training camp there. There is also a two-year option on the deal. Even as the Rams and Chargers look to make Los Angeles their home, the Cowboys will have a spot in Southern California over the summers. Perhaps there will be some practices against one or the other in the future.
Will AT&T Stadium ever get a Super Bowl again? With rains pushing back the opening of Los Angeles’ newest stadium to 2020, Super Bowl LV in 2021 will be played at Raymond James Stadium. Super Bowl LVI will be played in the $2.6 billion facility in Inglewood, California. AT&T Stadium hosted Super Bowl XLV in 2011 after it completed its second season as the Cowboys’ home. The seating fiasco might be playing a part. The weather was awful. Remember the ice storm? And then there’s the Texas bathroom bill proposal. After the Super Bowl was played at Houston’s NRG Stadium in February, the NFL put out a statement saying, “If a proposal that is discriminatory or inconsistent with our values were to become law there, that would certainly be a factor considered when thinking about awarding future events.” So, it might be some time before a Super Bowl returns to Arlington, Texas.