Barry Church gets candy offer

OXNARD, Calif. -- A sweet offer caused Dallas Cowboys safety Barry Church's surgically repaired grill to break into a big smile.

Church, who was knocked out of a training camp practice earlier this week due to a root canal caused by a mishap with a Jolly Rancher hard candy, will gladly accept an offer from the PEEPS company for a season's worth assortment of marshmallow candies.

"I'll definitely take the year's supply of Peeps," Church said, laughing. "It's a good candy. I'll be able to share the wealth with everybody."

Church chipped his tooth on a cherry-flavored Jolly Rancher before the Cowboys left for Oxnard, Calif., to begin training camp. The pain became unbearable Monday, forcing him to get a root canal and opening him up to a lot of good-natured ribbing from teammates and coaches.

Peeps, in an attempt to lift Church's spirits and promote its product, sent him a letter that read, in part: "So here is our sweet offer: Since we produce everyone's favorite combination of sweet colored sugar and fluffy marshmallows, PEEPS Brand would like to provide you with a season's worth assortment of PEEPS, plenty of soft, marshmallowy goodness that will satisfy your sweet tooth and keep your dental procedures to a minimum. We will send you a wide array of flavors and shapes to carry you and your teammates through the football season."

Church, who will return to the dentist Monday to complete the root canal process, is more than willing to munch on free marshmallows.

However, Church has reconsidered his plan to quit Jolly Ranchers cold turkey.

"I'm not going to swear off them, because they're a really tasty candy," Church said. "I'm definitely probably going to have one or two of them in the future, but I'm going to try to hold back on them."