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10 Takeaways So Far in Dallas Cowboys Training Camp

Dallas Cowboys Training Camp: 10 Takeaways So Far

Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Dallas Cowboys opened training camp with major question marks on defense, an embattled head coach and a starting quarterback with a surgically-repaired back. While the team should once again have an explosive offense, the league's worst defensive bunch from a year ago might be even worse this season. Here are 10 takeaways from the Cowboys training camp after nearly two weeks of practice.

10. Undrafted Rookie Davon Coleman Can Play

Davon Coleman Dallas Cowboys
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

10. Undrafted Rookie Davon Coleman Can Play

Davon Coleman Dallas Cowboys
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

The undersized former Arizona State defensive tackle has been a disruptive force in camp and took some snaps with the first team last Sunday. Coleman, who had 31 tackles for loss and 16 sacks in college, has consistently gotten into the backfield and has put himself in a position to possibly claim a roster spot.

9. Jerry Jones Enjoys Training Camp

Jerry Jones Dallas Cowboys
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

9. Jerry Jones Enjoys Training Camp

Jerry Jones Dallas Cowboys
Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Dallas Owner/GM Jerry Jones is hyped about the Cowboys' offense this season. The 71-year-old billionaire believes this year's offensive group can be just as good as the 2007 squad that went 13-3 and finished second in the NFL in scoring. Jones also said he enjoyed watching a brief skirmish between two players and revealed his favorite rookies at this year's camp.

8. Morris Claiborne Is Stepping Up

Morris Claiborne Dallas Cowboys
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

8. Morris Claiborne Is Stepping Up

Morris Claiborne Dallas Cowboys
Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

A sixth overall pick in the 2012 draft, the former LSU standout has netted just two interceptions and 13 pass breakups in a Cowboys' uniform. Claiborne went public with his frustrations last season about playing too much zone, and he has looked good playing the more aggressive, physical style of new defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli.

7. Brandon Weeden Is A Key Backup

Brandon Weeden Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

7. Brandon Weeden Is A Key Backup

Brandon Weeden Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

With Tony Romo not participating much at training camp, the former first-round pick with 20 NFL starts is getting plenty of work in with the first team. The odds of Romo's surgically repaired back making it through a full 16-game NFL season unscathed is not good, so Weeden has become the Cowboys' most valuable reserve player.

6. Rolando McClain Impressing Coaches

Rolando McClain Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

6. Rolando McClain Impressing Coaches

Rolando McClain Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

So far, so good. The eighth pick of the 2010 draft, who has already retired from the NFL on two different occasions, is the latest reclamation project by Jones. McClain has always been a gifted athlete, but he comes with baggage, including a pair of arrests last year. However, the 25-year-old is enjoying a good camp and might be able to contribute on a mediocre defensive unit.

5. First-Rounder Zack Martin Will Start

Zack Martin Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

5. First-Rounder Zack Martin Will Start

Zach Martin Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The 16th pick in this year's draft has been even better than advertised after setting a Notre Dame record by starting all 52 games of his college career. The 23-year-old Martin carries himself like a veteran and will make an immediate impact as a right guard.

4. Pro Bowl LT Tyron Smith Strikes Gold

Tyron Smith Dallas Cowboys
Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

4. Pro Bowl LT Tyron Smith Strikes Gold

Tyron Smith Dallas Cowboys
Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

The former USC standout was drafted ninth overall in 2011 and has developed into one of the top offensive linemen in the NFL. A prototype left tackle with both athleticism and strength, the 23-year-old signed an eight-year extension making the total value of his contract worth nearly $ 110 million.

3. Dez Bryant Is Primed For Monster Season

Dez Bryant Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

3. Dez Bryant Is Primed For Monster Season

Dez Bryant Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The ultra-talented Pro Bowl receiver has posted back-to-back seasons with 90-plus receptions, and with a contract extension on the horizon, he arrived at training camp focused and healthy. Barring an injury, the 25-year-old could pass the 100-catch plateau this upcoming season.

2. Henry Melton Regaining Pro Bowl Form

Henry Melton Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

2. Henry Melton Regaining Pro Bowl Form

Henry Melton Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The Cowboys finished with the NFL's worst defensive unit last year and besides a new coordinator, added very few impact defenders. However, the 27-year-old interior lineman who is recovering from knee surgery has shown flashes of the athleticism and talent during camp that made him a Pro Bowler two years ago.

1. Tony Romo Does Not Practice Much

Tony Romo Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

1. Tony Romo Does Not Practice Much

Tony Romo Dallas Cowboys
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Protecting the surgically repaired back of their prized signal-caller has Romo enjoying a very light training camp schedule. The three-time Pro Bowler is coming off of two back surgeries and has practiced just five times over the first 10 days of camp.


Marvin Moore is a Texas Rangers writer at RantSports. Follow him on Twitter at @SportsMarvin, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your circles on Google.