Cowboys Training Camp

By Jay Betsill – @thefamousjay & Scott Holub – @cowboytrivia

The Dallas Cowboys have headed out west to Oxnard, California for training camp and they are already back in the spotlight. Here are some news and notes to keep you up to date with the team.

Things are already changing for the 2012 season. Wide receiver Dez Bryant will be the
Cowboys punt returner and running back Felix Jones will return kickoffs.

“We think that’s really going to do wonders for our kicking game,” executive vice
president Stephen Jones said. “We’re going to let them work on it from the get go. Obviously, we didn’t do it with Felix last year because he was the starting running back and we didn’t do it with Dez.”

Bryant had punt returns for touchdowns of 62 and 93 yards as a rookie and averaged
14.3 yards. Jones has averaged 24.5 yards per kick return in his first three seasons.
Jones had a 98-yard touchdown in 2008.

Two-time Pro Bowl punter Mat McBriar agreed to a deal with Philadelphia on July 25. He worked out for the Eagles last Monday and the Cowboys last Tuesday but was unable
to reach a deal with the Cowboys, where he had spent his first eight seasons (2004-11).

In 2006, McBriar became the first punter to average more than 48 yards per punt since 1963. He made his first Pro Bowl that year and returned in 2010, when he averaged 47.9 yards per punt. McBriar has been recovering from surgery to remove a cyst from his knee.

Cornerback Mike Jenkins arrived at Valley Ranch for the start of the three day camp
and was immediately placed on the Physically Unable to Perform list while he continues his rehabilitation from offseason shoulder surgery. Following the additions of cornerbacks Brandon Carr (signed to a five-year $50.1 million free agent deal) and Morris Claiborne (selected with the sixth overall pick in the draft), Jenkins skipped all of the voluntary offseason program workouts but attended the mandatory June minicamp.

Joining Jenkins on the PUP list is Kevin Kowalski (Guard/Center), Mackenzy Bernadeau (Guard) and Danny Coale (Wide Receiver). If a player is on the reserve PUP list when teams cut down to the 53-man roster, then that player will miss the first six games of the current season.

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