Zack Martin, DeMarcus Lawrence focus of Cowboys’ rookie class

Posted Thursday, May. 29, 2014  comments  Print Reprints

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As DeMarcus Lawrence answered questions from the media, some of his fellow rookies arrived holding their cellphones, pretending to be reporters. It won’t be the last time the second-round draft pick gets the “rookie treatment.”

“It’s all nice right now,” he said.

The Dallas Cowboys rookies made their first public appearance as a group Wednesday. They joined representatives from The Cooper Institute and volunteers from United Healthcare in an NFL Play 60 Fitnessgram assembly and assessment demonstration at Pantego Christian Academy.

It marked the first time the rookies wore jerseys with their names on the back.

“It’s pretty cool,” first-round pick Zack Martin said. “It’s a surreal experience. It’s good to get out here with all these guys and be able to give back to the kids.”

The rookies arrived at the private school in the Cowboys’ two luxury buses, drawing looks, waves and honks from passersby on Park Row Drive. Welcome to the NFL.

“Getting there,” Martin said when asked if he felt like a pro yet. “I’m sure more and more it’ll feel like that. Definitely getting there.”

Martin and Lawrence, as the top two picks, have become the focus of the rookie class. Both are expected to contend for starting jobs.

The Cowboys have penciled in Martin as the starting right guard, though he has to hold off veteran Mackenzy Bernadeau. It is a position Martin has never played.

“It’s good just kind of learning how to play on the right side again and playing inside rather than tackle,” said Martin, a Notre Dame product. “It’s been going great. Coach [Bill] Callahan and Coach [Frank] Pollack have been great teaching me. It’s been a fun first two weeks.”

Lawrence expects to work into the defensive line rotation, playing the same right side spot that DeMarcus Ware played last season. He will compete with Jeremy Mincey for the starting job.

Lawrence described his game as “violent.”

“Football is a violent game, so I go in each and every day and try to be as violent as I can,” he said. “When I look at the bigger picture, the next man is always going to try to be better than you.”

Romo’s prediction

Quarterback Tony Romo says don't worry about him next season.

In fact, don't worry about the next five seasons.

And what's more Romo, 34, said he will return from his second back surgery in as many off-seasons not only as good as before but better than before.

“There’s no question in my mind, not only am I going to be able to make it through 16 games, I’ll make it through another five years,” Romo said Wednesday in a radio interview in on KRLD 105.3 The Fan.

Romo added, "I'm going to come back a better player than I've ever been."

Roster shuffle

The Cowboys waived injured rookie free agent Marvin Robinson, signing rookie free agent Tyler Patmon to replace him on the 90-player roster. Patmon, a cornerback from Oklahoma State, participated in the team’s rookie minicamp as a tryout.

Charean Williams, 817-390-7760 Twitter: @NFLCharean

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