Brandon Carr didn’t suggest putting it in a “3-inch headline” as former Cowboys coach Jimmy Johnson once did. But Carr wrote his headline Sunday night when he said he and the Cowboys are ready to “take over the league.”
“That’s going to be your headline,” Carr said knowingly.
To that end, Carr has lost 10 pounds and boasts that he is in the best shape of his life.
“I’m trying to take over the league,” Carr said while attending the team’s 10th annual Taste of the NFL to tackle childhood hunger. “I get emotional when I say that because I’m dead serious, man. I’ve been playing this game for six years now, and I’m just ready to make that jump and become that shutdown corner.”
Carr has played in two systems in his two seasons since signing a five-year, $50.1 million free-agent deal that made him one of the richest corners in the league. He and the Cowboys struggled mightily last season.
Dallas allowed the third-most yards in NFL history, and Carr gave up the third-most catches in the NFL (62) as well as 966 yards and three touchdowns, according to STATS, Inc.
With a new defensive coordinator in Rod Marinelli, Carr expects the scheme to allow the team’s corners to do what they do best. They hope to play more man coverage this season.
“That’s the plan,” Carr said. “As this thing gets on a run, we’ll see how it shakes out, but we just want to be in a position to win ballgames. We felt like we disappointed ourselves last year. We’ve got a big chip on our shoulders. But last year is the past, and it’s time for us to clean the slate and get ready to play this year.”
Crawford now a DT
Tyrone Crawford didn’t get a chance to show the Cowboys much of anything last year. He tore his Achilles on the first day of training camp.
This year, Crawford hopes to show that he can be a defensive tackle.
The Cowboys have moved the third-year veteran to the 3-technique, hoping he and Henry Melton can provide a good one-two punch at the most important position in the Tampa Two scheme.
“I just want to get him in a position where he can really showcase what he can do,” Cowboys defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli said. “That position either you showcase or you don’t. If he can’t do that, then yeah, he’s a good left end, too.
“He’s solid, really good at left end. But you always have to have at least two of those guys [at the three-technique]. You have to. It’s a hard position to play. If you’ve got a guy who can come in and rotate with a guy in there, boy, it’s tough, and in third downs, if you find a nickel inside rusher. ... I think he’s got a lot of that.”
Marinelli said Crawford has gotten bigger and stronger. The Cowboys listed him at 284 pounds last year. The Bears listed Melton at 295 last year.
Big week for Romo
The Cowboys begin organized team activities next week, and they are hoping Tony Romo’s back is well enough to allow him to participate in some of the team drills. The quarterback likely won’t do much in individual drills.
But this week is important in Romo’s rehab from the herniated disk surgery he had in December.
“We’ll see how he does this week and hopefully he can do something [at the OTAs],” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said Sunday night. “He’s done a little bit of stuff, and then he’s kind of backed off, and then done a little bit more and backed off. So we’ve just got to kind of evaluate how his workouts go this week.
“Obviously, we’d love to get him out there for everything, but we’re going to be smart, too. We recognize it’s the third week of May, and what we’re trying to do is get him ready to play in the regular season. So I think you want to be aggressive with it, but you also want to be smart with it.”