Dez Bryant is back.
Bryant made a spectacular one-handed catch over cornerback Orlando Scandrick in team drills on Thursday, easily the play of the day and maybe the play of camp. Bryant leaped and snagged with ball with his left-hand for a touchdown on a fade route from Dak Prescott.
Bryant then jokingly tossed the ball back to Scandrick, who batted it away. Scandrick acknowledged it was simply a great catch by Bryant, and had no issues with his celebration of tossing the ball back.
As Scandrick said, “If I would’ve intercepted it, I was going to punt that.”
On to more observations:
1. Bryant wasn’t the only receiver to get the best of Scandrick. Terrance Williams beat him down the sideline in a ‘compete’ drill in front of the team. Said Scandrick: “Man, I gave up two plays today that I haven’t given up all camp, so I got to fix it.” Outside of those two plays, though, Scandrick has had an impressive camp. He looks healthy and feels he’s poised for a big year. “Let’s just say I’m back and I’m ready to compete,” he said.
2. Had it not been for Bryant’s terrific catch, undrafted rookie receiver Brian Brown may have been the talk of the day. Brown had a spectacular catch in his own right, coming down with a deep ball from Kellen Moore. Brown had just enough position on cornerback Leon McFadden to catch the ball and get his feet down inbounds.
3. The offense almost swept the compete period. Along with Williams beating Scandrick, Cole Beasley got the best of Duke Thomas; Darren McFadden won against Damien Wilson; Geoff Swaim got by Xavier Woods; and Bryant had little trouble against McFadden. The lone win? Byron Jones defending a pass attempt to tight end Jason Witten. Witten ran an out route and couldn’t come down with a ball a little high from Prescott, and Jones in tight coverage.
4. Chaz Green practiced in teams drills for the first time Thursday since being sidelined with a shoulder injury. Green worked at left tackle with the second team. Emmett Cleary got the reps at left tackle with the first-team as Tyron Smith continues to deal with back tightness. Green has battled injuries since the Cowboys took him in the third round of the 2015 draft. But he’s got the talent and ability to play at this level. Said Jason Garrett: “It’s good to see him back out there. He missed a couple days here, so just good to see him getting some practice reps.”
5. Kicker Dan Bailey is perfect no more. He missed his first field goal attempt of training camp on Thursday. Bailey had a 53-yard kick sail wide right. Bailey is now 32-for-33 in camp. But Bailey did make a 55-yard field goal in situational work, a more impressive kick considering it was into a slight breeze.
QUOTE OF THE DAY
“Scandrick has been ballin’. He’s a true leader. He’s making me work hard. ... Scandrick is gonna have a big year this year.” — Receiver Dez Bryant on cornerback Orlando Scandrick
DT Cedric Thornton (hamstring): Day-to-day
LB Sean Lee (hamstring): Day-to-day
CB Chidobe Awuzie (ankle): Day-to-day
TE James Hanna (groin): Day-to-day
LT Tyron Smith (back): Day-to-day
WR Brice Butler (foot): Day-to-day
CB Marquez White (hamstring): Day-to-day
DE Tyrone Crawford (ankle): Undetermined
CB Anthony Brown (hamstring): Day-to-day
CB Jourdan Lewis (hamstring): Day-to-day
OL Joe Looney (toe): Day-to-day
LB Justin Durant (Non-football injury): Day-to-day