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Tweet Break: Dallas Cowboys Preparing for Training Camp

Sean Martin

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Cowboys Headlines - Tweet Break: Dallas Cowboys Preparing for Training Camp

Welcome back to Tweet Break here on Inside The Star. Football is so very, very close to coming back - so I'm going to assume you know the drill by now. Cowboys fans, media members, and players alike spend the week tweeting things that you need to see, and I put them all together for you every Friday.

Sound good, Cowboys Nation? Come on in!


I know I already mentioned how close we are to seeing the Cowboys back on the field, but training camp is just two weeks away! In our first section of tweets, let's take a look at what some players are doing with their few remaining off days prior to traveling to Oxnard.

Ezekiel Elliott on Twitter

Fun times with @DudePerfect @MikeEvans13_ @Mathieu_Era https://t.co/QFPOzWEtJn https://t.co/QFPOzWEtJn

Parisa Michelle on Twitter

Way 2 rock the red carpet @TonyRomo. Wishing ur best yr yet in 2016-17! Thank u 4 being u. #Undrafted @dallascowboys

Jaylon Smith on Twitter

I will be back better than ever !!!#ClearEyeView #GoCowboys #AmericasTeam

Rookies Ezekiel Elliott and Jaylon Smith are entering the Cowboys' 2016 season with entirely opposite expectations. While Elliott is expected to contend for the rookie of the year award, Smith will simply be focused on making progress towards his return to the field from his knee injury suffered at Notre Dame.

Here, you see Elliott enjoying himself before hitting the field again for training camp, while Smith continues to show a high amount of humbly-expressed excitement for his future with the team that drafted him with the 34th overall pick.

Meanwhile, Tony Romo is looking his best as we anxiously await for him to trade in that outfit for his #9 jersey and get back on the field. Romo's wife, Candice, also found a way into this week's Tweet Break.

Rich Eisen Show on Twitter

Hilarity ensued at Crawford household when @tonyromo came to take @chacecrawford's sister out for their 1st date.

Candice's brother, Chase Crawford, stopped by the Rich Eisen Show to share a must-listen story about Romo taking Candice on their first date.

~~~

https://twitter.com/kinggatz2/status/753017896155119617

Rico Gathers might be the least talked about rookie in the National Football League. The final selection by the Cowboys in the 2016 Draft, Gathers is trying to transition from a Baylor University basketball player to a member of America's Team.

While he was drafted as a tight end, Gathers shared with the world here his off season work with David Robinson - who is listed on Twitter as the home of the "world's #1 WR Academy Skills Training".

It will be fascinating to see if Gathers, who was known for his rebounding ability as a college basketball player, can transition into a pass catcher for the Dallas offense this summer.

~~~

Ryan Keith Russell on Twitter

There are always gonna be more opportunities to fail then to succeed. Succeed anyway.

Another player that could really turn some heads this season is defensive end Ryan Russell, who could greatly help this defense with a big year-two jump at defensive end.

Russell can back up his tweets about hard work and success with some great OTA and mini camp work under his belt, with the next step being throwing the pads on and working in the heat against Tyron Smith, Doug Free, and Chaz Green every day.

~~~

That will conclude another fun edition of Tweet Break here on Inside The Star. Until next week, I'll leave you with one more tweet that I simply couldn't turn my eyes away from - even if it is from a video game.

EA SPORTS Madden NFL on Twitter

Special teams will be more important than ever in #Madden17. https://t.co/M7Be5w3eHM https://t.co/6xMrA6kQJz

Look somewhat familiar?

Sean Martin ✭ on Twitter

@rjochoa @CowboysNation you were right, it was McCray https://t.co/f3JikRGxok

Be sure to follow Inside The Star on Twitter @CowboysNation!

Tell us what you think about "Tweet Break: Dallas Cowboys Preparing for Training Camp" in the comments below. You can also email me at Sean.Martin@InsideTheStar.com, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!



Born January 28th, 1996- Cowboys Super Bowl XXX. Point Boro Panther, Montclair State Red Hawk, and most importantly a proud member of Cowboys Nation! I host "Upon Further Review" on 90.3 WMSC FM and wmscradio.com every Friday from 1-4 PM ET. Twitter: @SeanMartinNFL.

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Leighton Vander Esch Is A Stud, And Should Be For A Long Time

Kevin Brady

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Leighton Vander Esch Is A Stud, And Should Be For A Long Time

The Cowboys took their fair share of heat for selecting linebacker Leighton Vander Esch 19th overall in the 2018 NFL Draft. But through just over half a season, Dallas is looking vindicated in their decision.

Vander Esch was arguably the best defensive player on the field during Dallas' 27-20 win in Philadelphia Sunday night, and made the two biggest defensive plays of the game as well. Finishing with a game-high 13 tackles, Vander Esch was all over the field in both run and pass defense.

The first of his two massive plays came in the first quarter. After the Cowboys offense stalled deep in their own territory, the Eagles looked to be in prime position to strike first with a short field. On Carson Wentz' first pass attempt of the drive, however, Leighton Vander Esch was there to intercept him and return the ball back 28 yards.

Those return yards proved key as well, giving the Cowboys the short field and an easy path to their first three points of the night. And with the way their offense looked early in this game, Dallas could use all the help they could get.

The biggest play of the game, though, came late in the fourth quarter. With the Eagles facing a third and short and down seven points, they absolutely needed a conversion to keep pace with the surprisingly hot Cowboys offense. Philadelphia tried to beat Dallas with a running back screen to the backside, inviting the pass rush and getting blockers out in front.

There seemed to be nothing but blockers and green grass ahead for the Eagles on this play, with "Next Gen Stats" expecting a 22 yard gain after the catch. Then, Leighton Vander Esch eluded two blockers and tracked down the running back for a loss of 3.

Next Gen Stats on Twitter

Leighton Vander Esch made a game-saving tackle late in the 4th quarter to preserve the Cowboys 27-20 win. Corey Clement was expected to gain 22 yards after the catch (gained 3), -19 YAC Below Expectation, the most yards saved on a pass play this season. #DALvsPHI #DallasCowboys https://t.co/0DF7jhPQzH

If not for this tackle, who knows how both that Eagles' drive and the game would have ended. Vander Esch saved the day for Dallas, and forced the Eagles into a tough fourth and long situation with the game on the line.

I know it is still early in Vander Esch's career, and even relatively early in this season as well, but it's become clear the Cowboys hit a home run with their 2018 first round selection. Vander Esch is fitting in beside Jaylon Smith with ease, and with those two athletic freaks together, the Cowboys look to have one of the brightest defensive futures in all of football.

Of course, there are now legitimate questions about what the Cowboys should do with their captain Sean Lee. But as of right now, it should be Leighton Vander Esch's job to lose.



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Can Cowboys LB Vander Esch Do Enough to Win DROY?

Mauricio Rodriguez

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LB Leighton Vander Esch Rare Bright Spot In Cowboys Disappointing Loss

At 3-5, there are very few positive things to point out when discussing the 2018 Dallas Cowboys. One of those few things has been first-round rookie Leighton Vander Esch, whose play at linebacker has taken the league by surprise. Seen as a raw talent who could develop into an elite player with time as a prospect, Vander Esch's impact on the field has been immediate.

Through nine weeks in the NFL season, the Boise State product should definitely be in the Defensive Rookie of the Year discussion. As much as Sean Lee's injury will hurt the Cowboys' defense, it will get the rookie more playing time and a big opportunity to put his name in the minds of NFL Honors voters.

Sean Lee will miss some time after re-injuring his hamstring for the second time this season. Earlier in the year, Jaylon Smith and Vander Esch were able to keep the defense from crumbling without their veteran captain. Even with all the offensive struggles, that should continue to be the case for the linebackers.

Vander Esch has only played in 65% of the Cowboys' defensive snaps, yet he's tied for ninth place in solo tackles in the entire league with 49. He's at 64 total tackles and two pass deflections and has been a magnet to opposing ball carriers every time he's been on the field.

He's the third highest graded rookie LB for Pro Football Focus. Most times, rookies find success like this by being rotational players or simply splitting snaps with other players. But as previously mentioned, Lee has already been out for a handful of games in 2018 and Vander Esch has lived up to the hype.

Simply put, Leighton's play as a rookie has already put Sean Lee's future on the Cowboys in question. With such an injury history and a two young studs ready to take over the reigns, Dallas could very well release Lee prior to the 2019 season.

Now granted, the race for Defensive Rookie of the Year will not be an easy one to win for Vander Esch. Fourth overall pick Denzel Ward has been an impressive cornerback for the Browns and fifth-overall pick Bradley Chubb has been one of the best pass rushers on Sundays. Not to mention the NFL leader in solo tackles, Colts' LB Darius Leonard.

Despite a great start to his season, the Cowboys young LB will have to play way better for his name to be called when the Defensive Rookie of the Year is revealed at the NFL Honors event in February. There are some pretty big names he has to catch up with in order to make this happen.

Tell me what you think about "Can Cowboys LB Vander Esch Do Enough to Win DROY?" in the comments below, or tweet me @MauNFL and let’s talk football! If you like football and are looking for a Dallas Cowboys show in Spanish, don’t miss my weekly Facebook Live! show, Primero Cowboys!



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Star Blog

Dak Prescott/Carson Wentz Is No Rivalry, And There’s Only One Side To Blame

Kevin Brady

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Dak Prescott/Carson Wentz Is No Rivalry, And There's Only One Side To Blame

It feels like an eternity has passed since 2016, yet somehow, it was only 2 seasons ago.

The Dallas Cowboys were riding high, en route to a 13-3 season and an NFC East crown. They had drafted the league's leading rusher Ezekiel Elliott fourth overall in the previous draft, and believed to have found their franchise quarterback over 100 picks later.

Up in Philadelphia things weren't going as smoothly, but they were certainly on the upswing. After trading up to select Carson Wentz in that same 2016 draft, the Eagles also believed they had their quarterback of the future.

Cowboys/Eagles. Dak/Wentz. A debate between two hated rivals which began in 2016 and seemed like it would go on for the next decade. It was almost too perfect.

Countless articles and blog posts were written about the birth of a quarterback rivalry which would span for the foreseeable future. Which team had the better draft haul in 2016? Which team was better set up for the future behind their young quarterback?

The two met for the first time on Sunday Night football back in 2016, and for much of the night neither was very good. They both looked like rookies, but at the end of the game Dak Prescott was the one who came through in the clutch, throwing the game winner in overtime to Jason Witten. The rivalry was born, and the Cowboys had the upper hand.

Fast forward to today and things are much, much different. Prescott and Wentz have only really played each other one other time since that first match-up, a game which the Eagles dominated and Dak Prescott threw 3 interceptions.

The other two games have been meaningless and ugly, two adjectives which could describe every Cowboys game the past calendar year.

Simply put, there is no rivalry. Dak Prescott and the Cowboys have not held up their end of the bargain since that first match-up in 2016. Prescott's play has fallen off considerably, as he has fallen victim to just about every piece of lazy analysis Eagles fans gave during his miraculous 2016 season.

Doug Pederson has become the anti-Jason Garrett, quite literally making his name off being aggressive on critical downs and refusing to punt on fourth and short in plus territory. The Eagles front office has become the anti-Cowboys, going after pricey trade targets and free agents to ensure they are making the most of their young quarterback's rookie contract window.

The Cowboys have failed just about everywhere that the Eagles have succeeded. And, Dak Prescott has failed just about everywhere Carson Wentz has excelled.

Maybe things will turn around this Sunday for Dallas, and if they are able to win, they'd still be very much alive in the division race. But all of that seems highly unlikely. There is no longer a Dak/Wentz rivalry. There's barely even a reason for Eagles fans to have Dak Prescott on their radar.

Let's hope Prescott and the Cowboys can begin to change things this Sunday.



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