The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Sports

August 8, 2013

Guarding Romo becoming a concern for Cowboys

OXNARD, Calif. — Tony Romo drew plenty of laughs when he joked on the first day of training camp that his offensive line looked good “running up and down the sideline.”

It’s getting to the point where it’s not funny for the Dallas Cowboys.

Dallas has had injury problems at guard since training camp started more than two weeks ago. And now the Cowboys are in serious pursuit of a veteran.

They’ve already been turned down once. Former New York Jets lineman Brandon Moore decided not to sign with the Cowboys on Wednesday, a day after the 10-year veteran tentatively agreed to a deal.

The Cowboys didn’t want Moore as a fill-in. They wanted the 33-year-old to start before he told them he was planning to retire.

Both of last year’s starting guards, Nate Livings and Mackenzy Bernadeau, have missed significant time at training camp. Livings might not be ready for the regular season after two surgeries on his right knee in six months.

“We’re pretty depleted on the offensive line right now,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. “You just try to address the needs where you have them.”

Livings missed the first week of camp with a cut on his foot, and was just days into this return when the surgically repaired knee that also bothered him in offseason workouts flared up again.

Bernadeau didn’t even make it to the first workout. He strained a hamstring in the pre-camp conditioning test and missed two weeks. He returned last week and could play in the second preseason game Friday night at Oakland.

But the pursuit of Moore — and the continuing pursuit of someone else after his change of heart — made it clear the Cowboys aren’t counting on Livings and Bernadeau just a year after signing both as free agents.

“I think the fact that they’re limited, they’ve had injury, they’ve been out of camp, they were out of the preseason,” Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said. “I think that you could say yes that had something to do with it. That and the fact we’re relatively young in there.”

Romo could have two new starting guards for the second straight year, not to mention a rookie center in Travis Frederick. One of those guards could be Ron Leary, a second-year player who was undrafted out of Memphis in part because of chronic knee problems.

Leary also missed the start of camp because of a back problem.

If Leary and Frederick are starters for the season opener Sept. 8 against the New York Giants, it will be the first NFL game for both. Even if Livings and Bernadeau are ready, there’s a chance somebody not on the roster right now will be on the depth chart ahead of them.

“I think you have to recognize that you’ve got a young group,” Jones said. “If we bring in a substantive veteran, it will be about him more than a couple of the things that we would be looking at.”

Jones said the Cowboys were looking to give Romo an “extra half-second” of protection when they passed on chances to upgrade their defensive line in the draft and traded down to get Frederick at No. 31.

Then Livings and Kevin Kowalski, a backup guard, went down about the same time at camp, forcing Dallas to add two linemen in one day. One was James Nelson, who was living just 10 minutes from training camp after Dallas decided not to sign him following rookie camp in May.

But Nelson was seen as just camp filler. Things have changed now.

“It’s always urgent,” Garrett said. “It was urgent in the offseason leading up to the draft. It was urgent after that. And it’s getting more and more urgent as you get closer to the games. The injuries have been the biggest issue.”

They’re getting serious enough that Romo probably won’t be joking about them anytime soon.

1
Text Only
Sports
  • David Clyde Ex-MLBer goes from pitching phenom to Connie Mack coach

    David Clyde was a picture of contentment after his Houston Miracles shut out the Texas Stix Black of the Dallas area 4-0 in the first round of the Connie Mack South Plains Regional Tuesday at David Allen Memorial Ballpark.

    July 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Majors fall Majors stumble late, fall to regional losers' bracket

    Cherry Creek, Colo., broke out for six runs in the top of the seventh for a 7-3 come-from-behind victory over the Enid Majors in the first round of the Connie Mack South Plains Regional Tuesday at David Allen Memorial Ballpark.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Bob Stoops Sooners, as usual, managing expectations

    High hopes are always attached to Oklahoma and this year is no different with the Sooners entering the 2014 season as a consensus pick to reach the first College Football Playoff.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Mike Gundy Former OSU line coach having impact on Texas staff

    It was quite possibly the biggest coaching coup of the offseason and Oklahoma State was at the wrong end of it – former Cowboy offensive line coach Joe Wickline joining the staff for Charlie Strong's Texas Longhorns.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Charlie Strong Texas’ Strong prefers not talking national title

    Charlie Strong riled up plenty of Texas fans during a statewide spring tour by saying the Longhorns wouldn’t be in the national championship game.
    The new coach toned down his honest assessment in future stops, then said Tuesday in his first appearance at Big 12 media days that he prefers not even talking about championships.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • A new ACC? New ACC settles into era of stability

    Welcome to the new Atlantic Coast Conference.
    It’s where a founding member is out, a fast-rising program is in, Notre Dame is there, too — sort of — and nobody else is leaving.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Devonte Fields TCU’s Fields investigated for alleged assault

    TCU suspended defensive end Devonte Fields on Tuesday pending the results of a police investigation into whether he punched a former girlfriend in the head and threatened her with a gun while shouting, “I should blast you!”

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Minors lose in first round

    Wren Perry and Garrett Scudder combined for a two-hitter as the D-Bats Gallegos of Dallas run-ruled the Enid Minors 8-0 in six innings in the first round of the South Plains Regional Tuesday at David Allen Memorial Ballpark.

    July 22, 2014

  • Radio-TV for 7-23-14

    July 22, 2014

  • Baseballpicture.jpg Majors open regional with Cherry Creek

    The Enid Majors (36-12) enter the Connie Mack South Plains Regional Tournament today at David Allen Memorial Ballpark coming off one of their best seasons in the past few years. Now, the pressure is on as they face Cherry Creek, Colo.,at 8:15 tonight.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

Click here for NASCAR headlines
Sports Photos


Enid News & Eagle sports photos from the month of February 2014. Enjoy all the ENE photos with full access at http://enidnews.smugmug.com.