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OXNARD, California Brandon Carr called it his 'safe haven.' The Cowboys cornerback participated for the first time at training camp Saturday morning. He missed the first two weeks to be with his mother Kathy, who passed away after a battle with cancer on July 30.

'This is my safe haven out here on this field,' Carr told reporters after the morning walkthrough. 'When I get out here, there isn't many distractions. I'm in my comfort zone.'

Carr spent the last two weeks with his family in his hometown of Flint, Michigan. He said he worked out a couple hours each day, whether it was in the church parking lot next door or his old high school. His family tried to persuade him to return to the Cowboys sooner.

'I feel like it was time for me to put things in perspective and prioritize my time and know what's really important, and at the end of the day you only get one mother,' said Carr.

The cornerback is going into his seventh year in the NFL and hopes to rebound from a down year in 2013. The upcoming 2014 season now has a new kind of incentive for Carr.

'At the end of the day, like my mom always preached to me, in the midst of adversity, anything going bad, just make sure you stay taking care of business and keep yourself ready to go,' said Carr. 'I had to fall back on that when I was at home.'

E-mail tmadden@wfaa.com

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