FRISCO, Texas — Two weeks into organized team activities, and we're beginning to see the 2021 Dallas Cowboys take shape.
Quarterback Dak Prescott looks like nothing was ever wrong, frankly. The offensive line is rounding into health. Also, some of the Cowboys young stars are showing their potential, now that they'll actually have a real offseason to prepare.
CeeDee's ridiculous catch
The only angle that exists of this catch is one that the Cowboys media team tweeted out. This is not meant to besmirch the Cowboys media team -- they do a great job, and this was merely a byproduct of not having the best angle, but it didn't do a tremendous catch its full justice.
Prescott was flushed out of the pocket on the play, and heaved the ball a good 50 yards downfield, where Lamb skied over his defender, and made a twisting, contorting catch as he came to the ground.
Plainly put, it was outstanding.
Vander Esch's pointed comments show his desire to ball out in '21
Leighton Vander Esch is in a contract year. And he's only in a contract year because the Cowboys decided they didn't want to pick up the fifth-year option on his rookie contract.
Very clearly, Vander Esch wasn't thrilled about that decision.
He didn't call anyone out, or rant about the decision. But it was still clear he wasn't thrilled.
"That was fully their decision," Vander Esch said. "I didn't have any control over that. So, that's what they wanted to do, and it is what it is."
More on Vander Esch's frustration, and also his excitement to work in new defensive coordinator Dan Quinn's scheme, here.
Offensive line getting healthy, back to its old self. Just hope it's not old.
The Cowboys had the best offensive line in football, once upon a time. It's been a good few years since that statement was true, though.
Injuries, illnesses, and age have ravaged the once tremendous unit. But there are still three key pieces of that group on the roster, and they're all starting to get healthy again.
Guard Zack Martin and tackles Tyron Smith and La'el Collins all worked together on extracurricular drills outside the ordinary scope of practice. But they also took part in some elements of normal practice, and showed promise for their health to start 2021.
Collins said he has dropped about 10 pounds from his previous playing weight, and plans to lose another 5 pounds or so before the season. He said he feels great being lighter, but also feels as though he hasn't lost any strength. Coming off a hip surgery, both those things are promising.
Smith was scheduled to talk to the media on Thursday, but that was scrapped just prior to the player press conferences. But he also looked spry, going through drills, and seems on track to be ready to go come September.
The trio is not as young as they once were. Martin and Smith are both now 30. Not terribly old for offensive linemen, to be fair. But they've both logged a lot of miles in their careers. Dallas needs to hope they've got a few years of quality football left in the tank, to be the driving force of an offense that is loaded with skill players.
Parsons flashing the hands with an impressive interception
Cowboys first round pick Micah Parsons made a leaping interception during the team portion of practice. He was fully extended to make the pick, and then returned it down the right sideline, for a touchdown.
The rookie will have an interesting battle for playing time, with Vander Esch and Jaylon Smith already figuring to get a decent portion of the snaps at linebacker. But Parsons also is likely to be utilized in a designated pass rusher role, to further enhance his versatility within the Cowboys defensive scheme.
Nahshon Wright gets in on the interception game, too
While we're on the topic of rookies making big plays, cornerback Nahshon Wright got himself an interception, too. The 6'4 corner was a highly-coveted player for the Cowboys front office, and they spent some draft capital to get him. But he certainly looks like a player who can move, given his size. And if he pans out for this coaching staff, perhaps he could be a steal in the long run.