Todd Archer of ESPNDallas.com brings you some observations from the two-hour session on Day 1 of the Cowboys’ three-day minicamp:
* If there was an MVP for the day it would go to Dez Bryant. The third-year wide receiver was all over the field, catching passes from Tony Romo. His most impressive came on a leaping left-handed grab on a bubble screen. That the play picked up all of a couple of yards meant little. It was an impressive play. The best catch was on a back-shoulder throw from Romo, adjusting around the corner to make the play. Unofficially, Bryant had seven catches in the practice.
* Jason Garrett is big on situational play and brought out a late-game situation with the No. 1 offense going against the No. 1 defense. With the defense leading by four points, the offense had four plays to score from the 18 and was unable to come through. Defensive coordinator Rob Ryan, however, had to remind the defenders to protect the goal line.
* WR Kevin Ogletree had a “wow” moment with a one-handed grab on a deep ball from Romo. It was made better (depending on the perspective) by the fact that it came against Brandon Carr, the Cowboys’ No. 1 corner. It was the first deep-ball reception Carr has allowed this offseason.
* OLB DeMarcus Ware had two would-be sacks of Romo, both coming from the quarterback’s blindside.
* Ryan is preaching to his defense to get turnovers. The No. 3 unit forced back-to-back fumbles, with LB Caleb McSurdy punching the ball free from Darrell Scott on a pass to the flat.
* The Cowboys have some running backs on their roster even without Felix Jones practicing. Phillip Tanner continues to show quickness in hitting the holes, and rookie free agent Lance Dunbar has some make-you-miss moves, as well. That will be a good battle to watch in training camp.
* CB Teddy Williams heard it from the coaches when he had a poor reaction to an out-route throw to Andre Holmes. He nearly got beat on the same play on the next snap, but Donavon Kemp let Stephen McGee’s pass slip through his hands.
* QB Rudy Carpenter, practicing for the first time in a month because of an oblique strain, hit Saalim Hakim with a nice out route just out of the reach of CB Isaac Madison. Hakim had a difficult time catching the ball early in the OTAs but has done a better job lately.
* An interesting note among the players who did rehab work during practice (Tyrone Crawford, Felix Jones, Dan Connor, Kyle Wilber, Alex Albright, and Morris Claiborne): they did so wearing their helmets.