Cowboys kicker David Buehler was initially angry when told he wasn't going to be allowed to kickoff in Thursday's preseason opener.
But once he calmed down, Buehler understood why the Cowboys used his competition Dan Bailey on kickoffs. Kickers coach Chris Boniol and special teams coach Joe Decamillis said his penchant for touch backs robbed the Cowboys of a chance to work on coverage last preseason, resulting in poor results in the regular season.
"I was a little testy," Buehler said. "But last preseason I had a lot of touch backs and didn't get the cover guys any reps. It kind of bit us in the butt during the season. They weren't prepared to cover. They were expected me to put it in the end zone every time. They thought Dan was going to kick coverable balls. But he had some touch backs himself."
Thanks to the new kickoff rules, which places the ball on 35-yard line rather than the 30, Bailey had two touch backs on five kickoffs. The Cowboys had solid coverage on the three returned kicks, as the Broncos started on the 14, the 20 and the 12-yard line.