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August 29, 2011

Gurode situation of another example Garrett's promise of playing the best players not just lip service; could Newman be next?

Cowoboys coach Jason Garrett remarked on a number of occasions during training camp that everyone is competing and they don't talk in terms of starters.

I remember chuckling and asking him after the presser if quarterback Tony Romo was the starter or competing for his job.

Or how about Pro Bowl tight end Jason Witten or linebacker DeMarcus Ware.

Garrett smiled and kept on walking.

What was seemingly funny then is not so funny now.

I could easily have mentioned five-time Pro Bowler Andre Gurode as a player seemingly secure in his job among the so called competition at Cowboys camp.

But clearly I would have been wrong.

This was not about coach speak or lip service. Garrett was speaking the truth.

Gurode has all but been benched in favor of Phil Costa and is now facing the prospect of being traded or released.

Certainly everybody's job is not up for grabs. But Gurode's situation is a perfect example that no one is truly safe if the right and capable alternative presents itself.

This expected move of replacing Gurode with second year lineman Costa, who came to the Cowboys as an undrafted free agent last year, goes a long way in adding to Garrett's credibility in the lockerroom.

There are no longer any sacred cows on the Cowboys because of age, pedigree or salary.  The best players will play. 

Garrett took a step in that direction with the precamp departures of Roy Williams, Leonard Davis, Marion Barber and Marc Colombo.

Gurode's plight drives the point home either further.

The question now is could cornerback Terence Newman be next on chopping block?

The Cowboys have already identifed his replacement in Orlando Scandrick when they gave him a five-year contract extension with $10 million guaranteed money.

Scandrick has drawn raves the coaches since the start of camp, even before Newman went down with a groin injury sidelining him for the preseason.

He is expected to return for the season opener. Will he return as a starter or a reserve with Scandrick getting the Costa like promotion?

Clarence Hill

 

 

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