The Cowboys will probably want to move their final preseason game so they don’t have a short week as they get ready for the season opener, the unusual Wednesday night start in New York against the Giants.
“We haven’t had those specific discussions yet, but that certainly makes sense to do that,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said Wednesday on the final day of the NFL owners meetings in Florida. “We don’t want to make a short week leading into the opener.”
Traditionally, the Cowboys finish preseason with a Thursday game and then get ready to start the regular season 10 days later.
But this year, the Cowboys begin the regular season on Wednesday, Sept. 5. That would be four days earlier than normal, so the final preseason game may not stay on Thursday.
The preseason and regular season schedules are expected to be announced before the NFL draft, which begins April 26.
Garrett said he wants to create a normal preparation week for the season opener. The game is on Wednesday instead of the traditional Thursday night because the NFL did not want to play opposite President Obama’s speech to the Democratic National Convention on Sept. 6.
“We’ll start our previous week on Wednesday, and we’ll make sure we make the accommodations to do that so the players get into a normal rhythm leading up to a ballgame,” he said. “Then afterwards, it does make it a little different. You do have more time until you play that following weekend. We’ll make the necessary adjustments.”
Garrett said the Cowboys don’t need extra motivation for a good offseason, but now that they know they’re opening with the Giants, it won’t be tough to sell.
“I think all of our players and coaches are motivated to be the best we can be in 2012,” he said. “That goes without saying, regardless of who the opponent is in Week 1. But I know as a coach, when you’re talking to your team, it’s easy to say, ‘On Wednesday night, on that first week in September, we’re going up to New York to play the world champions.’ If that doesn’t get your attention as a coach, as a player and everybody in our organization to be the best they can be each and every day, I don’t know what does.”
-- Carlos Mendez