The Cowboys welcomed guard Mackenzy Bernadeau to practice for the first time since in training camp and it couldn’t have come at a better time for the team’s ravaged offensive line.
Bernadeau has been out since May because of hip surgery. He began training camp on the Physically Unable to Perform list.
“It felt good to be with my teammates, get some plays down,” Bernadeau said. “They’re monitoring everything I do, so there are no setbacks. Right now, I’m focusing on playing guard … and getting healthy.”
Bernadeau, who played in Carolina the last four years, signed a four-year, $11 million contract to help solidify to the guard spot. But the Cowboys had also hoped to give him a try a center in training camp.
He did only individual drills in practices yesterday and will be initially worked in at guard but his move to center is inevitable because of the injuries and the need for a capable performer.
Bill Nagy (ankle) and Kevin Kowalski (ankle) were supposed to compete with Phil Nagy for the starting center role but they will start the season on the injured list and may not be available for six weeks.
David Arkin and Harland Gunn have filled in being Costa and have had trouble getting the snap to the quarterback.
Vice-president Stephen Jones shot down any talk of the Cowboys adding a center to the roster because he said Bernadeau will start taking snaps at the position.
“At some point, we’ll put the ball in Bernardeau’s hands. He’s done it before. It’s not totally foreign to him,” Jones said.