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December 11, 2012

Garrett recalls Jerry Brown as enthusiastic player, on and off field

Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett shared a story Monday evening that spoke to the off-field enthusiasm of linebacker Jerry Brown, who died in a Saturday car wreck and will be memorialized this afternoon in a private ceremony attended by team personnel.

Brown, a member of the Cowboys’ practice squad, died when teammate Josh Brent, a defensive tackle, lost control of his vehicle after leaving a night club. Brent was charged with intoxicated manslaughter and released Sunday on $500,000 bond.

Garrett said he spoke recently with Emily Robbins, the Cowboys’ director of community and alumni affairs, and Robbins identified Brown as one of the team’s most enthusiastic participants in a recent outing in which players distributed gifts to children.

“The young players put on Santa Claus hats and they were delivering gifts,” Garrett said. “She said he had the hat on, and he was, ‘Where is everybody?” He was there first and just ready to go and do his thing. I think he loved being here, and I think he loved his teammates and I think everybody sensed that. I think that’s why everybody kind of rallied behind him even though we didn’t know him that long.”

Brown joined the Cowboys’ practice squad on Oct. 24 and, in Garrett’s estimation, had been one of the most difficult players for starters to handle during practices since his arrival because of his relentless effort.

“I don’t want to overstate Jerry, but … he loved to practice. He loved all of that stuff,” Garrett said. “His desire to play (stood out). Every day, this guy is rushing us and he’s getting to the quarterback. The number of times I said (to tackles and tight ends), ‘You better block this guy.’ He just had a passion for playing. I think our players know that about him. And he certainly loved being here.”

_ Jimmy Burch



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