FRISCO (105.3 THE FAN) – “You get one chance to make a first impression.” Nobody issues time-worn chestnuts like Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett, who issued that gem in review of the team’s first-ever minicamp practice at The Star in Frisco.
“Obviously, there is a transition period for these guys, they just got here yesterday,” Garrett said on Friday as the rookies (and young vets with no accrued seasons, like tight end Rico Gathers) worked for the first of a three-day session. “The biggest thing we try to do is lay out the expectations for what we want in all parts of our football team. Again, how we meet, how we walk-thru, how we practice, how we conduct ourselves on and off the field. We try to be abundantly clear with that and then we start giving them information. You start with the basics, you start with the fundamental stuff but you move quickly and you hold them accountable.”
That’s the same “process’’ that Garrett will oversee when the veterans assemble, the same process he’s overseen in all his years in Dallas. Friday was a little different, though, because while the team moved into this new facility last summer, they’d never “minicamped’’ here before.
Fourth-round rookie Ryan Switzer marveled at the “best-in-the-NFL’’ facility and his so-far experience with what he called “the best organization in football.”
“I’m extremely fortunate to be here and be a part of this team,’’ Switzer said. “There’s such a rich, winning tradition here. I know the guys pride themselves on having a great locker room and great chemistry. I’m really fortunate to be in this position.’’
First-round defensive end Taco Charlton echoed that first-day sentiment.
“It’s a great feeling,’’ he said. “It’s the first time to put the helmet on and get a chance to earn the star. It’s a great feeling to go out there and get a chance to work with a lot of other rookies and then next we get a chance to work with the vets. It’s a humbling experience, definitely.’’