Postcard from Camp: Replacement referees show up


Postcard from Camp: Replacement referees show up

DAY13: New wrinkle on Monday. The full pads practice was held in the morning and the players had just a little afternoon film and classroom work in the evening. It was the first time the padded practice was held in the a.m. This was practice No. 9.

Warm, Dry. Clear. Freakin' perfect.


WHAT THEY DID9:00-9:45: The same walkthrough, stretching, positionalstretching, positional drills that they always do. 9:45: 7-on-7 drills
10:00: Special teams (onsides kicks)10:15: 11-on-11 (drilling off Saints offensive sets; switch and work on Saints defensive sets)

Referees on the field. Three of them. And they were replacement refs since the real stripes are on strike. Or locked out. Or whatever. They're not working. Worst-case scenario will be if these officials aren't appreciably worse than the lamentably inconsistent crews they're replacing. And that's a possibility that hasn't been entertained enough.

Sergio Brown had a nice practice, earning praise at different junctures from Bill Belichick for his special teams and safety work.

Alex Silvestro, the newly christened tight end, got stuck hard by Malcolm Williams in a 1-on-1 tackling drill.

Offensive lineman Nick McDonald was in full pads for the first time. James Ihedigbo, who was in a full-contact jersey for the first time Sunday, was in shorts and a t-shirt on Monday. Brandon Spikes wasn't at practice either.

Visanthe Shiancoe, Daniel Fells, Myron Pryor, Alfonzo Dennard and Jonathan Fanene didn't practice.

Sergio Brown. Good kid. Seemed to have his first solid practice of camp.

Malcolm Williams. The seventh round pick in 2011 made a few solid plays and has flashed more frequently at defensive back the past few days.

Four killed in crash involving Dallas Cowboys' bus


Four killed in crash involving Dallas Cowboys' bus

PHOENIX (AP) -- A bus carrying Dallas Cowboys staffers but no players and a van collided Sunday on an Arizona highway, killing four people in the van, authorities said.

The bus occupants emerged uninjured from the crash, Arizona Department of Public Safety spokesman Quentin Mehr said.

"All on the bus came through OK with some bumps and bruises," Cowboys spokesman Rich Dalrymple said in an email.

Dalrymple said the bus was only carrying members of the franchise's staff but would not say how many. There were no players on board.

Mickey Spagnola, a columnist for the team's website, has been writing for the past week about traveling on a Cowboys bus with a driver, the team mascot and videographer. On his Twitter page, Spagnola tweeted before 2 p.m. that the bus was 80 miles outside of Vegas.

The two vehicles collided in the afternoon on U.S. 93, about 30 miles north of the city of Kingman or 180 miles northeast of Phoenix, according to DPS.

The crash shut down at least one lane of the highway that serves as the main route between Las Vegas and Phoenix.

The bus was on its way to a Dallas Cowboys fan event in Las Vegas. Charles Cooper, manager of GameWorks entertainment center in Vegas, said the session with 50 to 75 fans was scheduled for 3 p.m. PDT. People were already waiting when the president of a Las Vegas Cowboys fan club called to relay news of the accident. The event was subsequently canceled. Cooper says the team mascot was supposed to appear.

After the Las Vegas stop, the bus was scheduled to go on to Oxnard, California for the team's training camp. Members of the organization typically take a bus two weeks before the camp starts and make stops along the way.