VALLEY RANCH -- It's been a long summer for the Cowboys. The team has overcome setbacks like injuries and the challenge of spotting potential players to fill key roles on the roster.
As the 2014 season opener against the San Francisco 49ers nears, all focus is now on players who will wear the star, and shine when it matters most - on the field. On Monday, Coach Jason Garrett discussed who's in, who's out and who's on the official 53-man roster.
Who's in: Safety C.J. Spillman; the safety comes from San Francisco, where he proved to be a valuable asset to the 49ers. No doubt, his knowledge of that organization will benefit the Cowboys as they prepare for their opponent on Sunday.
Who's out: Ahmad Dixon; Spillman's spot meant Dixon, another safety, was eliminated. He was notified on Monday.
Who's in: Lavar Edwards; The Cowboys picked-up the defensive end through a trade with the Tennessee Titans. He's expected to bolster the defensive line, and possibly play on the left side.
“We identified a lot of different guys to try to sign, trade for, claim; and these are the guys we ended up having the opportunity to bring in, and we feel like each of them has a role, and we want to have them come in and compete; see if they can integrate and help our football team right away,” Garrett said.
Who's in: Quarterback Dustin Vaughan. The Texas native and undrafted rookie QB appeared to impress the coaches, who added him to their list of Tony Romo backups.
“Yeah, we had a lot of discussion about that; we feel like Dustin has a lot of potential," Coach Garrett said. "We’ve always valued the quarterback position and we want to have a guy on your roster that you’re developing. We feel like he has a lot of good traits.”
With a roster set, the goal now is to prepare for the season, and the challenge ahead. Garrett says the Cowboys are getting there.
“I think we did a good job as a group as this week went on, and hopefully upgrade our team," Garrett explained. "We got a first chance to take a look at those guys today, so hopefully we can get them integrated, and just be ready collectively, for a great challenge on Sunday. The 49ers are an awfully good football team and have been for a while now. So, we understand the challenges, but we’re working hard to get ready and be our best.”