We’re already approaching one week of Dallas Cowboys training camp in the books, and there have been plenty of reports regarding which players are excelling and which are leaving something to be desired. So how much do early training camp results matter?
The answer is simultaneously "a lot" and "not very much." Early training camp play doesn’t matter because it’s such a small sample of a player’s ability. In the same way that we shouldn’t judge the quality of a player by a single game, we shouldn’t label him one way or the other after a week of practices.
Nonetheless, these practices have the ability to matter a lot for certain players because they’re going to influence coaches’ opinions. There are only a limited number of preseason games in which players have an opportunity to impress the coaches, so practice time matters a whole lot for fringe players. There aren’t that many weeks left before the start of the regular season, so each week of training camp is a big one for the players who don’t have a roster spot locked down.
Regardless of a player’s status with the team, though, we always want to see quality play to start training camp. Here are six players/positions that are either trending upward or downward through the early stages of camp.