Cowboys players plan to get together in May to work out, if the lockout hasn’t been resolved. But they’ve agreed among themselves not to discuss the details.
In a recent radio interview with KESN’s Galloway & Co., linebacker Keith Brooking acknowledged that workouts would occur next month. He declined to talk about the specifics, citing a “pact” among the players.
“There are guys who have gotten together and are going to continue to get together in groups and work out and do our thing, and there will be some organized stuff going on later down the road,” Brooking said, via Tom Osborn of the San Antonio Express-News.
“It can be a big advantage for us,” Brooking said. “We have to get the mental aspect of [new defensive coordinator Rob Ryan's 3-4 defense] down. It’s up to us to get with the guys and go over that and try to be as prepared as we can when the time comes.”
The Cowboys were one of several teams reportedly fined by the league regarding post-season, pre-lockout contact between Ryan and his players. But if Ryan meeting with and/or talking to defensive players about his system will help the players get ready on their own for some post-lockout football, it will have been money well spent.
Coaches are strictly prohibited from having any communications with players during the lockout. Violations remain possible, however, as long as the players involved don’t blow the whistle.
Players who engage in practices take a significant risk. A serious injury would land them on the non-football injury list, allowing their teams to not pay them in 2011. (Some players have purchased disability insurance to protect against that possibility.)
Also, some players believe that only minimal preparations for the season should be made during the lockout, since it’s the teams that are preventing the players from fully preparing by implementing a lockout.