First Down: Cowboys, Raiders, Fights, Beaches
None of Wednesday's scuffles elevated to the point of the Tuesday altercation that featured huge chunks of both rosters and Raiders fans reaching over a fence to take shots at Dallas Cowboys players. But the workout -- full-speed but not supposed to be full-contact -- escalated a half-dozen times into violence, which entertained the thousands of fans for both teams in attendance.
Those fans, along with reports of gang-related activity, caused Oxnard police to have a presence at the Cowboys facility, including more than 60 officers and an armored car. But a spokesman for the police department said drunkenness was more of a problem than crime.
Defensive Cowboys players Barry Church, J.J. Wilcox and rookie Terrance Mitchell -- the theatrical target of Raiders fans chanting "30 sucks! 30 sucks!" played on a physical edge for Dallas. Assorted Raiders did the same, many of them in a verbal battle with Cowboys star receiver Dez Bryant, who on Tuesday hooted at the Oakland secondary, "I don't even know your name, but you know mine!''
On Wednesday, I asked Dez about the exchange.
"All that is is competitive talk, but you can't let them get under your skin, you've got to get underneath theirs,'' Bryant said. "There's a little tactic I use to get them out of their game. Besides, (the Raiders) started it. If you can start it, I hope you can finish it.''
After two hours on Wednesday morning, the session was indeed finished. Both combatants returned to their corners, and as the Raiders departed, Dallas kicker Dan Bailey was charged with making a long field goal that, as is Garrett's custom, would reward the team with an afternoon off at the beach.
We’ll kick our feet up for a little while," Cowboys cornerback Morris Claiborne said, probably a good idea after two days of two teams kicking each other around.
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