Stanley: Ready to Rumble

Rookie Montavious Stanley quickly discovered the differences between college football and the NFL.

Out of all of the players Dallas chose in this year's draft and welcomed -- along with a slew of free agents -- to the team's weekend mini-camp, perhaps none seemed more wide-eyed than defensive lineman Montavious Stanley.

It's not that the 6-foot-2, 313-pounder out of Louisville doesn't have the talent to play in the NFL -- the sixth-round draftee has a good chance to make the team and join the team's rotation of interior linemen, a group anchored by Jason Ferguson. But the level of talent -- even at an event featuring a group of hopefuls and never-will-be's -- obviously impressed Stanley.

"I thought it went well," Stanley said Sunday. "Obviously, everybody I went against is pretty good. All the offensive linemen here this weekend, they were all first-teamers in college.

"I've got to pick up the intensity, and I've got to come in in better shape."

Stanley admitted he anticipated a more moderate pace from the coaches as they introduced their new players to the schemes the team uses. Instead, the coaching staff exposed the young players to a great deal in the three days.

"I didn't expect them to throw all these defenses at us this fast," Stanley said, "but overall, I thought we handled it really well. There's a lot of guys here who didn't have that many defensive looks in their whole college career, and now we get that in three days. It's a lot of information, but we handled it OK."

That ability to absorb information and learn will be vital, Stanley said, because at the professional level, brawn alone is not enough to guarantee success.

"In college, I could pretty much manhandle everyone," he said. "Now you've got to be stronger, and to know more. You have to understand what the offensive linemen are trying to do to you, because at this level, they're just as big and strong. It's obvious you can't just push people around here -- you've got to have a much better understanding of how the defense works."

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