Jameill Showers, Jeff Heath, Dan Skipper ease Cowboys workload

OXNARD, Calif. – As the Dallas Cowboys get ready to return to Texas on Friday, Jameill Showers, Jeff Heath and Dan Skipper made sure their final day in California was a little brighter.

As he has done over the years, coach Jason Garrett had a competition for the players to where if they succeeded, there would be no afternoon meetings, no walkthrough and a later curfew.

Showers, a one-time quarterback turned safety, drilled the star on the facing of Jerry Jones’ midfield perch on one try. Heath, a safety, made a field goal from about 25 yards, and Skipper, an undrafted rookie tackle, caught a Chris Jones’ punt.

“They seemed excited about it and performed,” Garrett said. “Talk about execution. ... They overcame all the different obstacles and all the hurdles and the schedule was adjusted accordingly.”

The Cowboys will fly home Friday after a brief walkthrough and get ready for Saturday’s preseason game against the Indianapolis Colts at AT&T Stadium.

  • Roughly half of Thursday’s practice was conducted in pads. When the session turned to prep work for the Colts, the players were able to work in shells.

  • Before the pads came off, Dak Prescott completed 2 of 7 passes in team drills. He had one pass intercepted. He missed Dez Bryant on a deep ball with the throw too far to the outside and nearly had a crossing route to Bryant picked off by Heath. Unofficially in the 14 padded practices, Prescott completed 159 of 220 passes in team and 7-on-7 drills with six interceptions.

  • WR Cole Beasley was the sole punt returner on Thursday. WR Lance Lenoir handled the role in the first two games. With WR Ryan Switzer (hamstring) missing time, Beasley is getting a look as a candidate for the regular season.

  • C Joe Looney, who has been bothered by a toe injury since the Hall of Fame Game, took his turns with the second team. He could play Saturday.

  • If the prep work was any indication, RB Ezekiel Elliott will not play. Darren McFadden and Alfred Morris took all of the turns with the first-teamers. Garrett said if Elliott plays at all in the preseason it would be similar to the work he got last summer when he played in one game and had seven carries.