Saturday, June 06, 2009

DMN Blog: Patrick Crayton confident he can pass test

By Tim MacMahon/Blogger

The coaches wanted Mat McBriar to rest his leg during a training camp practice a couple of years ago, so they had Patrick Crayton fill in as the punter during coverage drills. But Crayton used his arm, not his leg, to fling one 60-plus-yard spiral after another.

So we know Crayton has a cannon. We're just not sure about the accuracy of his right arm.

It's a subject worth discussing because Crayton is the trigger man in the Razorback, the Cowboys' version of the Wildcat formation. Injured (again) ex-college QB Isaiah Stanback is another candidate for the job. Crayton also played some quarterback in college, completing 128 of 221 passes for 1,837 yards and 19 touchdowns with eight interceptions as a senior at Northwestern Oklahoma State.

The Razorback certainly isn't designed to be a passing formation, but it'd be a big bonus if the Cowboys can throw the ball effectively enough to exploit defenses focused on keeping Felix Jones from getting in the open field.

Crayton didn't exactly put on a passing clinic yesterday. His two passes both fell incomplete, one a throwaway and the other an ugly throw that landed behind Martellus Bennett's ankles.

Crayton, whose only NFL pass was intercepted, has only worked on throwing in goof-off "quarterback competitions" with fellow receivers during special teams portions of practice since becoming a Cowboy.

"We'd line the bags up like 30 yards away, and you'd have certain points - the head shot, the body shot and then below the waist," Crayton said. "It's coming along."