The Dallas Cowboys put on an abysmal performance against the Denver Broncos. For the second year in a row. Not just the preseason game, but the intrasquad scrimmage leading up to the game, featuring the starters.

They were bullied, pushed around and only displayed a handful of solid performances from select players. Even worse was the lack of discipline in the barrage of flags, and the amount of fights they allowed themselves to get into, and lose.

Despite all this, it seems like they got the message. The Dallas Cowboys spent the last two practices in Irvine, CA. Sharing joint practices with their Saturday opponent LA Chargers.

The energy is showing a noticeable difference on the practice fields.

QB Dak Prescott is getting work with a number of receivers, as CeeDee Lamb was held out after a cut on the bottom of his foot. Displaying connections with Simi Fehoko, Jalen Tolbert, and Dennis Houston, the undrafted rookie from Western Illinois.

Even QB Cooper Rush put himself back in the competition for QB2 with a solid outing in team drills. Connecting with receivers at a better consistency than last Saturday.

In an even more encouraging sign is his incumbent WR2 Michael Gallup. The WR took snaps with Prescott at the end of practice against air. An encouraging sight as he continues his rehab from a torn ACL.

As if the passing game wasn’t enough of an encouraging sign of the offense, the offensive line got their hands full of future Hall of Famer Khalil Mack.

While Mack got the better of Tyron Smith and Josh Ball, both were reportedly able to win reps as practices went along. The offense, seen as the weak link against Denver, is showing signs of growth.

Speaking of winning reps on the line, Micah Parsons continues his dominant summer, only adding to his 2022 hype. In fact, it looks like it’s having an effect on teammates.

Rookie Sam Williams had some noteworthy plays against the Chargers. Williams, who has taken snaps inside, as well as out on the edges, is showing constant growth as a defender. Displaying power and speed.

Not to be outdone, rookie defensive back DaRon Bland continues his dominant off-season. Being the talk of camp in the secondary, potentially taking the CB4 job from Kelvin Joseph or Nahshon Wright.

The defense was a bright spot from an ugly week in Denver, but continues to look dominant. Building off an impressive 2021 season, looking to be even better.

For all the criticism (rightfully so) from last week’s practices and game performances, a reinvigoration on both sides of the field is a welcomed sign. Just like last week, we need to remind ourselves, it’s only preseason.

However, the bar is low for the Dallas Cowboys this year. The dark cloud hanging over them from the off-season remains, but the product on the field is bringing a bit of sunshine.

While small, the energy and production on the field is something build off of. Especially after the rough start.

Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports