CARROLLTON, TX - JUNE 16: Wide receiver Patrick Crayton #84 of the Dallas Cowboys makes a catch against Mike Mickens #33 during mini camp at Standridge Stadium on June 16, 2009 in Carrollton, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
All of a week old, the battle for the number two receiving spot behind Roy Williams--the second most intriguing position battle in camp, in fact--is over.
According to Tim MacMahon at the Dallas Morning News Cowboys Blog, receivers coach Ray Sherman has said the starting spot opposite Williams belongs to Patrick Crayton.
"Patrick is the guy right now," Sherman said. "Patrick is having a very good camp, and I think the guys are really in tune. They don't care about who starts. The only thing we want to do is be productive and help this team get to where we want to go, and that's basically where the focus is now."
This is a fairly sensible move considering Crayton's experience. He earned the role, and proved effective in it, in 2007 after the injury to Terry Glenn. In 13 starts that year, he had 50 catches, 697 yards and 7 touchdowns (a career high, and one off Roy Williams' career high).
Crayton only started 7 games in 2008, and this was reflected in the stats, somewhat; he had a still-respectable 39 catches for 550 yards and 4 touchdowns.
By all accounts, Miles Austin and Sam Hurd--who many thought would challenge for the role-- have each been having a good training camp early; but Dallas will opt for consistency and experience by giving Crayton the starting nod over the two talented, though hitherto often-injured pair.