It’s not very often that a 30-year old is considered the oldest guy in the department. However, you can understand why Orlando Scandrick could feel like that.
“Yea, I turned 30 but I’m still fairly young,” quipped Scandrick after Tuesday’s minicamp practice.
The cornerback is one of only two defensive backs on the Cowboys roster that is age 30 or older. Another cornerback, Nolan Carroll, is also 30-years old.
They are the veteran part of a secondary that got younger during the offseason. Gone are Brandon Carr, Barry Church and Morris Claiborne. In their place you now have rookies Chidobe Awuzie, Jourdan Lewis, Xavier Woods and Marquez White, courtesy of the NFL Draft.
So are all the new faces in the secondary a source of motivation for Scandrick?
“Of course when they bring in new people it gives you extra motivation,” Scandrick replied. “But I don’t look at it as that. I look at it as I’m going to do the things the way that I do them, which is the right way and if those guys pick up something from me, as I did from Terence Newman or Anthony Henry or Pacman Jones, that will help them in their career.”
This season is more than just playing the veteran part for Scandrick. He tore the ligaments in his right knee during training camp in 2015, missing all of that season. Scandrick did return last season and played in 12 games but was never really at 100 percent due to hamstring injuries and plantar fasciitis as a result of his return from knee surgery.
“Last year was a grind; I have never been through an injury,” said Scandrick. “Then to come back from a major knee surgery and deal with a soft tissue injury and then deal with a foot injury, it was just a lot. But that’s behind me. That all just made me stronger. I’ve refocused this offseason and I accept the challenge of the new guys coming in.”
There were also the rumors that the Cowboys were trying to trade Scandrick during the NFL Draft. What happened instead was the selection of three cornerbacks looking to take his job.
“I’m not going to give anybody my job and I’m going to come work every day,” said Scandrick. “I want to be back to where I was.”
The veteran cornerback, who was matched up at times with Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant during minicamp, may be going into training camp next month with a little bit of a chip on his shoulder.
“The time is now and my time is now.”