The Cowboys took defensive end Randy Gregory off the Non Football Injury list and he participated in the team’s walk-through practice at training camp on Wednesday in Oxnard, Calif.
Dallas coach Jason Garrett said the team will not rush Gregory into full-contact drills, but the defensive lineman appears to be setting a good pace.
“It’s really just an opportunity for us to get him out on the practice field and the grass sessions in the morning,” Garrett said. “We’re still going to be very deliberate with him in terms of getting him back into a full-speed practice. He’s been away from football for a long time. He’s doing very well. He did a good job keeping himself in shape. He’s done a good job since he’s been here.”
Gregory served multiple suspensions for violating the NFL’s substance abuse policy that kept him out of action for most of the 2016 and 2017 seasons.
Dallas drafted Gregory in the second round of the 2015 draft. He played in 12 games in 2015 with limited production. Since then, he only saw the field for two games at the end of 2016, but recorded his first career sack. Gregory didn’t play last season.
But he appears ready for full duty in 2018 and the Cowboys need him. Defensive end Demarcus Lawrence posted 14.5 sacks and 35 tackles last season, but there’s a steep drop-off after Lawrence in terms of defensive line production.