The Dallas Cowboys have participated in two preseason games already as they approach the 2021 NFL regular season. Even though Dallas has fallen 0-2 in the preseason, there have been some shining stars on the roster throughout training camp. Their offense will likely thrive, but the Cowboys need some help on the defensive side of the ball if they hope to take advantage of a wide-open NFC East division.

If the Cowboys’ defense can at least be mediocre, Dallas would likely be the best team in their division. They’re a long way from that though, but the front office has acquired some nice talent recently. It’ll be an interesting year for the Cowboys, as the franchise is hopeful they’ll make a playoff push this year.

There have been some standouts in training camp so far, and not just on the offense. Dallas hopes to have a more balanced team this season, which should equate to more wins. The defense has been steadily improving this offseason, which is only good news for 2021. With that said, here are three pleasant surprises in the Cowboys training camp.

Cowboys Secondary

Maurice Canaday

Maurice Canaday has had a roller coaster of a career so far. He has struggled to stay consistent but did have his best season in 2019. The fifth-year veteran hopes to continue his stretch of good play with the Dallas Cowboys. Luckily for him, Dallas has a need for cornerbacks and Canaday has shown up as a solid option in the secondary after sitting out of the 2020 season.

According to the Cowboys, not only is he balling out in training camp, but Canaday has played well against opposing quarterbacks. He picked off Matthew Stafford in the Cowboys’ joint practice against the Los Angeles Rams, then has provided solid pass coverage in the preseason so far. If he keeps this up, Canaday will likely make the final roster and could be a great asset for the Cowboys moving forward.

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Kelvin Joseph

Another stand-out cornerback in Dallas is Kelvin Joseph. With cornerback being a position of concern, Joseph has caught the coaching staff’s attention out of the gate. He’s competing with a handful of veterans, but the rookie is proving his worth so far in the offseason.

It’s yet to be determined who the starting cornerbacks will be, but Joseph is making a strong case to play opposite Trevon Diggs. We’ll see how it plays out though, as Joseph has plenty of competition in training camp. This is the best-case scenario for the Cowboys, as having a competitive group in the secondary should give Dallas the best possible defense for this season.

Cowboys Defensive Line

Randy Gregory

Randy Gregory has been in the NFL for four years now and has been a bit on the underwhelming side. However, entering the fifth year of his career, it appears as though Gregory has found a new gear. Most of his problems have been off-the-field issues. However, it seems that’s behind him now as Gregory is stepping up as a leader on the Cowboys’ defense.

There’s no question that Gregory is a talented pass rusher. If his head is on his shoulders, the Cowboys pass rush might be rather dangerous this year. Dallas needs Randy Gregory to play at a high level, as he can give the Cowboys a more balanced defense. Look for Gregory to continue standing out, as he could finally emerge as the pass rush threat the team always believed he could be.