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      Clay's Clincher: High Praise for Rookie Cornerback

      While most of the focus on the Dallas Cowboys defensive backfield thus far in San Antonio has concerned the battle between 2nd-year pros Mike Jenkins and Orlando Scandrick for the starting CB position opposite Terence Newman, a rookie corner is making an impact at camp.

      The play of the day Friday at the Alamodome was in 7-on-7 drills, when the 5th round draft pick Mike Mickens out of Cincinnati timed a Tony Romo throw perfectly and took a pass meant for Roy Williams directly out of #11's hands.

      While defensive backs coach Dave Campo is quick to point out that Mickens has a ways to go before even being considered for inclusion in the nickel package, he admits he has seen improvement out of the former Bearcat every single day of mini-camp, OTAs, and here in San Antonio.

      Head coach Wade Phillips was even more effusive yesterday, claiming Mickens has what he calls "Everson Walls-type hands".

      Comparisons with the Cowboys' all-time interceptions leader and a should-be hall-of-famer?

      Not exactly damning the rook with faint praise, are we?