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OXNARD, Calif. (AP) — The signing of free agent linebacker Anthony Barr could nudge young star Micah Parsons closer to being primarily a pass rusher for the Dallas Cowboys.

The club also had depth in mind with the addition of Barr, a four-time Pro Bowler who spent his first eight seasons in Minnesota.

Dallas had shown interest in him long before training camp in California.

Barr is starting his stint with the Cowboys on the physically unable to perform list, not for an injury but because the club is taking a conservative approach getting the 30-year-old ready for camp practices.

Parsons had 13 sacks on his way to winning NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, tied for the third-most for a first-year player since sacks became an official statistic in 1982.

Because of injuries early last season, there were times Parsons played the majority of his snaps at defensive end, and the Cowboys usually had two other linebackers on the field.

The addition of Barr means the top three choices in the new mix, which includes Leighton Vander Esch, are former first-round picks.

“I think when you look at packages and how we feature Micah, I think it gives you another weapon, another excellent player on and off the ball,” coach Mike McCarthy said. “I think when you get in and out of packages as you build your system for a 17-game season, I know the defensive staff is real excited to have another piece.”

Barr’s career high for sacks is four from his rookie year with the Vikings in 2014, when he was the ninth overall pick. The 6-foot-5 Barr is more in the mold of Vander Esch (6-4) as a traditional linebacker.

When Parsons lines up at defensive end, including in the three-point stance the Cowboys envision on occasion, Barr and Vander Esch could be paired on the second level behind him.

“I’m just trying to continue to help unlock his game and allow him to be the best player he can be,” Barr said of Parsons. “Pretty amazing what he was able to accomplish. I think he can just continue to elevate and take it to the next level. I’m hoping to be a tool and resource to him and also to learn from him and learn from all the guys.”

Barr was a steady presence during his first six seasons in Minnesota, including four straight trips to the Pro Bowl from 2015-18. A torn pectoral muscle sidelined him for the season in Week 2 in 2020. He then missed the first four games last year with a knee injury.

Because he went unsigned through the offseason, Barr’s first practice at camp will be his first since the end of last season. He said there was never a specific timeline for finding a new team.

“Timing is everything,” Barr said. “No rhyme or reason to it. It was just the right time for both parties. Hopefully, it’s a good marriage.”

Second-year player Jabril Cox was cleared for camp after tearing an anterior cruciate ligament in Week 8 against Minnesota last season, although he recently was given a couple of days off.

The Cowboys are high on rookie fifth-round pick Damone Clark, who fell in the draft because of spinal fusion surgery that could sideline him all of this season. The injuries to Cox and Clark are two more reasons the Cowboys had interest in Barr.

McCarthy remembers Barr from facing the Vikings as coach in Green Bay. And part of Barr’s interest in Dallas came from senior defensive assistant George Edwards, who was Minnesota’s defensive coordinator for Barr’s first six seasons.

“We always had to be very, very conscious of the matchup that you had with him,” McCarthy said. “We want to be multiple in our defensive packages and we want to continue to develop different rush plans. He’s a great fit for us.”

NOTES: The Cowboys are thin at RB in camp with Rico Dowdle and rookie Aaron Shampklin in COVID-19 protocols. They also lost their only fullback for at least a couple of weeks as Ryan Nall battles a shoulder injury.

___

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The Challenge Star Chris CT Tamburello Dishes on The Most Dangerous Game

Mill Creek Entertainment Chris "CT" Tamburello in "The Most Dangerous Game."

Five-time champion of MTV’s “The Challenge,” Chris CT Tamburello,” has headed to the big screen in the new action film “The Most Dangerous Game,” a remake which was originally published in “Collier’s” magazine in 1924.

The movie was released on August 5th and is available digitally and at select theaters across the United States.

Heavy’s Stephen McCaugherty spoke with CT about his role and what it was like starring alongside names such as Tom Berenger, Casper Van Dien and Judd Nelson. They also touched on other topics like the comparison of reality TV, and specifically starring on “The Challenge,” to playing a role in a movie.

You can watch the entire interview via the embedded YouTube video below:

Play
'The Challenge' Star Chris 'CT' Tamburello Talks Johnny Bananas Rivalry, 'The Most Dangerous Game'Stephen McCaugherty spoke with "The Challenge" legend Chris "CT" Tamburello about "The Most Dangerous Game," a movie he's starring which releases on August 5th digitally and at select theaters. They also discussed his rivalry with Johnny Bananas on "The Challenge," and whether or not he plans to return to the franchise. (00:00) – Intro (00:45)…2022-08-01T13:59:24Z CT Plays a World War II Veteran Who Must Fight for His Life Should He Want to Survive on a Remote Island

For those who haven’t seen “The Most Dangerous Game’s” trailer, CT explained the plot and briefly introduced his character, World War II veteran, Sanger Rainsford, who suffers from PTSD from what he witnessed and had to do during the war.

“A man (Sanger) comes back from World War II and he is completely broken, and his father is trying to snap him out of it because he loves him so much. And he comes up with this idea to go on this big hunting.

“They’re trying to take the shortcut, long story short, and they end up getting stuck on this island. And come to find out [there’s] this runaway Nazi who’s been using this small island as his personal hunting ground.

“He’s become bored hunting primitive animals — it’s become stale — and we are his next target. His prey. And so basically, we’ve got to run around and try to survive. He makes a game out of it because he’s crazy.

“He basically hunts us for three days and if we survive for three days, then he let us go, allegedly.”

You can watch “The Most Dangerous Game” trailer below:

Play
The Most Dangerous Game – TrailerA father and son are shipwrecked on a remote island where they are caught up in a trophy hunt held by its mysterious owner, a merciless man who uses the land as an elite hunting preserve for stalking the most dangerous game of all: human.2022-06-27T15:58:34Z CT’s Experienced Co-Stars Helped Mentor Him During the Filming of ‘The Most Dangerous Game’

Several well-known actors star in “The Most Dangerous Game,” including Tom Berenger who played Sgt. Barnes in Platoon and Jake Taylor in “Major League,” and Bruce Dern, whose known for playing roles in movies like “The Cowboys” and “The Hateful Eight.”

CT said in the interview that he used to watch his future co-stars when he was growing up.

And “The Challenge” star, who had only acted in one other movie prior to “The Most Dangerous Game,” playing Brett Michael in 2019’s “Habitual,” said that the Hollywood veterans took time to teach him “some tricks of the trade.”

“I was very lucky to have worked with all of them,” CT said. “I mean, they all took time, you know. Give the new kid on the block some tricks of the trade. It was really nice.”

“I would go to the set even if I wasn’t shooting just to watch them in action,” he continued.

CT had also enlisted an acting coach to help prepare him for the role. “She had really done a good job of preparing me and [teaching me] common mistakes to avoid.”

And the five-time “Challenge” champion shared how grateful he was to have had the opportunity to share a movie set with such notable talent.

“Just to hear them riff about stuff in between tapes… it was a great learning experience,” CT said. “I mean, for this to be my first one. You know, I’m very lucky. I really believe that. I really feel like the stars have aligned for me.”

You can listen to the entire interview by tapping here.

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