No Diva In Dez
By John Helsley
Leave it to Deion Sanders, who got Dez Bryant in his mess at Oklahoma State, to apply the most appropriate take on the rugged critiques attached to Bryant leading into the NFL Draft.
“He’s not a bad guy,” Sanders said before Thursday’s first round got underway. “No one’s ever said anything about his true character; the worst thing they can say about him is he’s late. Guys flunk drug tests and don’t slip that far, yet Dez is supposedly going to drop because he’s late? Come on.”
Bryant slipped all right; and the feeling was fabulous.
Sliding down the first round, even seeing another wide receiver, Georgia Tech’s Demaryius Thomas, taken before him, Bryant slipped into the embrace of the Dallas Cowboys, who coveted Bryant and made a bold and decisive move to trade up and grab him at No. 24 once Bryant appeared in their range.
Great fit for Bryant, going to a team that is built to win now, yet needing a big-time wideout to take its offense to another level.
Enter Bryant, who has already been assigned jersey No. 88, a number with some serious history in Big D.
Listening to the draft on XM Thursday night, ESPN’s radio analysts talked about Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo getting all geeked up getting Bryant, to go with Miles Austin and Felix Jones and Marion Barber and Jason Witten.
With Bryant, the Cowboys added a playmaker who’s fast and tough with great hands and — pause here for effect, critics – passion for the game. He’ll go deep and he’ll go across the middle and he’ll make enemy defenses and plenty of teams in the 1-23 draft slots wish he were on their side.
Clearly, that’s the hope in Dallas, where Jerry Jones and Co. think they’ve added the great missing piece to push the Cowboys over the top.
And the No. 88 jersey, worn previously by stars Drew Pearson and Michael Irvin, is more than a hint.
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