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Dez Bryant's Evolution To A Leader For The Dallas Cowboys

From a troubled start to his his NFL career, Dez Bryant is now becoming a leader for the Dallas Cowboys.

Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

Dez Bryant, not too long ago, was thought to be another troubled player the Cowboys took a chance on that could implode and make Jerry Jones and Co. look bad. Bryant first ran into trouble way back in college at Oklahoma State, where he was suspended for most of a season for what in retrospect was a pretty minor offense. That, along with some other disciplinary problems at college, sent him tumbling down the draft board in 2010 until Jerry Jones grabbed him at pick #24.

Once Bryant was a Cowboy, troubled followed him. Not major trouble like some NFL players, but a series of minor events that seemed to reinforce the image that Bryant would never learn, that he was destined to bottom out at some point. His talent was undeniable, his off field behavior was questionable. The jewelry debts, the "pants incident" at a mall, the problems with his family and his mother that let to a brief charge of domestic violence. The Cowboys used Calvin Hill and other mentors to help Dez get his path straightened out.

Dez has turned that corner and is now thought of as a leader. Earlier this offseason, we chronicled the praise heaped on him by Jason Garrett, comparing #88 to a former #88 who was hands-down a leader of the great 90s teams, Michael Irvin.

So why do I bring this up now? I ran across something that was written recently about Dez Bryant, in relation to Calvin Johnson. It shows how perception about everything else you do can change the way people view specific incidents. Remember back to the epic sideline rant last season during the Cowboys-Lions game when everybody accused Dez of having a meltdown on the sidelines? The media started wagging their fingers at Dez, calling him out for bad behavior. The audio of some of that was released later and it showed that Dez was actually being positive in his fiery speech.

Anyway, fast forward to now, where a writer now thinks that Calvin Johnson could use a little of that Dez fire.

Despite the hype surrounding the wide receiver, [Calvin] Johnson needs to be the leader of the team like he is capable of being. Sources around the league have said Johnson is very humble and doesn’t really speak unless it is matter that needs to be dealt with. There has to be some ground with Johnson barking at his teammates if they had a miscue on their end or need some type of spark that could make the players want to play.

Johnson needs to be more vocal; for an example look at Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant who gets his teammates’ blood running after a bad play or when they are down and out.  He gives them that extra push to get them excited to make a big play down the field.

This is just one writer's opinion, but it is kind of funny that was once thought of as bad behavior, could now be seen as leadership. Michael Irvin was very vocal on the sidelines during his time in Dallas, too.

So what say you BTB, has Dez permanently turned the corner, and now is a leader on the team?

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