Is ex-Cowboy Dez Bryant ready to make his NFL comeback? The trainer of star wide receivers thinks so - Calvin Watkins, Dallas Morning News
Someone close to Dez Bryant thinks he’s ready for a return.
Robinson is Bryant’s confidant and trainer. He doesn’t seek the publicity, but when asked, Robinson tells you Bryant, who didn’t return a message seeking comment for this story, is ready to play in the NFL. He’s been away for two years. Bryant had a chance to return after the Cowboys released him that emotional day in 2017. Baltimore offered him a contract that he turned down. There was the haphazard visit to the Cleveland Browns facility where Bryant showed up in a sleeveless T-shirt and his agent was in a power suit. It was a mess from the beginning.
In 2018, New Orleans signed Bryant to a one-year contract, and he showed up overweight. He tore his Achilles tendon in one of the first practices, ending a dream scenario where he would catch passes from Drew Brees and giving him a legit chance of a deep playoff run. So Bryant just waited to heal. He called Robinson and told him he was ready. The early videos posted on Twitter showed Bryant looking heavy and slow.
“As for the people that say he’s not fast, Dez has never been fast,” Robinson said. “He came out of college running 4.6, 4.5, so he’ll tell you that — that’s not his game.”
Blake Jarwin thinks it’s his time.
In the past two seasons, he caught 58 passes for 672 yards and six touchdowns. In 2018, with Witten working as ESPN’s Monday Night Football analyst, he displayed flashes late in the season, including a three-touchdown game against the New York Giants.
With Witten returning in 2019, Jarwin started seven games, played 38.6% of the snaps and caught 31 passes for 365 yards with two of his three touchdowns coming against the Giants. There might have been calls from outside the Cowboys’ organization for him to see more action, but Jarwin never felt he was held back by Witten.
”I’ve always been thankful for what he’s done for me,” Jarwin said. “He never had to stop and tell me and Dalton [Schultz] about things he sees, and he did anyway. I don’t care about what people thought. We never thought like that in our tight-end room. We had a pretty close relationship. It’s going to be a little different seeing [Witten] in a Raiders jersey.”
Film room: 3 late-round sleepers for the Cowboys in the 2020 NFL draft, including a backup QB to develop - John Owning, Dallas Morning News
A QB in the draft? Perhaps it’s time Dallas made that move.
McCarthy’s ability to develop quarterbacks is a big reason why Green Bay continued to take late-round prospects during his tenure despite the fact the starting spot was secured. Instead of paying a good chunk of change for a veteran backup, McCarthy typically prefers young, developmental quarterbacks to back the starter.
So despite Cooper Rush being the team’s current young, developmental backup, the Cowboys could draft a quarterback in the late rounds, where Florida International’s James Morgan is one of the most intriguing options. Currently trending as a fifth-rounder, the Cowboys have shown interest in the small-school quarterback during the pre-draft process. Yahoo Sports’ Eric Edholm reported that Dallas is one of the teams showing “legitimate” interest in Morgan. It’s tough to know what exactly legitimate interest really is, but it’s easy to see why Dallas would be intrigued by Morgan after watching his tape.
Morgan transferred to FIU after three years at Bowling Green. At FIU, he posted 5,312 passing yards, 40 touchdowns and just 12 interceptions in two seasons while averaging 7.8 yards per attempt. Morgan was much more productive in his junior season (2018), as an ankle injury suffered in Week 1 appeared to hinder his play throughout his senior year. He was much more efficient when fully healthy, putting up more yards and touchdowns despite fewer attempts.
Stephen Jones seems to believe Dallas did a good job upgrading their defense in free agency.
Stephen Jones goes on to talk about investing in safety. While Ha Ha Clinton-Dix helps at the safety spot and is potentially an upgrade to Jeff Heath, especially in coverage, I wouldn’t argue that they “invested” at safety. Yes, he’s an outside free agent with a track record of production at the position, but the Cowboys only spent $4 million total and $2.5 million guaranteed on Clinton-Dix. It’s certainly not nothing, but to read Jones’ words, you’d think they went out and signed a premium safety.
This isn’t to criticize the Clinton-Dix signing. They made a nice move to sign the former Bears and Packers safety. However, since he’s only under contract for one season and fellow presumed starter at safety Xavier Woods is also a free agent in 2021. Clinton-Dix is a good short term fix at the position, but the Cowboys could still find themselves drafting a safety early or trading for a premiere safety. Otherwise, they’re back in this same boat next year looking to add a safety. Jones also mentions the addition of Maurice Canady as depth to help the cornerback group but admits that the Cowboys will continue to look at adding help.
At the moment, the most glaring needs are at cornerback and slot wide receiver, but in-house options could solve those problems.
The Alabama defensive tackle certainly has a body ready for the next level.
A tick taller than 6-foot-6, a mammoth 311-pounds and the second-longest arms in the defensive tackle class, Davis exemplifies the age-old question of tools verses production. After breaking out with a dominant 8.5-sack sophomore season, the Meridian, Mississippi native was well on his way to being one of the most feared linemen in the country. However, as the Alabama defense evolved around him and teams adjusted to his strength inside, his role shifted. A high-value run-stuffer that isn't going to contribute a lot in the pass rush but will anchor the defensive line and create issues with his length.
Davis' lack of finishing ability at the quarterback is somewhat of a concern for teams looking for a first-round defensive tackle. Yet, his size and build translate well and will get teams talking as soon as day two is underway. There is still a long way to go until he would be classified as a consistent starter in the league, but absolutely contribute to a team in need of some run-stopping ability and extra beef on the interior defensive line.
It’s pretty evident Dallas will draft a wide receiver, the only question is when.
Prospect Preview: The fact there are so many quality receivers in this draft could force teams such as the Cowboys to think one of two ways. Either you appreciate the value of a player available at No. 17 and realize a wide receiver could be the best on the board, or you count on the depth of this positon and figure one will be available to take in either the second or third round. Either way, it's a position of need. If any of these three receivers – Jerry Jeudy (Alabama), CeeDee Lamb (Oklahoma) or Henry Ruggs III (Alabama) are on the board at No. 17, it would make sense for the Cowboys to take one. Still, there are some other receivers that might fit if they decide to either trade down in the first or wait for the second, including TCU's Jalen Reagor, LSU's Jordan Jefferson or Tee Higgins from Clemson. Baylor's Denzel Mims and Colorado's Laviska Shenault Jr. are other possibilities of talented receivers that could help right away.
Are the 2016 Dallas Cowboys the best team in franchise history to have not won the Super Bowl? We discuss with the mothership’s Dave Helman.
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