Let Dez Bryant play with his new pet monkey this week, because I don’t want him playing against the New York Giants.
It’s a big game Sunday, sure. Division rival. Chance to jump right back into the NFC East race. I get that, but still with a chance to reach their elite potential tomorrow, the Cowboys shouldn’t risk it by jeopardizing today.
Bryant broke his foot seven weeks ago. The Falcons’ Julio Jones missed the final 12 games last season. In other words, Bryant is Superman and all, but he’s not ready. He’s not practicing this week — only working on the side with trainers — and appears to be a long-shot to play Sunday for the first time since Week 1 against these same Giants.
In his absence we’ve been painfully reminded that Bryant is by far Dallas’ most important offensive weapon. Without him and quarterback Tony Romo the offense has sputtered, averaging only 18 points per game in going 1-3. Through five games and six long weeks, Cowboys’ receivers have amassed only two touchdowns — both by Terrance Williams.
The insertion of quarterback Matt Cassel over the hapless Brandon Weeden will help. And Bryant would obviously open the offense and increase the chances of winning, much less scoring.
But until he’s cleared by doctors — and 100 percent ready — I don’t want to see Bryant on the field. He has no internal editor that allows him to carefully negotiate his effort and risk. His speed and passion have one gear, and if his body isn’t in sync that’s a recipe for further injuring the foot and flushing a season down the toilet before Romo can return a month from today.
Without Bryant the Cowboys might lose another battle Sunday But with him healthy down the stretch, there’s still a realistic chance of them winning the war.
For now, let Dez worry about his pet monkey, Dallas Bryant.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.