After being absent from Valley Ranch all offseason, Dez Bryant could be limited when training camp opens next week.
Bryant spent the late spring and early summer months locked in a sort of stand-off with the team over his contract. Basically, the team gave him the franchise tag and he made it abundantly clear that he didn't want the franchise tag--he wanted a long-term contract, even going so far as to say he wouldn’t "be there” if the deadline passed without a deal.
As it happened, a deal did get done at the 11th hour, with Bryant signing to a five-year, $70 million deal with less than an hour before the deadline, but before that he missed all offseason workouts, OTAs and minicamp--a few appearances at Valley Ranch and AT&T Stadium to hang out with teammates notwithstanding.
Because of that time missed, the Cowboys will look to play it smart where Bryant’s return to action is concerned.
“We have to get our hands around Dez, he hasn’t been in a competitive training offseason and you want to make sure you don’t throw him to the wolves,” Jones said, per the Dallas Morning News. “He works hard but there’s nothing like working with your teammates in a competitive environment. It’s an art to get through the preseason without significant injuries. Those things happen but we’re going to do everything we can to manage and be better at it.”