Some day I’ll get over last Sunday’s controversial overturn of Dez Bryant’s catch in Green Bay.
Today is not that day.
Why? Because as I was watching a video of the receiver's highlight catches yesterday afternoon I was reminded of his grab-and-stretch against the Giants. Ring a bell? Prepare to get mad all over again, but the catches are almost identical.
Except, of course, for the referee-ruled outcomes.
On Oct. 19 at AT&T Stadium the Cowboys led the Giants 21-14 early in the fourth quarter. Facing 3rd-and-8 at New York’s 27 Tony Romo lofted a pass down the left sideline toward Bryant, who was running in step with cornerback Prince Amukamara. Don’t stop me if you’ve heard this one before, because you saw almost an exact replica against the Packers.
At around the 5-yard line Dez jumps and outfights Amukamara for the ball. He catches it with two hands and lands with both feet on the turf. As he begins falling, he takes another step. During that process, he clearly controls the football and transfers it to his left hand. Finally he lunges toward the end zone, landing on his right elbow while outstretching the ball toward the goal line. As the ball hits the ground it jostles loose from his hand and bounds through the side of the end zone.
Ruling on the field? Touchdown.
Ruling after review by replay official? Completion, down at the 1.
Incompletion is nowhere in the discussion.
As ridiculously amazing as both catches were, they are also remarkably similar. To me, it reinforces the thought that – as he did before against the Giants – Bryant wasn’t merely trying to make a catch as he fell to the field at Lambeau. He was trying to score a touchdown. He was making an extraordinarily athletic football move.
The only difference in the plays is the location of the ball. Against the Giants it was in Bryant’s left hand. Against the Packers it was in the crook of his left arm.
So because of the subtle difference in the position of the ball, we’re supposed to be accepting of the Cowboys’ drastic difference or location this weekend.
I’m not there. And neither should you.
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 currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.