Wide receiver Roy Williams #11 of the Dallas Cowboys celebrates with Jason Witten #82 after scoring against the Houston Texans on September 26, 2010 in Houston, Texas.
We’ve said it before, and we’ll probably say it again, but Roy Williams can’t catch a break.
Last week at Houston, Williams had his best game thus far in a Dallas uniform, leading the team in receiving with five catches for 117 yards and two touchdowns. It wouldn’t be at all irrational, in fact, to say that Williams was the hero of the game for the Cowboys.
This was a redemptive effort from the veteran. Since coming to Dallas in a trade with Detroit two years ago, Williams has run the gauntlet of public opinion, at times quite clearly struggling with the brand of scrutiny only a few NFL cities can apply to a struggling player. On Sunday, all was forgotten.
On Tuesday, though it was back to the role of pariah--the result of a $55,000 team dinner at Pappa Bros. Steakhouse in Dallas on Monday night. The dinner, of course, was Williams’ revenge on rookie Dez Bryant, who refused to carry his shoulder pads in training camp. As the mastermind behind the extravagant feast, Williams has since become a target. Again.
This seems an inevitable development, but it’s not necessarily fair to single out Williams. Keith Brooking and Jason Witten, neither of whom attended the now-infamous dinner, have each said that they’d get Bryant back as well. Hopefully for them, their revenge is a little less publicized.
As Josh Alper points out, $55,000 is a little less than two percent of the $2.8 million Bryant is scheduled to earn this season. This won’t go far in consoling those outraged at the idea of a football team dropping 50 grand on a meal--probably quite the opposite--but it does lend some perspective.
The stark truth is that the landscape American professional sports is littered with tales of excess, of drug use and crime. This doesn’t make the number any less staggering for the average American, but it’s fair to say that those in and around the league have more appropriate outlets for their outrage than a friendly if greatly expensive team dinner. So maybe NFL culture is one of excess, particularly when held up to the current economic climate. But it’s nothing new, and it’s certainly not the fault of the 2010 Cowboys--or Roy Williams.
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