Next season officially becomes this season today as the team that came within a controversial replay overturn of the NFC Championship Game in 2014 begins working toward 2015.
With the beginning of the team’s off-season workout program, there is one player who should be missing at Valley Ranch – Dez Bryant.
The receiver has been publicly disappointed that the team franchised him in lieu of a long-term contract, and since he has yet to sign the franchise tender he has no obligation to participate. The Cowboys want Bryant – now solidified as a team leader – to take part in the program, but the receiver has no protection against injury without a contract. Same situation in Denver for receiver Demaryius Thomas, who was franchised by the Broncos and has since skipped the voluntary off-season workouts.
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By now we should be assured of Bryant’s work ethic. He’s a fitness freak and his effort and intensity are among the most intense in the NFL.
Bryant skipping workouts would in no way mean he’s going to sit on the couch binge-watching Silicon Valley and gaining 15 pounds of flubber. It will, however, send a message to management that he’s serious about being unhappy with his contract.
What would Bryant miss if he no-shows?
Players will be supervised by strength and conditioning coach Mike Woicik in Phase One. The next phase starts May 4 and runs three weeks, allowing position coaches to work with individual players. Phase Three starts May 26 with Organized Team Activities and ends with a mandatory June 16-18 minicamp.
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.