The Dallas Cowboys cut Dez Bryant. That sounds crazy doesn’t it?
First of all if it does sound crazy to you maybe we need to understand Jerry Jones more. I think most “Old-School” Cowboys fans know where I’m going with this. The very first thing Jerry Jones did after becoming the new owner of the Dallas Cowboys was fire the only head coach the team had ever known. His name was Tom Landry. He coached the Cowboys from their first year, 1960 all the way to 1988.
Tom Landry was almost instantly replaced by Jimmy Johnson. Both moves almost dividing the fan base completely between the “Bleeding Blue” Old Guard of fans who took it as a personal slap in the face. To the younger, more forward-thinking fans whom were tired of the recent slump, and hungry for a change of ANY kind.
Jerry Jones didn’t turn the Dallas Cowboys into the single most valuable sports team in the world by making popular decisions. You’ll find most massively successful people are not necessarily liked by all. Those people are a different breed, and whether we like it or not, they are necessary.
I could compile a list of former Dallas Cowboys, all of whom made massive contributions to the team and its legacy, but for this example, I’m only using one, and he was kind of a big deal. Emmitt Smith. Yes, the leading rusher in NFL history.
Emmitt was not the player he used to be
Granted, he played from 1990-2002 with Dallas, but he had not broken a 1200 yard season in roughly 3 seasons. Emmitt was loved by all, and for good reason. He was a HUGE part of the 3 Super Bowl wins in the 90’s, but was also a great man, and never caused issues or headaches to the team.
Smith was released because it was the “right thing to do for the Dallas Cowboys.” We heard this same response today by the Cowboys front office. This time however it was Dez Bryant who learned he would not be offered a chance at a pay-cut. In addition he was being released by the Cowboys after 8 seasons. Business as usual right?
Bryant’s steep drop in production can be connected to so many things. To me, it started in 2015 when he broke his foot against the Giants. Dez was never the same after that. A wide receiver can’t do much without his feet. This injury lingered well past his surgery. In 2014 Dez posted over 1,300 yards and 16 TD’s. In 2015 he had 401 yards and 3 TD’s. 2016, 796 yards and 8 TD’s. Last season, he had an up-tick at 838 yards and 6 TD’s.
It has been 3 seasons since Dez Bryant posted his “Usual” numbers
Sound familiar? Emmitt hadn’t posted his “Usual” numbers in 3 years either after putting up epic numbers for seasons before. Numbers that afforded him big money in contract negotiations. But no matter who you are, no matter how much the fans love you. When you no longer produce to the level you are being payed, you will likely be cut.
The fan base is currently divided between this Dez Bryant decision
As a result of the decision here is the divide. Fans who wanted Dez to stay, and those that either wanted him gone. Either because of his drops in 2017, and overall under-performance, or those whom are supportive of the front office decisions in terms of our future.
It’s important to realize we are fans and have no ability to change the face of this organization, its personnel or anything regarding decision making. As fans, we have to understand this is a business before it is a game. As fans, we have to support our team as a whole if we want to call ourselves Dallas Cowboys fans, not just fans of a player. Fans of the Star!
Dez Bryant fans are not happy right now, neither are most Cowboys fans in general. It will take a while for most of us to get over this. It will take a die-hard Dez Bryant fan even longer to get over this. That is, of course, until they see him in a different uniform. Which he will no doubt be in very soon.
That’s how quickly things change in the NFL. If you can’t get used to these types of decisions being made, you are in for a long life of anxiety and sadness. The Dallas Cowboys are in the middle of a huge “Youth Movement”. This movement, while unpopular with many, is a way of life in the NFL.
Dallas has to look forward to the next few years. We will have to pay Dak and Zeke a huge amount of money if they perform to their 2016 abilities before their current “Bargain Priced” rookie contracts are up. Bryant’s is just another step to free up cap room for the future. Finally getting out of contracts that no longer help the team. The quicker we come to grips with the fact that this is a business, the quicker we can see that this move was “Business As Usual” for Mr. Jones.”