When your No. 1 receiver’s career average numbers are 73 catches for 1,026 yards and 10 touchdowns per season, it’s easy to see why any team would want to lock him down long-term.
The player I’m referring to is none other than Dallas Cowboys Pro Bowl wide receiver Dez Bryant. Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that he is in the final year of his rookie contract and in need of a very much deserved contract extension, in my opinion. An extension, which might come before the start of the 2014 NFL season according to Cowboys executive vice president Stephen Jones.
“We’re certainly taking a long look at that,” Jones said. “As we do with any great player in our organization, who’s nearing the end of a contract, we start to look at it and see how we might structure something going forward.”
Something that not many are talking about, in regards to extending Bryant, are his back problems. In December 2013, Bryant’s back spasms were so bad that he was forced to spend a night in the hospital. If you recall, there was even talk about Bryant possibly having a bulging or herniated disc.
I’m sure that the Cowboys will do their homework on the issue, but I thought I’d bring it to the forefront for those who want to mortgage AT&T Stadium to keep Bryant under contract.
I believe that Bryant is in for a huge payday, and I can’t imagine a scenario where he doesn’t stay in Dallas, but I maintain that the Cowboys should exercise caution before making an absurd financial commitment to Bryant.
Before Bryant, Miles Austin was putting up video game type numbers, and before Austin, Terrell Owens was doing it. So, while I do think that Bryant is one of the league’s best, I don’t think it’s coincidence that others have had similar success in the Cowboys’ offensive system; simply meaning that while one guy might not be able to replace Bryant’s production, it doesn’t mean that his production is irreplaceable. I’ve seen the New England Patriots and Green Bay Packers do it a bunch of times with receivers deemed irreplaceable.
Another thing to consider is that the Cowboys have very little cap room, and must also find a way to keep Pro Bowl left tackle Tyron Smith under contract. If push comes to shove, and I hope it doesn’t, I’d re-sign my star left tackle before I re-sign my star wide receiver.