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dez bryant holdout | The DC Times

The DC Times

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No Holdout: Dez Bryant Deal Complete

The Cowboys are reporting that they have agreed to terms on a contract with rookie wide receiver Dez Bryant.  Bryant becomes the first player in the first-round to finish a deal, despite widespread speculation that he would hold out, perhaps for an extended period of time.

Of course, Dallas Cowboys Times readers weren’t worried.  Two weeks ago, we gave you five reasons Bryant wouldn’t hold out.  One of the primary reasons provided was that the Cowboys have a great relationship with Bryant’s agent Eugene Parker.  Parker has represented Deion Sanders, Felix Jones, and Tashard Choice, among others.  He was also likely eager to show he can strike a deal quickly after advising Michael Crabtree through a lengthy holdout last season.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter is reporting the deal is worth $11.8 million over five years, including $8.5 million guaranteed.  Language of the deal is still being worked out, but the overall worth and guaranteed money is about the same as Percy Harvin’s deal last season.  Harvin was the 22nd overall pick, while Bryant went No. 24 overall.

The Cowboys must still sign second-round pick Sean Lee, although that deal figures to be completed by tomorrow.


Cowboys News and Notes: 7/19/10 (Emmitt Smith Hall of Fame Induction)

We aren’t sure who in particular created this list, but wow.  Bob Lilly, Michael Irvin, Roger Staubach, and Tom Landry ranked ahead of Emmitt.

Part-time Dallas Cowboys Times correspondent Dave Kraft asked Emmitt a few questions, including about his current workout plan.  For those interested, Emmitt said, “I just started to get into P90X.”

This is earlier than normal for the ‘Boys due to their extra preseason game (and resulting extra week of training camp).  We previously listed five reasons Bryant won’t hold out.

“AOA” is a small school prospect (Indiana of Pennsylvania) who we have had the privilege of watching play live a few times.  He is an incredible return man who will start out at free safety in Dallas.

We’ll have a similar list out shortly.  The field goal kicking position heads their list and will be quite high on ours as well.

If a team is truly only as good as its weakest link, then overpaying for elite players (and thus being forced to have numerous minimum salary players) is a poor strategy.  Shockingly, Dallas has just two players who are paid in the top 10 at their position.

Watkins lists safety Barry Church, defensive end Marcus Dixon, safety Michael Hamlin, and wide receiver Jesse Holley as players to watch.  We are currently projecting the first three players to make the 53-man roster.


Top Five Reasons Dez Bryant Will NOT Hold Out

There has been a lot of recent talk about the possibility of Cowboys rookie receiver Dez Bryant holding out for an extended period of time.  Bryant was the 24th overall selection in this year’s draft, but most would agree he is far greater than the 24th most talented player. 

The Cowboys have made it clear they are not willing to pay Bryant much more than his draft slot dictates, although Bryant’s agent will likely seek extra money.  Nonetheless, there are a variety of reasons Bryant will not hold out for an extended period of time:

1.  The presence of Miles Austin & Co. gives lessens Bryant’s leverage.

Make no mistake about it: Dez Bryant will be a major component of the Cowboys’ offense in 2010 and for years to come.  However, Bryant was still a value pick.  Not many people (including us) thought Dallas would select a wide receiver so early.  They probably would have been fine at the position without Bryant, but his talent was too exceeding to pass up.

With Austin, the Cowboys have a legitimate No. 1 receiver.  The Cowboys would love to get Bryant signed as quickly as possible, but they are in no dire need–from a personnel standpoint–to do so (and Bryant knows it).

2.  The Cowboys have a great relationship with Bryant’s agent, Eugene Parker.

The Cowboys have worked with Parker in the past with much success.  Yes, Parker was Michael Crabtree’s agent when he staged a lengthy holdout last season, but Bryant’s situation is completely different.

First, the difference between top five money (which Crabtree was seeking) and top 10 money is vast–much greater than the difference in compensation for which Bryant & Parker will initially be searching and what Dallas will offer.

Secondly, no matter what you may hear, Bryant is less of a diva than Crabtree.  Crabtree’s primary focus was money.  Bryant’s is playing football.

3. Bryant will want to avoid the negative publicity of a holdout.

He has already been criticized over character concerns such as a poor work ethic and lack of ideal attitude toward football (both of which are unfounded).  These qualms were certainly a major factor in why he dropped in the first round of the draft.

Bryant knows there are a ton of people, some even Dallas fans, who are still on the fence regarding his future.  He has all the talent in the world, but is he mentally and emotionally ready for the spotlight?  He’ll want to prove that is the case.

4.  Bryant is itching to get on the field.

The Oklahoma State product has not played football in nearly a year after being suspended for the entire 2009 season by the NCAA.  Further, Bryant has something to prove.  He knows he is a top talent and he is disappointed that he dropped so far in the draft (despite apparently being ecstatic about playing in Dallas).  The kid wants to prove everyone wrong, and he wants to do so as soon as possible.

5.  The ‘Boys will have an extra week to work out a deal.

The Cowboys play in the Hall of Fame game (the first preseason game) this season.  Thus, they are able to open camp earlier than any other team.

Dallas is generally one of the last teams to begin signing draft picks, with talks usually heating up the week prior to training camp.  With an extra week of practice, the Cowboys and Bryant have more time to hammer out a deal.  Even a week-long stalemate would put the Cowboys in the same position they would be in had they not been assigned to play in the Hall of Fame game.

While Bryant probably won’t be signed by the very beginning of camp, don’t expect his “holdout” to last more than a few days.


Cowboys News and Notes 7/2/10: Will Dez Bryant Hold Out?

We’d actually reverse this.  While there is certainly a lot of confidence in Free and Ball, the Cowboys must at least be somewhat worried about whether the two players’ inexperience will come back to bite them.  On the flip side, the effect of Barber’s potential decline is weakened by the presence of Felix Jones and Tashard Choice, i.e. Barber’s play matters less than that of Free or Ball.  Further, while kicker is a very important position, the variance among kickers from season to season makes Buehler’s presence less risky.

We’d have to disagree.  Bryant will likely be absent for the first few practices of training camp, but that is fairly standard with the Cowboys’ first-rounders.  Having already been scrutinized a great deal, Bryant (and the Cowboys) will probably do everything possible to avoid the stress and bad press of a long holdout.  And as if you haven’t watched enough videos of Bryant, here is another.

Terence Newman, Mike Jenkins, and Orlando Scandrick are locks.  We recently projected Bryan McCann to be the fourth guy (click here for our roster projections), switching from Cletis Gordon.  Gordon offers kick return ability, but those duties may now belong to rookies Dez Bryant and Akwasi Owusu-Ansah.  Either way, the presence of Alan Ball and AOA makes us believe Dallas will only retain four cornerbacks.

Great Story on Robert Brewster

Orlando Scandrick is a talented nickel cornerback, but he was picked on a bit last season.  We gave him a “C” overall grade but we are anticipating a bounce-back year from him.  This, combined with the coverage ability of Alan Ball, means the defense’s numbers against four and five-receiver sets should improve a bit in 2010.

If Ball can improve upon his poor missed tackle percentage, he will do well enough in coverage to be an upgrade over Ken Hamlin.

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