The Dallas Cowboys no longer wanted Dez Bryant, but someone else will. Right?
We would think, but the wait might be even longer after NFL.com posted Cowboys vice president of player personnel Will McClay offering at least one reason the team released the enigmatic receiver last month.
There is also the matter of money after Bryant signed a five-year, $70 million contract extension in the summer of 2015. The obvious hang up is that Bryant, who will turn 30 in November, isn’t worth the money. Following three straight seasons (2012-14) with at least 88 receptions and 1,200 receiving yards, Bryant has not caught more than 69 balls or amassed over 838 yards in any of the last three years.
Sure, Bryant played in all 16 games in 2017, but he failed to crack the 100-yard receiving mark in any of them and his season-high reception total was eight.
That said, perhaps the inevitable change of scenery will be good for Bryant, who has recorded over 500 receptions and 7,000 yards in eight seasons. Just where his next stop will be is far from clear cut, but here are three places he could end up:
Staying in state, Bryant would be an enticing option to help the Texans bounce back from a dismal 4-12 season. The team has the salary cap space to afford Bryant, who need not be the No. 1 option with DeAndre Hopkins holding down that role.
Then again, would Bryant be OK playing second fiddle? That’s a concern, but Deshaun Watson should welcome the opportunity of adding Bryant to an offense that also boasts another talented, if not fragile, receiver in Will Fuller.
Again, would there be enough balls to go around? But, Bryant paired with a star like Hopkins and a budding one in Watson, is intriguing more than anything else.
San Francisco 49ers
After winning their final five games with Jimmy Garoppolo at quarterback, the Niners have reason to feel good about the 2018 season. Adding Bryant to the mix would bump any expectations up a notch.
Like Houston, San Francisco can afford Bryant, who would be a major upgrade in the red zone. Marquise Goodwin and Pierre Garcon are serviceable receivers, but not really go-to guys–as Garcon once was. Rookie Dante Pettis has that Tyreek Hill vibe, but he’s yet to play a game.
Bryant makes sense going to another franchise with a rich history. And like Houston, his veteran presence, along with Garcon, might help a fledgling quarterback thrive.
Jamison Crowder, Josh Doctson and free agent signee Paul Richardson make for a decent receiving trio, but none has caught over 67 passes in a season. Plus, the only receiver the Redskins took in the draft was Mr. Irrelevant Trey Quinn from SMU.
Bryant, in a strange way, might even play the role of mentor to this group and could make Alex Smith’s transition as Washington quarterback a little easier.
These are just a few spots that seem to make sense for Bryant to land. Wherever he goes, the adventure will continue.
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