Throw up the X: The Return of Dez Bryant
Throw up the X. Dez Bryant is back in the NFL once again.
The Baltimore Ravens announced that Dez Bryant was officially signed to the the 53 man roster.
Bryant’s hard work and determination has not gone unseen, and the grind has been intense the past couple of years for Bryant.
Bryant worked out for the Ravens in August, but left without a contract because of his conditioning. Two months later, Bryant returned for a second workout and earned a spot on the Ravens practice squad.
After working out on the scout team for just two weeks, Bryant was elevated for Baltimore’s game against the Indianapolis Colts for his Ravens debut. The Ravens obviously did not think Bryant was ready to play as he only was on the field for a total of two plays.
Bryant was more involved in the offense after being promoted for the game against the Tennessee Titans. The veteran receiver led the Ravens wide receivers with four receptions in the OT loss.
Not only has all of Baltimore’s receivers struggled this season, previous NFL MVP Lamar Jackson has been underperforming and is now missing a big matchup against the Steelers due to COVID-19. Amid Baltimore’s coronavirus outbreak, Bryant became a member of the Ravens as the organization continues to reshuffle their roster. The Ravens have placed 22 total players on the COVID reserve list in just this past week.
The once Dallas Cowboy provides much needed size and skill to a Baltimore offense that ranks a whopping 31st in the NFL.
It’s been quite a long time since Dez Bryant has been discussed in terms of a player since his exit in 2017. Now we’ll take a look back at how Bryant got to this point.
Dez Bryant’s final season with the Cowboys was 2017 in an unproductive season to forget. Bryant caught 69 passes and reeled in six touchdowns as one of the Cowboys highest paid players at the time.
The following April, Bryant met with owner Jerry Jones. Shortly after the meeting, the Dallas organization decided releasing Bryant was in the best interest of the organization, and Dez professionally.
Bryant could have declined a pay cut resulting in the release, as his cap hit was set at $16.5 million for both the 2018 and 2019 seasons.
After the Cowboys released Bryant, he was set to officially become a free agent and hopefully join a playoff contender. After seven long unemployed months, the Saints decided to bring in Bryant for a workout, ending in a contract. Unfortunately, two days after signing with New Orleans, Bryant tore his Achilles tendon, keeping him out a minimum of 10-12 months.
The Saints and Bryant had mutual interest of a reunion after a full recovery, but no deal was ever discussed after the injury.
In 2019, Bryant voiced in interest in bringing the NFL and that he was fully healthy and ready to play. No teams called, but Bryant continued his fight back to the league.
As October came, the Ravens decided to bring Bryant onto their practice squad during Baltimore’s Week 7 bye, allowing Bryant to go through the NFL’s COVID-19 protocols and get acclimated with the offense.
Baltimore utiliizes a run-heavy offense led by Jackson and a brigade of running backs. The Ravens plan to use Bryant’s size in both the run and pass game in their fight for a division win.
Bryant provides a big target for the Ravens moving forward, and for cheap too. The Ravens were a team willing to let Bryant play NFL football again, and Bryant is not looking back.
Bryant’s presence is by no means an elite move or a signing that favorites Baltimore in the AFC North, but a signing of a veteran that is willing to give it his all to win.
Over the career of Dez Bryant, the receiver has racked up a total of 7487 receiving yards and 73 touchdowns. Bryant has 535 receptions as well.
The Ravens are 6-2 behind the undefeated Pittsburgh Steelers in the division, signing Bryant for much needed receiving help.
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