Originally Published: Jul 26, 2010 8:41 PM CDT
Ill readily admit that Im rooting for Dez Bryant. Who wouldnt? Tough childhood...football was a way out...trying to help his family. I want him to succeed just like I want Sam Bradford, Gerald McCoy and Zac Robinson to. But hes got to understand how things work or have someone explain to him how things work.
As I wrote in my Saturday blog, Dez was doing all of the right things. He signed his contract early, showed up to practice early and high-fived fans among other things.
But on Sunday he refused to take part in the rookie ritual of carrying the pads of veteran receiver Roy Williams. Dez and Williams are engaged in a battle for the Cowboys number two receiver spot behind Miles Austin. I can understand there being some competitive animosity. That being said, suck it up and carry the pads.
Did his agent Eugene Parker, or someone in his entourage not explain to Dez that there is something called rookie hazing? Its a right of passage. Some players even enjoy being hazed and take it as a sign that they have arrived. Taking part is a sign to your fellow players that you are willing to pay your dues in order to be a part of the team.
Dont think for a moment that the Cowboy veterans will let this misdeed will go unpunished. Dez might should prepare himself to wake up taped naked to a goal post or find his car moved from its spot in the parking lot and replaced by a 1978 Ford Pinto.
This is the quote from Dez Bryant that stuck out to me: "Im here to try to help with a championship, not carry someones pads. Im saying that out of no disrespect to (anyone)."
But thats just it Dez. By refusing to take part in an NFL tradition, you are disrespecting the thousands of players who did so before you.
Dez slipped in the NFL draft because of questions about his character. He slipped because teams feared that Dez might do something like what he did Sunday at training camp.
Now its time for him to pick up the pads and prove to them they were wrong.