Taking to Twitter on Wednesday, the former Dallas Cowboys‘ star receiver revealed his intention to return to the sport, with his tentative plan being to sign before Thanksgiving.
“I’m not trying to go nowhere and be a starter on a team I want to contribute because I know I will be able too… I’m feeling good… in two weeks I’m going to reach out to teams and see what happens…. let’s go X,” Bryant tweeted.
The announcement comes less than a month after Bryant shared a series of training videos that featured the 31-year-old running routes, snagging balls, and engaging in exercises with noted receivers coach David Robinson, who’s instructed the likes of Antonio Brown and Emmanuel Sanders.
After eight seasons, over 7,400 receiving yards and 73 touchdowns with the organization, Bryant was dumped by Dallas in April 2018, ending an era of overwhelming if controversial dominance.
Bryant landed a one-year contract from the New Orleans Saints last November but tore his Achilles’ tendon just two days after touching pen to paper. Despite drawing zero interest since the injury, Bryant had no plans to retire and instead ramped up for a professional comeback.
This aligned with what Bryant told NFL Network’s Jane Slater in August, that he’d circled mid-October or thereabouts to begin talking shop with any interested parties.
“I’m way better than I was before I went to the Saints last year,” he said. “Mid-October is when I’m going to be trying to get back in the league.”
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Dez Detailed ‘Unfair’ Cowboys Release
If or when Bryant does get a second lease on his football life, it more than likely won’t transpire in North Texas. As it pertained to last year’s split from the Cowboys, Bryant spilled all the beans during an August appearance on the ThomaHawk Show, a podcast hosted by former NFLers Joe Thomas and Andrew Hawkins. The legendary wideout gave a brutally honest explanation of why he’s no longer donning the silver and blue.
To hear Bryant tell it, his messy breakup with Jerry Jones affected him so deeply, it contributed to the three-time Pro Bowler’s decision to rebuff a post-Cowboys offer from the Baltimore Ravens.
“I wasn’t in the right state of mind to even be trying to play football. I didn’t like how my relationship ended with the Dallas Cowboys,” he said. “I felt like a lot of things went on in that organization that wasn’t fair. I think it was a lot of political stuff that was going on. I’m the type of guy that voices my opinion, but I do all of the research before I voice my opinion. I just felt like it was too strong. It might have rubbed some of the guys the wrong way, but if they did their research, they would see that it does make sense. It was just one of those things — my opinion versus theirs — and it was: should we have him here or should we not have him here? I was voted that I shouldn’t be there. It kind of bothered me, because I actually felt like I really stood for those guys, I really cared for those guys, especially the rookie guys that came in. A lot of guys into the hazing, I was never into that. I would like a rookie to come in and damn near feel like a vet. I felt like I had done a great job with amping guys on the field and off the field. It was real genuine things. That would be the most disturbing part for me, not being there, because I took that serious more than I feel like any guy inside of that locker room.”
Potential Fits for Bryant
Dez’s long-awaited return — the hours he’s slaved getting his body back in shape, his mind in the proper space — isn’t culminating with, say, an inept franchise like the New York Jets. If he’s going to sign, it’ll be with a club fighting for a playoff spot hampered by a glaring need at WR.
A few dots to connect to Bryant include the 6-2 Buffalo Bills, the 7-2 Green Bay Packers, and the 5-4 Philadelphia Eagles, whom the Cowboys will see again on Dec. 22.
Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL