“Nothing against Andy dalton because I think he’s a great player..but the cowboys are extremely out of line… Pay Dak… I watched the cowboys pay Tony Twice once without a winning rec… I guess the cowboys viewing the QB position a plug in piece because of the dominant offense,” Bryant tweeted Saturday night.
The above was triggered by Dallas’ surprising decision to bring aboard the former Bengals starting quarterback, who inked a one-year, $7 million contract with $3 million guaranteed.
Meanwhile, Dak Prescott, the Cowboys’ franchise-tagged incumbent, is left at the bargaining table. He’s yet to sign his $31.4 million tag for 2020 as the sides continue haggling over the “right number.” However, as of this writing, they’re no closer to an agreement than they were in March. Or January. Or September.
Bryant, who’s on record as supporting Prescott’s alleged $40 million annual desire, reaffirmed Saturday that “Dak should have got paid soon as the season was over.” That opinion doesn’t change even if Dalton — a “good QB” — was added merely to be Prescott’s backup.
“The cowboys offense can be special… you can place anybody in that offense if they screw up with that much talent on the field they don’t deserve to play QB.. But Dak is the guy for the position… he earned that,” Bryant tweeted.
By all accounts, the Cowboys do envision Dalton, a three-time Pro Bowler, as an ideal clipboard-holder. And the feeling’s mutual; he reportedly turned down an offer from the Steelers to learn under Prescott and new Cowboys head coach Mike McCarthy. He’s a cheap yet experienced No. 2 joining a contending club, no different than Jameis Winston landing in New Orleans.
But whether Dallas intended to buy back some leverage from Prescott, the result is the same. So is the message: We’ll cut a check, small as it may be, to a 32-year-old castoff before we cave to our homegrown 26-year-old, who may or may not deserve to become the sport’s highest-paid player.
That Prescott and the Cowboys still have time to work out a megadeal — the deadline is July 15 — is immaterial to his ex-teammate.
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Dez Reacts Strongly to Lamb Wearing No. 88
In other news, Bryant took the high road after CeeDee Lamb took his digits. Shortly after it was revealed the prized rookie receiver will be rocking No. 88 as a Cowboy, the veteran wideout provided powerfully encouraging thoughts, rubber-stamping Lamb’s (team-assisted) decision.
“I can’t feel no way but be supportive of lamb and the rest of these young stars that’s entering the league.. I believe it’s my job to help them succeed as much on and off the field,” Bryant tweeted Thursday.
Lamb becomes only the 12th player in franchise history to don No. 88, and the first since Dez, who last played for Dallas in 2017. The number has been associated with some of the greatest players in team and league lore, including Hall of Fame WR Michael Irvin and Ring of Honor inductee Drew Pearson.
“I love this kid. I ain’t talking about I like this kid, I love this kid,” Irvin said of Lamb on ESPN’s First Take on Friday, via The Athletic. “I usually call all the young wide receivers; before I could do that, CeeDee called me. We’ve had multiple conversations. I love the kid. He’s going to be exactly what Dallas needs … Amari Cooper is a No. 1 (wide receiver). CeeDee Lamb is most definitely a No. 1. This dude is a combination of all three of those 88s. He can play outside and he can make those Hail Mary type plays like Drew Pearson. He can go up in the air and get the ball like Dez Bryant. And he’s a route-tree expert like Michael Irvin. This kid has production in the slot and out wide. He’s going to be the No. 1 right there with Amari Cooper. (The Cowboys) are playing with two No. 1 receivers because 88 is only a No. 1.”
Follow Zack Kelberman on Twitter: @KelbermanNFL