Dez Bryant Says Cowboys a Lock to Land Former Steelers Receiver

James Washington

Getty Images Steelers receiver James Washington.

Dez Bryant said he believes free agent receiver James Washington is heading to the Dallas Cowboys, giving the team a much-needed set of hands after they let go of Amari Cooper.

Bryant, a former All-Pro with the Cowboys, tweeted his “scoop” via Twitter on March 14.

Bryant has endorsed Washington, a fellow Oklahoma State University alumnus, in the past. In August 2021, he tweeted: “If you are a team and want a top tier WR trade for James Washington….. thank me later.”

Bryant’s tweets could represent something more than just a former player pushing for a younger player from his alma mater. Perhaps Bryant, who played for the Cowboys from 2010 to 2017, has inside information on Washington and his plans during free agency.

James Washington Saw Production Wane With Steelers

Washington, who will be 26 when the 2022 season starts, spent the first four seasons of his career in Pittsburgh but was never truly able to catch on. He had a career-high 44 catches for 735 yards in 2019, but his numbers fell off the past two years and he failed to top 500 yards again. Washington caught just 24 balls for 285 yards and two touchdowns last season. In August 2021, he requested that the team trade him, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Later that month, Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin told ESPN that Washington had never requested a trade, despite what unnamed sources reportedly had said.

In the Steelers’ offense, Washington played both outside and in the slot.

“I just feel like it’s making me a little bit more well-rounded,” Washington said in August of last season. “That way I can’t just be labeled as an outside receiver because then that may limit you to plays. If anybody goes down, I feel like I can just get in there and pick up the slack. But whatever that may be, I think it just helps me all around.”

Though it appeared he was more comfortable out wide, Washington could prove more of an asset playing in the slot if the Cowboys were to sign him, especially after Dallas wide receiver Michael Gallup recovers from the ACL tear he suffered at the end of the 2021 season. Gallup, whom the Cowboys re-signed to a five-year deal on March 13, underwent surgery in February and is expected to be ready to play by the beginning of the 2022 season, according to ESPN.

If Washington is not an option, the Cowboys could look to a veteran such as Jarvis Landry or Antonio Brown, who referenced Cowboys owner Jerry Jones during the March 8 episode of “The Pivot” podcast when asked a question about his future. With the 24th pick of the NFL Draft, the Cowboys also could target receivers such as Chris Olave and Treylon Burks.

Cowboys Have Dealt Amari Cooper to Browns

The Cowboys need some new faces in their wide receiver corps, with the team trading Amari Cooper to the Browns and seeing Cedrick Wilson Jr. sign with the Dolphins.

Cooper had 292 receptions for 3,893 yards and 27 touchdowns in 56 games with Dallas. Wilson came on strong last year with a career year, notching 45 catches for 602 yards and six touchdowns.

The Cowboys did lock in a piece of their future in Gallup, inking him to a five-year, $62.5 million deal. Gallup has notched 193 catches for 2,902 yards and 15 touchdowns in his career, including a 1,000-yard season in 2020. He was injured for a chunk of last season with a calf injury and then the torn ACL.

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