The Dallas Cowboys made a shocking move on Friday when they released their top wide receiver, Dez Bryant, instead of looking to trade the former star. As a result, the Cowboys have no clear number one receiver, and Bryant is angry and wants to join one of the Cowboys’ top rivals. Stuck in the middle is quarterback Dak Prescott, and he met with reporters about the big Dallas offseason move. ESPN reported that Prescott admitted that replacing Bryant would be very difficult, but he believed that the Cowboys had a plan and would find a replacement either on their team or from the outside before the 2018 NFL season begins.
Dallas Cowboys Cut Dez Bryant
The Dallas Cowboys not only waived Dez Bryant on Friday, but they did it without offering him a chance to take a pay cut to remain with the team. Jerry Jones met with Bryant for 20 minutes and then released him. They also chose not to make him a post-June 1 cut. This means that Dallas will save $8.5 million this season in salary cap money.
Bryant told ESPN in an interview that he believes that people within the Cowboys’ organization were against him and said “Garrett guys” on the team pushed him out of Dallas. He also took to Twitter to let fans know that he didn’t want to leave.
“Cowboy nation I need you to know this wasn’t my decision,” Bryant wrote. He then said that Dallas is forever “in my heart.”
Bryant then said that he was interested in possibly joining another NFC East team — making it sound like he wants to try to punish the Cowboys for releasing him.
The Cowboys Holdover Receivers
Dak Prescott was working out with his teammates when he learned that the Dallas Cowboys released Dez Bryant. He called Bryant a “talented guy” and said he would be missed.
In 2017, Bryant had a down year, with 69 receptions for 839 yards and six touchdowns. It was also the first year since 2011 that he did not have a 100-yard game. He was still the Cowboys leading receiver.
Returning next season is Terrance Williams, who finished 2017 with 53 catches for 568 yards and no touchdowns. When Bryant was out with injuries, Williams was not able to prove himself a reliable replacement as a number one receiver.
Cole Beasley (36 receptions, 314 yards, four touchdowns) is an undersized slot receiver and is also not a number one target. Dallas let Brice Butler go previously in the offseason.
The New Dallas Cowboys Receivers
There are also two newcomers in the Dallas Cowboys’ wide receiver ranks, possibly foreshadowing the release of Dez Bryant. Allen Hurns and Deonte Thompson both signed with Dallas as free agents.
Allen Hurns is a former member of the Jacksonville Jaguars. In four seasons in Jacksonville, Hurns had 189 receptions for 2,669 yards and 21 touchdowns. His best season came in 2015 when he caught 64 balls for 1,031 yards and 10 touchdowns. That was his only 100-yard season.
Deonte Thompson is a five-year receiver. He played with the Baltimore Ravens, Chicago Bears, and Buffalo Bills. He has 77 receptions in his career for 1,032 yards and four touchdowns.
Dak Prescott also said that the Dallas Cowboys are not finished adding pieces at wide receiver yet, saying “I’m sure we’re going to go after guys in the draft and free agency.”
According to ESPN, the Dallas Cowboys have spoken with all the top wide receivers in this year’s NFL Draft class, including James Washington (Oklahoma State), Courtland Sutton (SMU), D.J. Moore (Maryland), and Calvin Ridley (Alabama). The Cowboys have the 19th pick in the 2018 NFL Draft.