So you’ve probably heard by now that Dez Bryant has been released by the Dallas Cowboys. He met with Jerry Jones this morning, which ended after about five minutes, and that was the end of Bryant’s Dallas Cowboys career. We’ve been speculating where Dez may end up if he was released throughout the entire offseason so far, but now it’s real. Where will Dez Bryant play next season? I’ve listed some potential landing spots I believe to be good fits for the now former Dallas Cowboys receiver.
According to Dallas Cowboys writer Mickey Spagnola, Dez Bryant said “I’ll see you guys twice this year” as he walked out of his meeting with the Cowboys. Obviously that implies he’s signing with an NFC East team. Whether that’s true or not, we’ll have to wait and see, but it wouldn’t come as a surprise to me at all. Several former Cowboys players have signed with NFC East rivals after being released by or not resigning with Dallas. The most notable player to do this was DeMarco Murray a few years ago when he signed with the Philadelphia Eagles. Other former Cowboys such as Orlando Scandrick (Signed with Redskins this offseason), Jason Hatcher (Signed with Redskins), and Dwayne Harris (Signed with Giants) are a few other notable names to sign with NFC East rivals.
Out of the Giants, Eagles, and Redskins, I’d say the team least likely to sign Dez would be the Giants. They still need to sign Odell Beckham, and there’s no way they can afford to pay Dez too if they do that. I won’t rule out Dez in a Giants uniform though. If they trade Odell, signing Dez becomes a lot more likely. The Eagles and Redskins are both pretty likely. Washington has a need at receiver and they have money to pay Dez. Dez Bryant and Josh Norman on the same team would be interesting. The Eagles don’t necessarily need a receiver, but signing Dez would only bolster what they already have. If the Eagles winning the Super Bowl wasn’t enough to frustrate Cowboys fans, them getting Bryant would push them over the edge.
Green Bay Packers
I never thought this would be a possibility after Dez Bryant’s famous “catch” that was ruled incomplete against the Packers. Aaron Rodgers beat the Cowboys in the playoffs then, and then beat them again a couple years later in the playoffs. After releasing Jordy Nelson this offseason, the Packers are in need of another receiver. Just thinking about what Dez and Rodgers could do is scary. The back shoulder throw in the end zone would be too easy for these two to complete. With a quarterback like Rodgers, this could be the perfect spot for Dez to revive his career.
Joe Flacco needs weapons and the Ravens are trying to add another receiver. Baltimore has taken a chance on veteran wide receivers in the past, so I think they’d be willing to do it again. This offense needs to add scoring threats. Dez may not be the downfield target he once was, but he’s still a big body who excels in the red zone. Bryant would make Flacco’s job a lot easier when it comes to throwing touchdowns.
After losing Allen Robinson in free agency, the Jaguars lack a number one wide receiver. Jacksonville has also become an enticing free agency destination for free agents because they came within a game of the Super Bowl last season. Maybe going against one of the best defense’s in the NFL every day would help Dez become a better receiver. Jacksonville also lost their 88 (Allen Hurns) to the Dallas Cowboys, so why not swap him for a new 88?
New England Patriots
This has potential to be another Randy Moss situation for the Patriots, but it also has potential to be a disaster. If Dez wants a more long term destination, New England is not where he wants to go. He could be released at any moment if he doesn’t perform. On the other hand, if Dez can produce enough to stick around, he’ll have a real chance to win a Super Bowl. If the Patriots show interest in Dez, he has to consider it. Who wouldn’t want to play with one of the best quarterbacks to ever play the game?
New Orleans Saints
Speaking of best quarterbacks to play the game, Drew Brees fits right in there. New Orleans has a decent receiving group right now, but they’re looking for a better compliment to Michael Thomas. The Saints love to throw the ball, and Brees spreads it around maybe better than anyone. Dez would have a lot of opportunity here. Michael Thomas and Dez Bryant in the red zone with Brees throwing the ball would be a nightmare for any defense.
Other Potential Landing Spots
San Fransisco 49ers
There are a lot of NFL teams looking for a receiver this offseason, so your guess is as good as mine when it comes to where Bryant will land. If I had to pick, I’m going with an NFC East team. Going to a division rival seems to be what former Cowboys players do when they have a bad experience with the team. Instead of trying to figure out how to get Bryant to be more productive, now they’re going to be worried about how to stop him from being more productive.