The Cowboys have had two great receivers, Drew Pearson and Michael Irvin, who wore No. 88. They have a receiver now, Dez Bryant, who wears No. 88 and has the talent to be great. But Pearson doesn’t think Bryant is living up to his talent.
After Bryant’s drops crippled the Cowboys’ offense on Monday night, Pearson said Bryant has a long way to go to play at the level that Cowboys fans are accustomed to from the No. 88.
“He’s not living up to the expectations that were placed on him by wearing that number,” Pearson told the Midland Reporter-Telegram. “Drew Pearson took it to the Ring of Honor level and Michael Irvin took it way beyond that to the Hall of Fame level. When Michael and I had a chance to talk to Dez when he came in his rookie year we told him, ‘Don’t do what Drew Pearson did in it. Don’t do what Michael did in it. Do more than that.’ I know that’s a lot to live up to, but what else is there? You live up to those expectations and people will cherish you for the rest of your life.”
Pearson also said the Cowboys’ offense is weaker than he ever remembers it from his days.
“We were never this stagnant,” Pearson said. “Throughout my career we averaged at least 28 points per game and there were seasons we averaged more than 30 points per game.”
Pearson is wrong about that: The Cowboys only averaged 28 or more points a game twice in Pearson’s 11 seasons, and they never averaged 30 points a game. So Pearson may be like a lot of older folks who remember how much better things were back in their day.
But Pearson’s broader point is correct: Bryant is not living up to his talent, or to the expectations of everyone in Dallas.