When the NFL released the audio of Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant telling Tony Romo, “We’re the best in the NFL,” it was taken by some as proof that Bryant was nothing but positive in his interactions with teammates on the sideline on Sunday. But that’s not necessarily the case.
The NFL has not released the audio of Bryant’s interactions with Jason Witten or DeMarcus Ware, and Ware told the Fort Worth Star Telegram today that his own discussion with Bryant was heated. Although Ware stressed that he likes Bryant and considers him a great teammate, he also said he had to calm Bryant down late in the game.
“To get respect, you’ve got to give respect to others,” Ware said. “Me and Dez, we’re really close to each other, and he’s a great dude, a great player. Sometimes things get heated on the sideline because we’re competitors. He’s a great competitor. There’s a time and place for everything. Everything is behind us now, and it’s on to the Vikings.”
Ware said he was trying to make Bryant focus on the game while Bryant was ranting and raving on the sideline after Matthew Stafford gave the Lions a go-ahead touchdown with 12 seconds left.
“There’s always a time and place – 12 seconds left in the game, knowing how important you are in the game; that’s not the place,” Ware said. “There’s always a time to approach the situation and approach it the right way. . . . The thing is, you’ve got to carry things a certain way, do things a certain way. Twelve seconds left in the game, you got an opportunity to win. You go at it as such.”
Ware is an older veteran player who was providing some leadership on the sideline, but Bryant shouldn’t need to be told that with 12 seconds left, it’s time to focus on the next offensive play, not to scream at teammates.