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Dez Bryant was “shocked” by penalty for removing his helmet


Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant never knew that a player who takes off his helmet when complaining to an official is automatically flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct. Until he found out the hard way on Sunday.

Bryant was flagged for offensive pass interference against the Vikings, and when he approached referee Jeff Triplette to question the call, he took off his helmet. Bryant said he wasn’t trying to get in Triplette’s face and had no idea that he would be penalized for taking his helmet off.

“I wasn’t angry at the ref,” Bryant told the Dallas Morning News. “I was trying to see what the call was. I thought they called pass interference on the defense. When I was trying to come out of my break, the guy was tugging on me a little bit and I was trying to break away from it. He threw the flag and the whole time I’m thinking it’s a flag on [Minnesota]. Then I took my helmet off and I didn’t know that that was a penalty. I was kind of shocked and then I heard the ref say, ‘He took his helmet off.’ I know now not to take my helmet off. If you go back and look at the play, you’ll see I’m shocked. I’m confused.”

Bryant may not have known that’s a penalty, but it is: When a player takes off his helmet to argue a call, he gets flagged. Period.

But when asked why he took his helmet off, Bryant said he just wanted to make sure Triplette could understand him when he was asking about the flag.

“So he could see me clear,” Bryant said. “I took my helmet off so I could tell him. I didn’t know it was a flag because the play was over with. I’ll learn from it.”

The Cowboys’ coaches may want to sit down with Bryant for a chat about other rules, so that he doesn’t have to learn anything else by getting a 15-yard penalty.

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87 Responses to “Dez Bryant was “shocked” by penalty for removing his helmet”
  1. logicalvoicesays says: Nov 4, 2013 11:20 AM

    Meanwhile, in Washington, the best WR in the NFL not named Calvin Johnson caught 7 balls for 172 yards in Pierre Garcon. #BurgundyandGoldstandard

  2. golforepar says: Nov 4, 2013 11:20 AM

    It seems someone needs to read Bryant the rules!

  3. eaglesnd18 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:20 AM

    He’s still mad that Calvin is far superior than him.

  4. howiefeltersnatch says: Nov 4, 2013 11:21 AM

    Every team needs to show their players the replay of the last two minutes from that Browns/Chiefs season opener from back yonder.

  5. doctorrustbelt says: Nov 4, 2013 11:21 AM

    Box of rocks.

  6. glenuendo says: Nov 4, 2013 11:23 AM

    I can understand why he was shocked. He was just trying to be positive.

  7. ghostofgilchrist says: Nov 4, 2013 11:23 AM

    But I’m just a soul who’s intentions are good, oh Lord, please don’t let me be misunderstood

  8. thinredline69 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:23 AM

    Dez Bryant epitomizes class and maturity…and if you believe that you can go ahead and bank on the Cowboys representing the NFC in SB XLVIII.

  9. hornbuckle says: Nov 4, 2013 11:24 AM

    D I V A

  10. cajunaise says: Nov 4, 2013 11:24 AM

    Congrats, Dez Bryant: you’re officially the last person on the planet to learn that rule.

  11. jsticky870 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:24 AM

    I want to say the media is attacking Dez so bad, but the things he is saying/doing are so ridiculous that he is making their job easy as pie.

  12. harrycanyon says: Nov 4, 2013 11:24 AM

    Imagine that. Dez ignorant of something. It’s amazing how many rules somes of these guys don’t know exist.

  13. mvp43 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:26 AM

    He should be shocked that his team barely beat a high school team.

  14. bpayton52 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:27 AM

    meanwhile back in reality the cowboys are leading the division and dez has more yards and tds than all redskin wideouts combined

  15. cunninghampeetemcnabbvick says: Nov 4, 2013 11:27 AM

    Dez is still young. He’ll learn from it and move on.

  16. norseyapper says: Nov 4, 2013 11:28 AM

    Sure Dez…you only took your helmet off to aid the communication process, not because you were angry, agitated, aggressive, or asinine.

    Unless any of us saw the play and your reaction, in which case all of the above apply.

  17. kirksav says: Nov 4, 2013 11:28 AM

    This is the second week in a row this assclown has been “misunderstood”. You took your helmet off so the ref could see your face when you were probably berating him. Pretty soon this “I’m just a misunderstood teddy bear” act is going to get old. Oh wait. It’s already old.

    The good news for Dez is that the Cowboys reward this type of behaviour and will give him a 4 year $395,000,000 fully guaranteed contract because he is the product of Michael Irvin and Calvin Johnson having a lovechild named Dez.

  18. commonsenseisnotcmonman says: Nov 4, 2013 11:30 AM

    howiefeltersnatch says: Nov 4, 2013 11:21 AM

    Every team needs to show their players the replay of the last two minutes from that Browns/Chiefs season opener from back yonder.

    I get what you are saying, however, that play (2002 week 1) Rudd took his helmet off while the play was still going on and tossed it in the air.

    Slightly different circumstance here, even though the lesson is the same.

  19. dexterismyhero says: Nov 4, 2013 11:30 AM

    He can ask McNabb about the OT rules also!!!! Guarantee he doesn’t them either.

  20. bmack1224 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:30 AM

    Dez was Trynna show off his Hair Cut.. But the Mo-Hawk we t outta style in 08

  21. harrisonhits2 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:33 AM

    Once again a supposed professional shows he doesn’t even know all the basic rules of the game.


  22. granadafan says: Nov 4, 2013 11:33 AM

    Perception: I wasn’t angry.

    Reality: Video evidence shows that Bryant was practically frothing with a snarl on his face was screaming at the ref.

    Oh wait, he was just trying to stay positive and “encourage” the ref. Got it.

  23. dave4nyfg says: Nov 4, 2013 11:36 AM

    logicalvoicesays says:
    Nov 4, 2013 11:20 AM
    Meanwhile, in Washington, the best WR in the NFL not named Calvin Johnson caught 7 balls for 172 yards in Pierre Garcon. #BurgundyandGoldstandard


    Sigh, why can’t i just ignore your continued trolling. Anyways, while it pains me to say it as a Giants fan, maybe you could argue that Garcon is having a better year than Victor, but that is argument over 3rd best receiver in the sub-par NFC East this season (let alone the league).

  24. sterling7 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:36 AM

    As a Viking 4life since 1968 Bryant would have to remove his helmet about 36 times in that game in order for the Vikings to have a chance to win!

  25. lilpuppy says: Nov 4, 2013 11:38 AM

    c’mon he was just showing the ref his “passion” FOR THE GAME

  26. rcali says: Nov 4, 2013 11:38 AM

    To be fair, both his coach and owner condon his onfield actions so there should be no surprise internally in Cowboy land.

  27. piscataquis007 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:40 AM

    This guy is another disappointing example of an athletic, talented, body housing the mind of a spoiled child.

  28. vmannj says: Nov 4, 2013 11:40 AM

    What’s worse, a WR that takes off his helmet, or a QB who actually costs his team a game (Andy Dalton) because he doesn’t know the rules of overtime and how a safety is scored?

    I was at the game yesterday. Seeing Jeff Triplette in persone just confirmed to me everything I’ve heard that he is, in fact, the worst ref in football. How do you put extra time back on the clock after three consecutive plays at the end of the game?

  29. stevent92 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:40 AM

    Updated Report: Bryant has just been informed by the league office that officials also flag for “holding” an opposing ballplayer when engaged in contact.

    No word yet on whether Dez has been filled-in on the latest “pass interference” phenomenon that refs are starting to look for in the passing game.

  30. joetoronto says: Nov 4, 2013 11:41 AM

    He has so much passion that it knocked the helmet right off his head.

    It’s not his fault that he’s completely full of it.

  31. beardinals says: Nov 4, 2013 11:43 AM

    Dude probably barely reads the playbook, let alone the rule book. #survivingontalentalone.

  32. bengalsucker says: Nov 4, 2013 11:43 AM

    So T.O. v3.0 continues to show us how stupid he is. We’ll see him in 5 years doing push-ups in his driveway to convince a team to sign him. Stay classy Dez!

  33. ma5terbla5t3r says: Nov 4, 2013 11:44 AM

    Still better than Calvin “Microtron” Johnson.

  34. Suck for the Duck says: Nov 4, 2013 11:46 AM

    I knew the rule and I don’t even get paid millions of dollars to know that rule as part of my job.

  35. charliereno says: Nov 4, 2013 11:52 AM

    Standard operating procedure for those lacking maturity: when held accountable, play stupid.

  36. murraysons says: Nov 4, 2013 11:52 AM

    Meanwhile in Washington, they are under .500

  37. gt40bear says: Nov 4, 2013 11:57 AM

    Dez, maybe you should take a rules class from Jared Allen. Watching the reply, you could see he was calling for the flag even before the ref. threw the flag! What a dumb-ass!

  38. bringbackwayne says: Nov 4, 2013 11:58 AM

    Come on , he was just showing his passion when he removed his helment(sarcasm).

    Is he just a box of rocks? This rule has been around for a while now.

  39. ma5terbla5t3r says: Nov 4, 2013 11:58 AM

    Duck –

    Then get out on the field and play, Bro.

  40. firebrand34 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:00 PM


  41. philyeagles5 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:02 PM

    Taking off your helmet on the field is a penalty regardless of what you’re doing.

  42. Getoffmylawn! says: Nov 4, 2013 12:02 PM

    Still better than Calvin “Microtron” Johnson.

    Cowboy fans are idiots. Maybe as big as logicaldouche is.

  43. sdakota says: Nov 4, 2013 12:05 PM

    maybe if he spent less time on the sideline yelling, he would have time to learn the rules.
    an example of a lame organization that does not hold their players accountable. most teams take a player out for a play or chew him out for doing something stupid. cowboys”’ nothing( unless pretend gm J.Jones hugged him on the sidelines)

  44. edisbetterthantroy says: Nov 4, 2013 12:08 PM

    LogicalVoiceSays is at it again. You sniffed way too much glue as a kid. You can’t truly believe your comments, but you play the perfect PFT villain.

    Apparently, you missed Sunday Night Football because #80 looked ok too. I’m not saying Andre Johnson is a top 5 WR anymore, but still WAY BETTER than Pierre Garcon. I guess guys like AJ Green, Dez, or anyone who wears a Broncos jersey are just hacks? Bottom line is that I would take at least 10-15 guys over Garcon. No glue here…

  45. wingz101 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:09 PM

    Serious question about this rule … was it not supposed to be that you could not take you helmet off at any point on the field of play before, during or after a play regardless of whether you were talking to a Ref?

    I seem to recall the Browns getting shafted once because a player took off his helmet on the filed after a blocked field goal and the other team got a redo and won … does anyone else remember that?

  46. godofwine330 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:09 PM

    Browns fans remember Dwayne Rudd “a.k.a. Helmetgate” when we essentially won the game with 00:00 on the clock, but he took off his helmet before the actual play was over giving the Chiefs 15 yards + an untimed down which they used to kick the winning field goal to win the game.

    He should know better.

  47. realitypolice says: Nov 4, 2013 12:10 PM

    This is what you get when not only don’t condemn his repeated acts of stupidity, but appear to encourage and endorse them like they did last week.

    Why in the world would he tone down his act when his teammates, coaches and his owner go out of their way to not only NOT criticize him for a 10 minute outburst on the sidelines, but make statements in support of it?

    It’s going to keep escalating, because that’s what happens. It’s the reason you have leaders in the first place. But the Cowboys leaders are refusing to lead, and this is the result.

  48. ivanpavlov0000 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:12 PM

    Hard to believe he doesn’t know this rule, but at least one player gets nailed for this every season.

    I saw how the Vikings were trying to provoke him into losing his temper. He did a good job of not taking the bait. But until he learns to keep his cool, players on the opposing teams are going to go after him.

    And no, the Jonathan Martin situation is not similar. Getting it daily from your linemates (on your own team) is different from a little verbal abuse from opponents during a game.

  49. mclovin07 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:15 PM


    Dude, how stupid are you??

  50. bhails says: Nov 4, 2013 12:15 PM

    If you are a professional in anything, it’s your responsibility to know the rules.

  51. faulkana says: Nov 4, 2013 12:18 PM

    Dez didn’t get to see too much football as a kid.
    Hanging out at the family business….the TV wasn’t turned on all that often.

  52. dowhatifeellike says: Nov 4, 2013 12:18 PM

    I guess he never watched Derrick Mason play. He was good for getting that penalty twice per year.

  53. footballchic777 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:19 PM

    Am I playing in the pros? Where am I? Duh……yes, this is a penalty and it has been for a while! Donovan McNabb calling….

  54. darkneptune73 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:19 PM

    Someone needs to give Dez the rulebook as homework. Read EVERY SINGLE rule and then test him on it. That’ll fix the problem.

  55. geniusry says: Nov 4, 2013 12:19 PM

    Easy Cowboys haters. This is another pot stirring article trying to make Dez look bad.

  56. longbino says: Nov 4, 2013 12:21 PM

    He’s just mad the best WR in Texas is also named Johnson . Maybe he will change his name to Dez Johnson . This guy is crazy

  57. Deb says: Nov 4, 2013 12:23 PM

    Considering how much publicity there’s been about this rule–and how long it’s been in place–I can’t believe Bryant was oblivious. That said, though, it’s an idiotic rule. Absolutely idiotic.

  58. cash804 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:25 PM

    bpayton52 says:
    Nov 4, 2013 11:27 AM

    meanwhile back in reality the cowboys are leading the division and dez has more yards and tds than all redskin wideouts combined


    * and arrests

  59. ziplock10 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:26 PM

    bpayton52 says: Nov 4, 2013 11:27 AM

    meanwhile back in reality the cowboys are leading the division and dez has more yards and tds than all redskin wideouts combined


    You had to get 5 turnovers and still almost lost to the G-men and you barely beat the Ponder jv…. Awesome!!!!

    FYI RGIII has a gimpy knee and still is 202 total rushing behind your “rb” Murray.

  60. kenny328usa says: Nov 4, 2013 12:28 PM

    what a clown

  61. stigman2012 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:30 PM

    I’m not shocked he was shocked.

  62. jimthebuilder27 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:36 PM

    The 5 Best Receivers (in my opinion) do NOT include Garcon.
    -Calvin Johnson
    -Andre Johnson
    -Larry Fitzgerald (considering what he’s had to put up with in Arizona, absolutely!)
    -Brandon Marshall
    -AJ Green
    Honerable Mention: Jordy Nelson

  63. NoobTubeTV says: Nov 4, 2013 12:37 PM

    Rain Man knew that and he was a ruhtard.

  64. realitypolice says: Nov 4, 2013 12:41 PM

    It’s ironic that he doesn’t know the rule since it was a former Cowboy that was the inspiration for it.

    Emmitt Smith used to rip his helmet off during TD celebrations which led to other players doing it and hence the rule.

    Why the made the rule so sweeping instead of just banning it during TD celebrations, I have no idea.

    But it’s not surprising to me that an NFL player might not be aware of a rule. It wasn’t that long ago the Donovan didn’t know that a regular season game could end in a tie.

  65. 7mantel says: Nov 4, 2013 12:41 PM

    Either a lier or stupid ! What professional NFLer does not the helmet rule ! Just his anger coming out again !

  66. bkunza says: Nov 4, 2013 12:41 PM

    Bryant is a douche!

  67. uangerme says: Nov 4, 2013 12:46 PM

    ma5terbla5t3r says: Nov 4, 2013 11:44 AM

    Still better than Calvin “Microtron” Johnson.


    Dez? Is that you?

  68. lifelongbrownsfan says: Nov 4, 2013 12:46 PM

    Dez Bryant, meet Dwayne Rudd…discuss.

  69. dp4life22 says: Nov 4, 2013 12:47 PM


    are you serious skins have 3 wins and you brag, please at start of year all skins fans thought they would be undefeated, haha!! rj3 cnt do it alone.

    just like every year you guys spend millions and win nothing..

    Dont talk till you actually done something or at least be .500

  70. keylimelight says: Nov 4, 2013 12:56 PM

    Dez Bryant has been in the league long enough to know that players are required to wear their helmets at all times when in between the lines during a game. To purposely remove it while on the field, especially in front of and while arguing with a referee, is cause for a penalty.

    His excuse is like the lie a child with chocolate around his mouth would tell his mom about not eating the cake before supper.

    Let’s not pretend for a second that his explanation has any basis in truth. Please.

  71. CowboyErik says: Nov 4, 2013 1:10 PM

    This article is BS. He knows the rule, he did not say he didn’t know the rule

  72. markdamack says: Nov 4, 2013 1:17 PM

    This comment section just goes to prove how good Dez is.

    He took his helmet off. That’s it. Said he didn’t know the rule, now he does and he’ll never do it again.

    There’s about 65 comments in here berating Dez Bryant. McNabb didn’t know the game could end in a tie. Chip Kelly didn’t know the rule about injured players a few weeks ago. Dalton didn’t know the safety rule. He flat out admitted “Hey, I didn’t know the rule and now I do, it wont happen again” and you cry baby jealous women scream DIVA, CRIMINAL, HE’S SO IMMATURE

    It happens. You’re increased criticizm of Dez over very dumb things just goes to prove….You guys are SO mad he’s not on your team. Calling him a Diva…why? Because he was mad they lost the game last week? I don’t really use the word a lot, but this is what they mean by “Hater”

  73. nebster21 says: Nov 4, 2013 1:18 PM

    Do you think Dez knows if a game can end up in a tie?

  74. sdffa11 says: Nov 4, 2013 1:22 PM

    Dez Bryant must be an idiot. I never played a down of football at any level and I knew removing your helmet results in a penalty. I wonder if he knows a field goal also equals 3 pts.

  75. rodh32340 says: Nov 4, 2013 1:30 PM

    Stupid is as stupid does, my mama used to say….

  76. granadafan says: Nov 4, 2013 2:36 PM

    It appears that Dez Bryant, Ritchie Icognito, Ryan Braun, and Alex Rodriguez all took lessons from the same PR team. Deny deny deny and make the other side prove what a lying dumbarse you are.

  77. coloradocowboy says: Nov 4, 2013 2:42 PM

    I am a Dallas fan.

    As such, I find it totally inexcusable that a player, and a Cowboy at that, would NOT know the “Emmitt Smith Rule”.

  78. 1stpftfan says: Nov 4, 2013 3:00 PM

    Dez was shocked. Tiki was flabbergasted…

  79. cometkazie says: Nov 4, 2013 3:05 PM

    Doesn’t college have the same if not similar rule?

    High school athletes are expected to know the rules. You don’t grow out of that requirement.

  80. bradygirl12 says: Nov 4, 2013 3:10 PM

    He was only approaching Triplette in a “rah rah” sort of way,as Tony Romo would say. As long as people like him,Jones and Witten keep covering for him,Bryant will continue to behave like a fool. Coloradocowboy is right…that rule came about because of Emmitt Smith taking his helmet off in the end zone during TD celebrations. You’d think a Cowboy would know that.

  81. trollingforjustice says: Nov 4, 2013 3:41 PM

    No sense on learning the rules, your’e just going to break them anyway.
    Calvin Johnson knew the rule!!

  82. ColtsWinColtsWin!! says: Nov 4, 2013 4:19 PM

    Ummm…did the flag have an electric taser built into it?
    How the hell can you be shocked when you know the rules say you can’t take your helmet off when you are on the field of play. How about drumming down the fake drama a bit and work on being a solid team player! Oh Wait, he’s a cowgirl!, nevermind!!!

  83. cornerstone2001 says: Nov 4, 2013 4:24 PM

    Dez is shocked and Tiki is flabbergasted !

  84. ccjcsr says: Nov 4, 2013 4:30 PM



  85. shlort says: Nov 4, 2013 4:34 PM

    Dez needs to grow up. Then he can get himself a rule book and read it on his down time. The rules state that your helmet must be kept on your head while in the field of play. The only exception is if it comes lose or needs to be readjusted to fit your dreadlocks.

    Dez is one of those players with a boatload of talent that actually hurts his team. The Cowboys can’t let him go because he can make plays, but his behavior on and off the field makes it hard to get a team to gel. He has a “Dez first” attitude.

  86. swchiefsfanatic says: Nov 4, 2013 6:40 PM

    Garcon, not even close to being the best in the NFL. Thats gotta be some kind of joke right? Dez isnt either, but has the potential to be in the conversation some day. CJ, ANDRE, GREEN, MARSHAL, FITZGERALD, WELKER, COLSTEN. just off the top of my head wide outs with more talent than PG.

  87. hendeeze says: Nov 4, 2013 8:01 PM

    Pretty sure Dez has a problem comprehending words with more than 4 letters. It’s no wonder he doesn’t understand the rules.

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