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Dez Bryant explains how film study helped him beat Harrison Smith

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NFL players rarely offer the kind of in-depth look at how they study film that Dez Bryant has revealed on the Cowboys’ website, looking at how he beat Vikings safety Harrison Smith last season.

Bryant says on the video that he studied Smith on film, saw how aggressive Smith is, and knew that there was a way to use that aggressiveness against Smith.

“Harrison Smith, we knew from watching film that he’s an extremely aggressive safety,” Bryant said. “If you run any kind of in cuts, out breaking routes, he’s ready to drive on them. So I felt like we did an outstanding job game planning him.”

Bryant said that before even looking back at quarterback Dak Prescott, he knew just from seeing Smith bite on his fake that he was going to break a big play.

“I want to sell him inside just because I know he’s aggressive. I know once I sell the in he was gonna bite because that’s what he’s been showing all year, driving hard on those in cuts, and we know that he’s going to jump it,” Bryant said. “I knew I had him.”

Bryant got open deep for a 56-yard gain on the play in question, a play that was drawn up in the film room.

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48 Responses to “Dez Bryant explains how film study helped him beat Harrison Smith”
  1. Cleanosaur says: Jul 8, 2017 10:37 AM

    Average receiver. Wes Welker was better.

  2. nsm70 says: Jul 8, 2017 10:38 AM

    Thanks for letting him know, hopefully he pulls back on the aggression and reads the route.

  3. maxkingpin says: Jul 8, 2017 10:44 AM

    Is this some new thing, using film study to exploit another teams weaknesses?

  4. bobonit says: Jul 8, 2017 10:49 AM

    Atta boy

  5. wordsmith513 says: Jul 8, 2017 10:55 AM

    So Dez Bryant thinks he is the only one who does film study? In today’s NFL EVERYONE does film study. It is however only one aspect to how a person or team plays when the lights go on. Bryant may rest on his previous study and get beat himself in the next game – he strikes me as being a guy who does as little as possible to get by. Other factors affecting performance could include, pregame coaching – on the part of the MN defense in this case, injuries or health issues a player may be playing with, distractions in a players life that could cloud reaction time, etc.

  6. SexBoat Captain says: Jul 8, 2017 11:13 AM

    Sun shines on a Diva every once in a while ! Dirty Harry is most intelligent /skilled safety in Nfl won’t happen again . Skol !

  7. BIGGSHAUN says: Jul 8, 2017 11:20 AM

    Everybody hates on Dez. I’m the complete opposite of a Cowboys fan, but the guy is an awesome player and a hard worker. Mad respect for the dude.

  8. mnrasslinggovjesse says: Jul 8, 2017 11:22 AM

    Smith is one of the more overhyped players in the league.

  9. doctorrustbelt says: Jul 8, 2017 11:22 AM

    124 total passing yards with all that film study.

  10. ariani1985 says: Jul 8, 2017 11:31 AM

    why can’t my lowly packers have WRs like this?

  11. mnvikes1961 says: Jul 8, 2017 11:33 AM

    Let’s take Smith’s ankle injury out of the play and it might have been a totally different situation. Not so easy when you’re hobbled.

  12. ZombieVikings says: Jul 8, 2017 11:39 AM

    Two things here. One, Film study is done by mostly every player in just about every sport, maybe Dez is finally understanding that, he is a bit slow. Two, thanks for sharing, I’m sure Harrison will be playing soft coverage now…..and with a healthy ankle….

  13. cookerduff123 says: Jul 8, 2017 12:06 PM

    Good thing for Dez that film study doesn’t require the reading of words or he’d be S.O.L.

  14. 250dollarnflowner says: Jul 8, 2017 12:20 PM

    Vikes secondary got beat for 1 play the whole game. How do you explain the rest of the game?

  15. The Almighty Cabbage says: Jul 8, 2017 12:20 PM

    In Harriet’s defense, she just wasn’t herself after Eddie Lacy trucked her into oblivion. Let’s face it… Jay Cutler even bowled Harriet over on his way into the end zone. Jay. Cutler.

    I honestly can’t predict what will happen with Harriet. Will she bounce back and get back to her old self or will she shy away from contact forevermore?

  16. aypeeswhippingstick says: Jul 8, 2017 12:21 PM

    Doesn’t say much for you if Dez out thinks you.

  17. franfoley says: Jul 8, 2017 1:17 PM

    That’s probably when Zim got the stink eye, pink eye or whatever it was….

  18. abninf says: Jul 8, 2017 1:49 PM

    ariani1985 says:

    why can’t my lowly packers have WRs like this?
    =====================================

    Because you don’t have a General Manager about to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall Of Fame like Mr. Jerry “Chess Grandmaster” Jones is.

  19. Frazier28/7 says: Jul 8, 2017 2:11 PM

    Thanks for the info on what Harrison should on down in Mankato, he doesn’t have many areas of weakness as one of the best in the game at his position.

    The Vikings defense played one of their best games that night. I’m looking forward to the rematch.

  20. notlistinin says: Jul 8, 2017 2:12 PM

    doctorrustbelt says:
    Jul 8, 2017 11:22 AM
    124 total passing yards with all that film study.
    250dollarnflowner says:
    Jul 8, 2017 12:20 PM
    Vikes secondary got beat for 1 play the whole game. How do you explain the rest of the game?
    ——————————————————————
    To both: 3rd game in 11 days. Excuse me, 3rd win in 3 games in 11 days.
    But your team did score 5 FGs, so there’s that.

  21. hmmm71 says: Jul 8, 2017 4:23 PM

    Dez had 4 catches for 84 yds in that game. 1 big play, and he did get open, but that play was most of his stats. Harrison had an injured ankle. Outside of that play, Dez didnt do much, considering the talent he has. And the Vikes were without Zim. No excuses, the Vikes lost, but look at the entire game.

  22. dirtydrynn27 says: Jul 8, 2017 4:33 PM

    Dez is over rated….Dude didn`t even have over 1000 yds. receiving but Dallas fans seem to think he is the best receiver to ever play the game!

  23. jbvikes says: Jul 8, 2017 4:45 PM

    You know, when Cabbage or what Just Happened, or Filthy chime in I always check the thumbs up and down before I even read their prose. EVERY time the thumbs down are WAY more than the thumbs up! Kinda tells you something, you know?

  24. The Phantom Stranger says: Jul 8, 2017 4:50 PM

    notlistinin says:
    Jul 8, 2017 2:12 PM
    doctorrustbelt says:
    Jul 8, 2017 11:22 AM
    124 total passing yards with all that film study.
    250dollarnflowner says:
    Jul 8, 2017 12:20 PM
    Vikes secondary got beat for 1 play the whole game. How do you explain the rest of the game?
    ——————————————————————
    To both: 3rd game in 11 days. Excuse me, 3rd win in 3 games in 11 days.
    But your team did score 5 FGs, so there’s that.
    _______

    Uh, it was three FGs and a TD with a missed 2-point conversion. And the only reason Dallas won that game was because they were able to put together an 8-yard drive after a muffed punt. I’ll take a defensive performance like that every week.

  25. billiam40 says: Jul 8, 2017 6:12 PM

    That was a nice catch, for sure. Other than that, Dez had 3 catches for 28 yards against an injured safety. Not exactly a stellar game.

  26. uknowimright1 says: Jul 8, 2017 6:37 PM

    I would pay to see this clown’s high school & NCAA school “work” LOLLLL

  27. bosszaraki says: Jul 8, 2017 6:45 PM

    Hey guys new info…gloves help you catch better. Shocking I know

  28. bluestars920 says: Jul 8, 2017 6:48 PM

    Hmmmm SACKED UR QB AND FORCED A FUMBLE LATE THAT’S HOW WE BEAT THE VIKINGS……..WHO’S NEXT

  29. abninf says: Jul 8, 2017 6:52 PM

    The Phantom Stranger says:

    Uh, it was three FGs and a TD with a missed 2-point conversion. And the only reason Dallas won that game was because they were able to put together an 8-yard drive after a muffed punt. I’ll take a defensive performance like that every week.
    =====================================

    You’ll take a defensive performance “like that” over a win every week? lol

  30. mnvikes1961 says: Jul 8, 2017 6:58 PM

    The Almighty Cabbage says:
    Jul 8, 2017 12:20 PM
    In Harriet’s defense, she just wasn’t herself after Eddie Lacy trucked her into oblivion. Let’s face it… Jay Cutler even bowled Harriet over on his way into the end zone. Jay. Cutler.

    I honestly can’t predict what will happen with Harriet. Will she bounce back and get back to her old self or will she shy away from contact forevermore?
    ________

    Funny. This comment coming from a fan of a team who’s *entire* defense is subpar.

  31. patsfan4lifesbchamps says: Jul 8, 2017 7:06 PM

    Edelman > Dez Bryant

  32. filthymcnasty3 says: Jul 8, 2017 7:11 PM

    Not surprising. Zimmer isn’t much of a coach.

  33. The Almighty Cabbage says: Jul 8, 2017 7:33 PM

    mnvikes1961 says:
    Jul 8, 2017 6:58 PM

    Funny. This comment coming from a fan of a team who’s *entire* defense is subpar.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    …and STILL owns your Vikings.

    Enjoy 8-8 again this year… IF you do that well.

  34. beer4guy says: Jul 8, 2017 7:50 PM

    I don’t remember the play, but a slowish WR making a double move on a safety 15+ yards down the field is as much on the pass rush as it is on Smith. But the Cowboys are one of the few teams with a good enough o-line to pull it off.

    I, for one, do not want HS to stop playing aggressive – keep driving on the deep ins. If a team wants to try to double move him, expect Zim to dial up the pressure. After a few good whacks on the QB, the OC will reconsider.

  35. glenne81 says: Jul 8, 2017 9:26 PM

    Thanks Dez. Must have been your ticket to the Super B,,,,,, oh wait.

  36. letsberealpeople says: Jul 8, 2017 10:30 PM

    And the Cowboys STILL only won because of a missed roughing-the-qb call (arm across the facemask during a throw) to close the game.

  37. gurnblanstonreturns says: Jul 8, 2017 11:26 PM

    Let’s check out Dez Bryant’s Pro Bowl! 2016 season:

    Receptions: 59, 62nd in the NFL
    Yards: 928, 35th in the NFL
    Efficiency: 59 catches on 108 targets for a catch rate of 54.6%, not even in the top 100 in the NFL

    Dez did manage a decent 15.7 yds/catch average which put him 11th in the NFL, but only 7th in the NFC (Pro Bowl?)

    But, I get it. The NFL is a hype league, not a merit league, especially for things like Pro Bowls and the Hall of Fame. So, every Cowboy is the greatest of all-time. (Heck, Tony Romo is 2-4 all-time in the playoffs with one of the wins being a gift from the refs against Detroit, and he’s talked about like he deserves to be considered in the Brady class.)

  38. jimbobcooterqbtutor says: Jul 9, 2017 12:42 AM

    At the time, I was a little disappointed that the Cowboys miracle season came to such an abrupt end. But now I’m not. I think it’s funny.

    No way they repeat that season, it’s gone and wasted just like the year Favre was on the Vikings and should have won the SB.

  39. h0metownzero says: Jul 9, 2017 9:06 AM

    This is nothing new. I think we’ve all seen Jordy Nelson 25 yards behind Harriet, coasting into the end zone for another easy score.

    Harrison Smith is a pretty poor player overall, but those peasants in MN will latch onto anyone.

  40. filthymcnasty3 says: Jul 9, 2017 9:12 AM

    It looks like in retrospect, Viking fans have once again awarded themselves a moral victory over the Cowboys.

    Congratulations to the entire state of MN on such a tremendous win!!!

    Who needs scoreboards anyway.

  41. axespray says: Jul 9, 2017 11:07 AM

    letsberealpeople says:
    Jul 8, 2017 10:30 PM
    And the Cowboys STILL only won because of a missed roughing-the-qb call (arm across the facemask during a throw) to close the game.
    ———————————
    Of course the losers go to the “it was the refz!” well again.

    Such crybabies… no wonder football karma keeps them from ever winning a Superbowl, such a loser fanbase doesn’t deserve to see their team win it.

  42. cheeseisfattening says: Jul 9, 2017 2:27 PM

    The film room in Green Bay has a full blown concession stand. Mike McCarthy always gets extra butter on his popcorn.

  43. stellarperformance says: Jul 9, 2017 4:52 PM

    cheeseisfattening says:
    Jul 9, 2017 2:27 PM
    The film room in Green Bay has a full blown concession stand. Mike McCarthy always gets extra butter on his popcorn.
    ///////////////////////////////

    That is frickin’ hilarious. You are without a doubt the funniest poster on this site. Everything you come up with is cutting-edge and original. I’m at a loss to find words to describe your genius. Nobody but you can come up with such witticisms. It doesn’t matter that you rely on Fake News to substantiate your existence, it’s that good. How on earth can anyone compete with such magnimity? The Vikings and their fans and their trolls should all bow down to their king. You.

    Is that better? I didn’t mean to humiliate you so badly on the other thread.

  44. atthemurph says: Jul 10, 2017 10:30 AM

    doctorrustbelt says:
    Jul 8, 2017 11:22 AM
    124 total passing yards with all that film study.
    —————————————-

    Dallas attempted only 18 passes the entire game. 124 net yards isn’t bad at all.

    The big problem the Wipings have is stopping the run. 140 rushing yards allowed on only 28 attempts. 5yds a rush…..

    MN won the turnover battle. Mn won the penalty battle. MN won the field position battle. But MN couldn’t win the game. That’s seems to be the epitaph for the entire franchise – Close but couldn’t finish.

  45. jimnsota says: Jul 11, 2017 9:06 AM

    Based of my film study (watching the game). The only thing learned in that game was Dallas had no shot of winning a Superbowl.

  46. fmc651 says: Jul 11, 2017 11:47 AM

    notlistinin says:
    Jul 8, 2017 2:12 PM
    But your team did score 5 FGs, so there’s that.
    ))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))
    McKinnon scored a TD and the Vikings went for two. In the 2 point attempt Bradford was hit in the helmet but the refs ignored the foul. Change your name to not paying attention.

  47. stellarperformance says: Jul 11, 2017 7:18 PM

    fmc651 says:
    Jul 11, 2017 11:47 AM
    McKinnon scored a TD and the Vikings went for two. In the 2 point attempt Bradford was hit in the helmet but the refs ignored the foul.
    //////////////////////////////////////////////

    Yeah, it happens. I remember a few years ago in a playoff loss to the Cardinals, Aaron Rodgers had his facemask blatantly pulled on the last play of the game in overtime. Ignored. Non-calls are more frequent than we would like and can occur during games more important than others.

  48. fmc651 says: Jul 13, 2017 2:11 AM

    Vikings have a top 5 defense for points per game. And top 3 for yards against per game. But to listen to the fudge fans here their defense is terrible.Everyone knows the Vikings have a very good defense. And the reality is the packers defense has been the problem for the packers for years . Wasting AR career with shoddy defense. Capers is untouchable it seems with MM coaching too.I think the hair dye has seeped into Dom’s brain. Why he thinks Fabio is good makes no sense. When he is vastly overrated and a selfish player.

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