Will McClay: Dez Bryant was inconsistent, couldn’t win one-on-one

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Dez Bryant remains unsigned more than two weeks after the Cowboys released him. The receiver turned down an offer from the Ravens, and no other team publicly has expressed interest in him.

Cowboys scouting chief Will McClay essentially admitted Bryant’s play didn’t match the $12.5 million base and $16.5 million salary cap number Bryant’s contract called for in 2018. Bryant has not had a 1,000-yard season since 2014, and he has gone 23 games without a 100-yard game.

Speaking for the first time since Bryant’s departure, McClay’s comments on ESPN 103.3 matched a report from early last month that the Cowboys believe Bryant no longer is the same player he was when they signed him to a five-year, $70 million contract in the 2015 offseason.

“It was a collective deal,” McClay said of Bryant’s release, via Clarence Hill of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “The [inability] to win one-on-one, to win downfield. There was inconsistency as well as some huge things in his play. So what’s best moving forward for Dez Bryant the Cowboys, we just made that decision. It’s a production-based business.”

76 responses to “Will McClay: Dez Bryant was inconsistent, couldn’t win one-on-one

  1. That’s true. He couldn’t get open anymore. His route running is horrible, he doesn’t fool anyone, and he can’t get separation. Dak would have to throw it into a 1×1 inch box.

  2. To be fair, it’s a little more than just “production-based business.” Economics plays a huge role too – it Dez had been on a $2m/yr contract, he’d still be around.

  3. Yeah well McClay has been such an asset to the organization… Lol…. Does he realize it’s a bottom line business? What a joke

  4. But how much was he making in the first 5 years of his rookie contract when he was a young stud? ? They got his best years when he wasn’t making the money he deserved. And I do understand he did get his contract but essentially he only made that for 3 years..

  5. BOOM OH SNAP! but but but ….. it was Daks fault. SMH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Schools out!

  6. 700levelvet says:
    May 1, 2018 at 5:27 pm
    Yeah well McClay has been such an asset to the organization… Lol…. Does he realize it’s a bottom line business? What a joke

    You REALLY HAVE NO CLUE at all! You and “the truth” who are the same person are just haters. Just here for the “clicks”.
    No football I.Q. any one can post hate, try posting football knowledge.

  7. Why is the scouting chief doing radio interviews and speaking for the team. That’s sad and absolutely intentional to damage Dez’ reputation with other teams.

  8. Les see Dak last year basically had No RB No LT and no WR. And he was Still a top 15 qb in the NFL THUS ONLY being in his SECOND year of the NFL. SMH! Just think how much slower the NFL is going to be for him this year in year 3. It will be like playing Madden for DAK!

  9. @700levelvet

    Seriously, posting football knowledge? Dost thou realize what blog page thou be-ist on? Football IQ? Knowledge? ha ha, thanks. I will be laughing all evening about that one.

  10. He turned down a prove it deal from the Ravens. Reminds me of when Latrell Spreewell turned down a 3 year $21 million contract from the Timberwolves. He said it was a slap in the face and he had to feed his family. He never played in the NBA after that and now he’s flat broke.

  11. Football knowledge you want…. 2 playoff wins in 2 and a half decades. That enough?

  12. Oh I get it… you guys don’t actually live in Dallas, don’t pay to go to games… Just root for America’s team from your couch, and latch on.,, “Most mediocre fan base in sports”… it fits

  13. Another talented player who never took the time
    to be great. He never learned how to get off the line
    of scrimmage. Then he stopped working and began
    to complain about other people and issues.
    You can’t cheat the NFL. When you stop doing the work
    it eventually shows up.

  14. I totally agree, 700levelvet and The Truth are one and the same. Try posting something intelligent for a change.
    Will McClay speaks the truth.

  15. @700levelvet
    Not agreeing or disagreeing with you about your comment, but one’s football knowledge does not correlate with how good or bad their favorite team is

  16. Remember the Dez and Romo era…. they accomplished so much…. Ring of honor, maybe Claiborne as well..,

  17. Dez has the all time record for TD’s in Cowboy’s. How can he not be put in the ring of honor?

    From the outside looking in, it would seem like Dez is his own worst enemy. But then, aren’t we all? (most of us, anyway).

    PS: I played 10 years as a WR in a touch/tackle league. Must have had 2000 plus receptions (it is quasi-little rascal football). Sometimes you’re the decoy that runs post patterns, sometimes you’re the go to guy all day long, sometimes you’re the go to guy on 3rd downs.

    You take what the QB gives you. I was always open, the QB knows it, you’re just showing him up by running your mouth or acting up so all can see.

    You don’t trash talk. Just talk nice or ignore the DB no matter how much he screams, yells etc. Play nice or act ignorant and they all stop. AJ Green does it (except that one time).

    If he pulls down on your hip as you go up or holds, you tell the QB to throw to someone else because I am going to bury him on the next play. Then you bury him again. Then you go to bury him and run a post. CYA. If none of that works, you play CB for a series and beat the crap out of their #1. Bury. Not bump and run. Bury. The message gets through and people leave you alone.

    Dez needed to just shut up, stop whining and bury people. Be focused, be calm, have a plan and the catches come.

  18. Bryant is the one taking the high road here. It’s time he speaks the truth:

    The QB has no touch,
    The QB is not accurate
    The QB lacks the anticipation the good ones have
    And last but not least the QB needs a wide open receiver to complete anything over 4 yds. He throws to the body not to the spot. No feel whatsoever.

    There Dez i said it for you

  19. Have you watched any of “All or Nothing”?, Dez was wearing PPL out with his actions and wasn’t taking well to Coaching, not shocked 1st move of off season was letting Derrick Dooley go

  20. Today’s Dez is future OBJ. When a high paid high maintenance Diva begins to lose it, they get cut fast.

  21. I agree with the cowboys moving on since Dak us there qb, but if you watched the tape dak consistently missed on throws and placed the ball poorly, just keep on going with the popular narrative though

  22. 700levelvet says:
    May 1, 2018 at 5:27 pm
    Yeah well McClay has been such an asset to the organization… Lol…. Does he realize it’s a bottom line business? What a joke
    ——————-
    Wow. I can see how people who don’t like the Cowboys can bash Jerry and Garrett. I get that. However, for someone to imply that Will McClay has been anything but tremendous for the Cowboys just doesn’t know that much about football.
    Dallas is lucky to have him and that’s why he’s paid like a GM.

  23. calizcowboyz says:
    May 1, 2018 at 5:38 pm
    BOOM OH SNAP! but but but ….. it was Daks fault. SMH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Schools out!

    /////////////////////////

    NEVER seen SUCH a MAN crush BEFORE in MY life!!!!!!!!!

  24. The Truth says:
    @calizcowby

    Not even worth a response
    —————
    yet you did anyway.

  25. Dak was just below average last year. His inability to read defenses and make the best decisions from the pocket really hurt Dallas last year. You do not need elite WRs to have a productive passing game. Has Dez declined? Sure. Was he the reason the passing game was inefficient last year? Nope.

  26. Man crush or just protecting my q.b from all your hate? Or shal I say your lack of football knowledge? But you are correct I do Love Me Some Dak! That’s My Qb! … now only picture me crying like T.O. Did for Romo.

  27. Bash a guy publicly, after refusing to release him until well after the initial wave of free agent had signed and there wasn’t anyone looking for a vet WR (let alone at a high price)

    Yet they wonder why nobody signs there year after year

  28. I like some of the discussion here. Last year wasn’t a great year for Dak, that’s true. But Dez isn’t the same player he was either. He has a hard time getting open, and when he did catch passes he very often fumbled them. He had some bad drops last year too… and some pop ups that turned into interceptions. So let’s not put the blame entirely on one of them, the blame goes with both. But when you add the contract and the sideline antics to the Dez column, it doesn’t make sense to keep him. If he was so amazing, he’d have a contract right now and he doesn’t. That tells you all you need to know. If the Cowboys cut Dak, he’d be signed in 2 minutes with another team.

  29. Dez’s head just exploded….and his social media feed will follow suit shortly.

  30. The problem is thinking Dez is the kind of receiver who needs to be open. Dak doesn’t have the placement to give Dez a chance to win when he is covered, which is what Dez does as well as anyone. He will be an asset for someone He didn’t fit Dak or the Cowboys anymore.

  31. Maybe I’ll be wrong, but I think we are looking at the end of this prima donna’s career….way to much of a distraction for anyone to take on…

  32. It’s going to be so great when the Cowboys suck even more next season. even the Giants and Redskins have surpassed them as they spiral downward into purgatory.

  33. The Truth says:

    Bryant is the one taking the high road here. It’s time he speaks the truth:

    The QB has no touch,
    The QB is not accurate
    The QB lacks the anticipation the good ones have
    And last but not least the QB needs a wide open receiver to complete anything over 4 yds. He throws to the body not to the spot. No feel whatsoever.

    There Dez i said it for you
    =================================================

    That must be why all the teams are fighting each other to sign him, huh?

  34. .
    all cowboy WR’s stats are done since dak…
    but but dak was top 15 last year…
    UM… yeah ok that is because he played a full year many REAL Top QB’s didnt play all year last year. 2017 was one of the worst years for QB injuries.
    Andrew Luck, Aaron Rodgers, Sam Bradford, Teddy Bridgewater, Carson Palmer, Deshaun Watson, Jameis Winston, Derek Carr, Marcus Mariota, Jay Cutler, Carson Wentz, Paxton Lynch, Josh McCown
    So yeah Dak was really good last year compared to these QB’s who missed many games due to injuries…

  35. Everyone’s loving their draft picks .. good luck finding a team dez ( They Dont love you like they used too )

  36. officialgame says:
    May 1, 2018 at 8:27 pm
    It’s going to be so great when the Cowboys suck even more next season. even the Giants and Redskins have surpassed them as they spiral downward into purgatory.

    How so? We had a Top 10 Defense last year And it only got stronger this offseason. We didnt have Zeke for 10 games last year, but we have him for ALL games year this year. We didnt have Smith for seven games last year, he is back healthy. And IF he were to miss time again this year we now have a couple of Very Solid pick ups to replace him. Dak wasnt perfect last year No one is, but considering that he had No RB No LT and No WR .. I think for a SECOND year QB he was pretty darn good.
    All things considering. Now he Did lose his footwork BUT that was ONLY because he was getting CLOBBERED and he got happy feet. HECK YOU get SACKED 9 times in ONE game and see if you dont have happy feet.
    So again I ask you how so? We finished with a WINNING record and a TOP 10 Defense. So how is it that we are going to finish last next year? F A C T S please.

  37. You all are forgetting that Dez is the best contested catching WR possibly ever. Separation has never been his game. Also he had more balls go (way) over his head than any WR in the NFL last year thanks to his qb. Just sayin’ not all his fault.

  38. Remember when yall Cowboys fans acted like Dez was the next coming of Michael Irvin? Then he got that contract and started sucking?

    Pepperidge Farms remembers.

  39. I also believe Dez is done. Some team will sign him on a prove it contract and after a short time cut him.

  40. Maybe Dez should have been working on his game all these years instead of taking his skills for granted. Now that he’s lost “something” now he wants everyone to know “hey, look at me, I’m willing to work!” Day late Dez, day late.

  41. Some of you arguing commentors seem like angry trolls. You know who you are. It’s entertaining to others sometimes, but you guys should prioritize your emotional energy differently. Have a good day.

  42. amishcowboy says:
    May 1, 2018 at 6:41 pm
    Have you watched any of “All or Nothing”?, Dez was wearing PPL out with his actions and wasn’t taking well to Coaching, not shocked 1st move of off season was letting Derrick Dooley go

    Sir, please get the facts straight! Derek Dooley was offered an extension before the 2017 season. He refused!! The reason…..Linehan allowed him NO say in the play book, so he finished out his contract, and went on to greener pastures 🙁 They did NOT “let him go”! Linehan was ragging on Dez for a long time. Kellen Moore, Linehan’s guy and a horrible q/b, is now the q/b coach…smh McClay is awesome; however, he certainly should not be talking to the media, imo….

  43. 700levelvet you obviously have no idea what will mclay has brought to the cowboys.

  44. Dez will be in demand as soon as the first (of many probably) WRs goes down with an injury. I’m sure Dez has a voodoo doll of every NFC East WR.

  45. Dez threw everyone under the bus on his way out the door. That will NEVER endear you to prospective employers. And he didn’t come off well on All or Nothing. He decided a few weeks ago he was gonna hire a coach to work with him on route running, but why did it take rumors about losing his job for him to begin to concentrate on his craft? I still think he has gas left in his tank, but declaring his desire to play for a division rival made him look a little petty. Best of luck 88!

  46. Dez was fine when Romo was the qb; you get a thrower instead of a passer and you wonder about Dez’s production? The real problem that Dak isn’t a legit qb and after this coming season , the nation will know the same.

  47. Dez may not be as great as he used to be. But it seems odd his drop off ( as well as every other WR on the team ) followed the loss of Romo. When Romo was QB, Dallas regularly finished in the top 6 in passing offense. Under Dak, Dallas is in the mid 20’s. Dak is young, big and strong. But he does not have the passing skills and defensive reading skills that Romo had. He may develop them in time, but that is still to be seen. I think that is one reason Dallas drafted Mike White. I think Dallas wants options in case the offense continues in a funk and Dez does not improve. Its a passing league, you need a QB that can beat defenses with their arms.

  48. knownbutunkown says:
    May 1, 2018 at 5:34 pm
    But how much was he making in the first 5 years of his rookie contract when he was a young stud? ? They got his best years when he wasn’t making the money he deserved. And I do understand he did get his contract but essentially he only made that for 3 years
    ———-
    He made close to 12 mil during is rookie deal and another 45 mil on the second contract.

    Not sure why people complain about rookie wage scales when they were pushed for by the union. The union was tired of unproven rookies getting huge deals they didn’t deserve. For every Dez who is paid under market value in the last couple of years of his rookie deal there are 10 players who don’t earn a second contract. Would everyone rather overpay those 10 guys so the one guy isn’t underpaid?

  49. calizcowboyz says:
    May 1, 2018 at 8:47 pm

    How so?
    ————-
    1. Dak regressed last year. Blame the Zeke suspension if you want but you could also attribute it to how D’s were playing him.
    2. The Cowboys lost their 2 best receivers in Witten and Dez. That’s not saying a lot because neither were great but they didn’t get better with their signings. Allen Hurns, Terrance Newman and Cole Beasley, not exactly a group that puts fear into D’s.
    3. Jason Garrett & Jerry Jones are still running things.

    8-8 at best.

  50. calizcowboyz says:
    May 1, 2018 at 8:47 pm
    officialgame says:
    May 1, 2018 at 8:27 pm
    It’s going to be so great when the Cowboys suck even more next season. even the Giants and Redskins have surpassed them as they spiral downward into purgatory.

    How so? We had a Top 10 Defense last year And it only got stronger this offseason. We didnt have Zeke for 10 games last year, but we have him for ALL games year this year. We didnt have Smith for seven games last year, he is back healthy. And IF he were to miss time again this year we now have a couple of Very Solid pick ups to replace him. Dak wasnt perfect last year No one is, but considering that he had No RB No LT and No WR .. I think for a SECOND year QB he was pretty darn good.
    All things considering. Now he Did lose his footwork BUT that was ONLY because he was getting CLOBBERED and he got happy feet. HECK YOU get SACKED 9 times in ONE game and see if you dont have happy feet.
    So again I ask you how so? We finished with a WINNING record and a TOP 10 Defense. So how is it that we are going to finish last next year? F A C T S please.

    ———-

    Here is a fact…..you were not missing Zeke for 10 games

  51. That Bryant can’t get open is no secret. It’s also irrelevant to this story. What matters is that a team’s personnel guy is trashing a former player before he has a chance to sign with another team. Whatever happened to “we just decided to go in another direction?”

    Classless move from a classless franchise.

  52. kemp13 says: “That Bryant can’t get open is no secret. It’s also irrelevant to this story. What matters is that a team’s personnel guy is trashing a former player before he has a chance to sign with another team. Whatever happened to “we just decided to go in another direction?”
    —————————–

    Other teams do have scouts too and I’d have to assume they would also review the game films before committing millions of dollars to a player. And as YOU even said, it “is no secret.” So it’s not like McClay dropped a bombshell in the NFL world.

  53. Just watch All or Nothing on Amazon. He’s a friggin pain in the ass! He tops T.O.!

  54. Want another example? Look at Jarvis Landry’s numbers. He led the league in catches, yet couldn’t break the 1000 yard mark. 5 TD average for career….can’t get separation on boundary corners, and he got overpaid.

    Crazy

  55. When was Dez ever able to seperate though? He was a 4.5 wr when he was drafted. He was never drafted to cause “seperation” nor was his speed the determining factor to his productivity. I will admit, it was painful to see him drop as many passes as he did last year, but you can include the entire offense in that total dropoff.

    I am probably a minority Cowboy fan who view the team with an unbiased eye, and will admit that there are some shortcomings that do not only fall just on Dez.
    1. Look at the entire passing offense, there were dramtic declines from Witten, Beasley, and Williams.
    2. The Defense took away the short passing game to Witten & Beasley, the Cowboys could not counteract that move
    3. There were no immediate adjustments to the defense. (6 sacks from Chaz Green in the Atl game before he was pulled).
    4. All offensive position coaches were replaced with the exception of our RB Coach.

    If Dez was the sole problem, then alot of the changes made to our staff wouldn’t have happen.

    I understand the narrative, Dez did not help much with his lack of production, but to say the offenseive problems where all on him is not true.

    With Dez gone, we shall see what Dak is truly made of. (Good or bad)

  56. The media has its fav players, meaning whatever players give them the most content material with which to generate profit and advance their own careers and fame.
    Dez was one of those fav players so the media openly, and aggressively, advocates for players like Dez.
    IMO Dez thinks he’s a faster version of Larry Fitzgerald right now…he’s NOT…and due to the enabling of the media Dez still thinks he can produce like Fitz does…he CAN’T.
    Therefore Dez has a humility problem. If he doesn’t humble himself and take what he can get, he will be out of the NFL because no team has a use for an old, slow, non-productive blowhard high maintenance WR.
    Your move Dez.

  57. Sorry. Not buying it. In 2014 Tony Romo’s last season as a full time starter Dez had 1320 yards receiving, 16TD, and 15 yards per reception. As soon as Dak became a starter those numbers tailed off.
    Dez has never been a receiver that runs great routes and gets huge separation. He has always been a big receiver that out physicals and over powers DBs even when dropped all over him. Really similar to Michael Irvin in fact. Tony knew this and not only threw him and his receivers open but also would go to Dez even when tightly covered. Dak at this point of his career can’t do that. That coupled with injuries are why Dez’s numbers are down.

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