Receivers have stolen the show in all three episodes of Hard Knocks: Training Camp with the Cleveland Browns. In Week One, it was Jarvis Landry‘s speech in the receivers room. Last week, it was Antonio Callaway‘s arrest and Corey Coleman‘s trade.
Bryant, who arrived with his agent, Kim Miale, was shown shaking hands and hugging nearly everyone in the building. He seemed to hit it off with Hue Jackson during a sit-down in the coach’s office.
“What are you looking for, Dez?” Jackson asked Bryant.
Bryant, dressed in a “Spiritual Gangster” T-shirt, told Jackson he was “just looking for realness, that’s all.”
“Well, Dez, I tell you this opportunity that’s sitting before you, to me, is kind of unique in a sense that we’re at a time where I think we’re about to do this [uses hand to signal rising], at a time where you could help us get this organization back to where it rightfully should be,” Jackson said. “The last two years have been hell. I’ll be the first to tell you that. But it’s going to take guys like you who love to compete, who love to go in these big stadiums, it’s like, ‘We’re here, and we’re coming here to kick your ass.’ And that’s the kind of guys I’m looking for. I know you know Jarvis Landry. Jarvis Landry is real.”
“I love everything about him,” Bryant said of Landry.
“Absolutely,” Jackson said. “He’s going to compete. As you know, a football team’s got to have enough guys that have that mentality and mindset, and then it flips. The whole culture flips. The owners, they’ve given these football players anything and everything. We haven’t given them back winning, and that’s the thing that’s got to turn now. In order to deliver, I need guys like you.”
The Cowboys, who drafted Bryant in the first round in 2010, released Bryant on April 13, making him a free agent for the first time. The Ravens offered him a three-year, $21 million deal, but Bryant turned it down.
The Browns are the only known team to have shown interest since.
“Coach, it’s new to me,” Bryant told Jackson. “I’m just being honest. All this is new. Just being honest, the way you’re expressing yourself, the way you’re talking to me, we barely know each other, and I feel comfortable. That’s what these players want. I want to just be honest with you. I just want that realness ’cause I’m going to give you who I am. I feel like I’m an easy person to talk to. I love learning. I want to know things. If there’s something I’m not doing right, I want to know those things ’cause I feel like we all deserve that. We all deserve that opportunity.”
Bryant left without a deal, but not before a bold prediction from Jackson.
“Twenty-one days, baby. Pittsburgh Steelers. Right here at home in front of the Dawg Pound,” Jackson said. “It’ll be unbelievable. This will be the greatest turnaround in sports history.”