Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Jim Schwartz: Both WRs among the best
By Todd Archer
IRVING, Texas – The Dez Bryant-Calvin Johnson subject will not go away this week.
Bryant started it off on Monday when he spoke with 103.3 ESPN in Dallas.
"I believe I can do whatever he can do," Bryant said. "I think it's just a pride thing. When it comes to football, just being on the field, it's a mindset and having a mentality. I honestly believe when I'm there, I'll be feeling like there's nothing I can't do. Whatever the coaches ask me to do, I'm going to do it.”
On Tuesday Nate Burleson came to Johnson’s defense, crediting Bryant but conceding Johnson is better, calling him a “living legend.”
“He's not Calvin Johnson,” Burleson said. “No way, no how. Sorry Dez. Keep it real.”
On a conference call Wednesday, Lions coach Jim Schwartz was asked about the similarities between Bryant and Johnson.
“He’s one of the best receivers in the NFL, as is Calvin, and I think that’s about the only comparison that you need to make between those two guys,” Schwartz said. “Every player is different. Every player has things that they do well and things they do well within the scheme and things like that. And we’re going to have our hands full getting Dez Bryant stopped and I’m sure Dallas is working really hard to find a way to get Calvin stopped.”
Schwartz sees a different Bryant than the one he prepared for in 2011. Bryant caught three passes for 37 yards and had two touchdowns in the Cowboys’ 34-30 loss the Lions at AT&T Stadium.
“He’s playing like a veteran player now,” Schwartz said. “He’s taken the load of the No. 1 receiver. That’s a big burden to be the No. 1 receiver. You’re going to see attention every week. You’re going to see double teams. You’re going to see corners rolled to your side and it’s a big mental adjustment to go through that and I think that Dez Bryant has done that. He’s made big plays for them. He’s always been a really strong player, but you just see him maturing as a player and I think that’s good for the NFL when you see young players improve like he has.”