Saturday, August 17, 2013
Fumble ruins otherwise big day for Dez
By Tim MacMahon
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Dez Bryant didn’t want to talk about any of the good plays he made Saturday.
The final moment of his four-yard, 74-yard performance, when cornerback Jerraud Powers ripped the ball out of Bryant’s hands at the end of a 27-yard gain across the middle, was all that was on the Cowboys’ big-play receiver’s mind.
“Pissed about the fumble,” Bryant hoarsely grumbled after the 12-7 loss to the Arizona Cardinals. “It’s just not me, you know what I’m saying? I don’t fumble. I’m not going to hold it over my head, because I know what type of player I am. It’s something I have to correct.”
Bryant has lost fumbles on only three of his 200 career receptions, but that doesn’t excuse what he called a “big, huge mistake” against the Cardinals. He pled guilty to trying to do too much on the play, attempting to switch hands with the ball while stiff-arming the defender.
“That outweighs what you’re doing in the ballgame, regardless of any circumstances,” Bryant said.
That’s especially true when it was one of six turnovers the Cowboys committed, five of which came during a scoreless first half for Dallas in the sloppy loss.
But Bryant’s breathtaking training camp -- and second half of the 2012 season, for that matter -- has carried over into the preseason. He’s caught seven passes for 129 yards in about a half’s worth of work.
Bryant’s phenomenal physical tools and the trust quarterback Tony Romo has in him was especially evident on Bryant’s first catch Saturday, a 25-yard gain on which he snatched the ball on a back-shoulder fade despite tight coverage by Pro Bowl cornerback Patrick Peterson.
“He knows the turnover matters more than anything else,” Romo said. “But he’s playing great.
“Today’s going to be a great teaching moment for him. Sometimes, some of the best lessons you learn are when you make a mistake. It depends on whether you take the approach or not to do that. He will.”
It’s an even safer bet that Bryant will keep making big plays.