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Making Sense of the “Garrett Guys” Behind Cowboys Dez Bryant Release

Sean Martin



Making Sense of the "Garrett Guys" Behind Cowboys Dez Bryant Release 1
(AP Photo/James D Smith)

As reality sets in for the Dallas Cowboys that their franchise leader in touchdown receptions is no longer part of their team, Dez Bryant's departure has shed light on some other potential harsh realities for America's Team.

In his "exit interview" with NFL Network's Jane Slater, Bryant was an open as always - this time about how his final days with the Cowboys went down around the organization.

Jon Machota on Twitter

Dez Bryant to @SlaterNFL: "This situation was very unfair to me." Added that former teammates he called "Garrett guys" worked against him. "I truly believe that. I want them to know that I know. I'll shoot them a text message and let them know.

The sticking point from Bryant's interview concerns the head coach that has stuck with the Cowboys (as a full-time HC) since 2011 in Jason Garrett. The Cowboys have shown an incredible level of commitment towards Garrett, who has rewarded them with seasons like 2014 and 2016 - winning the NFC East thanks to a core of players that should certainly be considered "Jason Garrett guys".

Near the top of this list of players is Dez Bryant, who now serves as the latest Cowboys example of how quickly rosters can turn over in the NFL. Ideally, the Cowboys are looking to build a roster full of players that want to fight for Jason Garrett - a coach that has seen many franchise players who carried him early in his career depart under his tenure.

There is no doubt that Garrett is truly on the proverbial hot seat for this 2018 season. On the heels of a 9-7 campaign, the Cowboys likely need to return to the playoffs to see Garrett continue leading this team. To do so, it feels like they'll be relying on less "Garrett guys" than ever, but is this really the case?

Making Sense of the "Garrett Guys" Behind Cowboys Dez Bryant Release

Dallas Cowboys QB Dak Prescott, HC Jason Garrett

No one person inside The Star made the decision this late in April to move on from Dez Bryant. This move was agreed upon by a majority of high-ranking Cowboys voices, at least some of which had soured completely on Bryant's overall impact on the team.

Jon Machota on Twitter

Dak Prescott on not having a say in Dez Bryant's release: "I'm in my second year so as much as you want to say, I want a say and this and that, those guys get paid a lot more than me and that's what those guys are there to do.

As we sit here on another Sunday without Cowboys football though, the Cowboys are not a better football team than they were at any point with Dez Bryant on their roster. The Cowboys are seemingly distancing themselves from Jason Garrett (as they possibly should be prior to the 2018 NFL Draft) under the facade that this team is built to be his.

If "Garrett guys" such as Quarterback Dak Prescott - firmly cemented as this team's starting QB for the foreseeable future - were able to have a say in Dez Bryant departing Dallas, than we are truly looking at a new era of Cowboys football.

A new era led by much of the same, which is why the Cowboys will continue to be viewed in the same light around the league. In all honesty, this is a team that will likely fall short with Jason Garrett as their Head Coach once again in 2018. Dez Bryant may even score a touchdown against the Cowboys to make matters worse.

The Cowboys ran out of scapegoats for mediocrity a while ago, recycling their ineptitude by branding it under their career 67-53 head coach. A coach that owes a significant portion of his success to Dez Bryant.

Surely, the Cowboys outlook for the future can brighten up following this month's draft. Similarly to last year's approach at cornerback, the Cowboys are confident in their ability to find talent in this year's class of wide receivers.

Adding up to ten new players in the draft only proves further that the Cowboys are a team in transition, for better or worse.

Dez Bryant's supporters can weigh in on which way the team that's now betrayed #88 is trending.

Tell us what you think about "Making Sense of the “Garrett Guys” Behind Cowboys Dez Bryant Release" in the comments below. You can also email me at, or Tweet to me at @SeanMartinNFL!

Born January 28th, 1996- Cowboys Super Bowl XXX. Point Boro Panther, Montclair State Red Hawk, and most importantly a proud member of Cowboys Nation! I host "Upon Further Review" on 90.3 WMSC FM and every Friday from 1-4 PM ET. Twitter: @SeanMartinNFL.

  • GoNavyBeatArmy

    I’m sorry, Bryant’s word is accepted as ‘gospel’? His comments show me that he was paranoid for a long time.

  • Eric wilson

    Agreed. This had been talked about early during last season so you know he had to hear it from somewhere. Once the seed is planted…

  • SmittyW

    Betrayed? This author never interviewed anyone yet he draws these conclusions.

    • Sean Martin

      Watch the Slater interview and check Dez’s Twitter timeline.

      • EverybodyTalks

        Dez made the accusation, saying he was a scapegoat and it was unfair, but never named names, except to say “Garrett Guys”. The rest, as to who are these ‘guys”, is left to speculation and opinion, leading to your article. Again, how was Dez betrayed? His contract was fulfilled. That they could have released him sooner, in itself is business, not betrayal.

  • Chuck Wright

    You lost me at Dez was a Garrett Guy. Which is not to absolve JG and SL for coaching ineptitude (oh how it scared me that SL takes over for JG) but 69 for almost 900 and 6 TDs isn’t that special. Cowboys are better, addition by subtraction. PS, JG owes success to Tony. . . .and a stout OL. . .and great running games. . . .I’ll wager offensive passing production way up this year.

  • John McClain

    Dez is the one who got himself cut. How bout taking a pay cut when you aren’t living up to your contract. 3 years of less than 900 yards plus crying about not getting the ball during a game that we are winning

    • MLV

      Dude, you need to understand that contract was for the years he was all pro, he out preform his rookie deal, they needed to pay like the star he was at that time, his lack of production was not entirely his own, had to play with three of the worst WBs you could imagine Weeden, Cassel, Moore, came back to fast from broken foot, followed by knee injury, trying to get on same page with Dak in two years, oh, change in philosophy, passing team to running team, Facts!

      • alan reyes

        Most of that is true but it also shows that the team was correct to move on . Bryant and Romo grew up together and were exciting but not actually successful. There were a lot of games with 3 TDs and a lot with 3 INTs. In the end, the era had one playoff win and was .500.
        Bryant is now old and done.
        Thanks to Bryant and Romo for an exciting ride and now we start a new era of Dak, Elliott and a new main receiver. Time has moved on.

  • alan reyes

    This writer seems to have an issue with the Head Coach having a say who is on the team. Actually, after ages of Jerry listening to no one, the idea the Head Coach being actually involved is a huge step forward.
    As to Bryant and the Boys, this site is caught up in a fantasy of Bryant rather than the current reality.The Bryant the site sees stopped existing in 2014.

    • Sean Martin

      I have an issue with how this team evaluates talent to reach the point of their Head Coach losing a player like Bryant, who I believe still could have contributed to this team in 2018.

      • alan reyes

        Bryant has been on the market 4 days and no one is signing him. Bryant is convinced and so are a lot of Cowboy fans, that Bryant is still a top receiver. The fact that the league knew for months that Bryant would likely be available and so assessed Bryant but no one is signing Bryant shows that those fans and writers are just overvaluing Bryant.

  • pdstix78

    I think it’s a win for both sides. May serve as some humble pie for him and on the flip side, a change in culture for the Cowboys plus the opportunity for some new blood to step up to the plate

    • EverybodyTalks

      Good point and not just because I agree. Dez made the statement that if he didn’t have an “edge”, he does now. Dez and Romo were dependent on each others skill set, especially when you look at the last couple of years. Dak is growing into the QB position, whereas, Dez and Tony grew into their positions together. Dak was inaccurate at times, but Dez can’t afford to wait on Dak to get better, because he is over the top of his hill. Dez has talent that can be utilized by a more veteran QB. Alex Smith, if he gets picked up by the Redskins, may be the medicine Dez needs to get better.

  • lawrence stacy

    Biased, preconceived article written on the writers personal thoughts. What has happened to responsible reporting?

  • beachbum

    hahahaha, Jerry keeps making changes to everything but the coach and staff. He really believes Garrett can win him that Lombardi Trophy that he has been obsessed with winning since Jimmy Johnsons team left. Hate to burst your bubble JJ, but there is no way Garrett will ever win you a Super Bowl. First off, he’s going to have to win 3 or 4 playoffs games in a row to win it. Yes, he will have to beat 3 or 4 playoff teams in a row to win you your Super Bowl. If you truly believe he can do that….he’s your guy.

  • oneputter

    Complete BS on Dez being released. He was the scapegoat for everything that happened last season. Everyone’s production was down last year because of the OL problems, the RB problems and the QB problems. You have a TE that is no longer capable of opening up the middle of the field (for the last 2 yrs), let alone running a route beyond 15 yds but Dez gets released. You have an QB that has problems reading defenses, has problems with footwork, has problems on when to throw the ball, has problems with anticipating routes/coverages but Dez gets released. You have a RB that was suspended, you have back up RB’s with no where to run. You have a #2 WR who drops and body catches more balls than my 8 yr. old, you have a back up WR who can’t figure out the playbook or where to line up, you have a 5’4″ 130lb WR who gets manhandled at the LOS, and you have a rookie who gets no playing time…..but Dez gets released. You have coaches that……well don’t know how to.

    Now I get it, Dez was getting paid a lot of money and his production should have been better last year but it takes a team not just one player to be productive. Did he drop balls, yes he did. Julio had more drops than him and with a much better QB!

    Hopefully they have a plan ( i doubt it) but hopefully they do. There is no rookie who can come in make things instantly better. It takes a rookie WR 2-3 yrs at this level and we never play rookies so here, maybe 3-5.

    Once again, great job Jones family! you guys are real winners.

  • Ddenney1

    Dez has lost a step since his foot injury and NEVER ran good routes. He caused trouble on the side lines and cost way too much money for his work the last 3 years!!! I predict he will sign for a lot less money some where and have a couple of fair years and will be gone from NFL!

  • Dave

    I thought this article was all about Dez but half way through it, the writer starts his assault on HC Jason Garrett. So, for the hundredth time, let me explain the Jason Garrett situation. NO ONE ELSE OF SUBSTANCE WILL COACH DALLAS! No coach is going to subject himself to the Jerry Show! Jason does this and he does it very well. It’s not fair to attack/insult Coach Garrett.

Star Blog

Will Terrance Williams’ Run Of Bad Luck Continue?

Brian Martin



If Suspended, Will Cowboys Cut Ties With Terrance Williams?

To say that Terrance Williams has had a run of bad luck recently would be an understatement. First he breaks his foot, which kept him out of all of the offseason practices so far. Then, he ends up getting arrested on an intoxication charge, a Class C misdemeanor, on May 19 after crashing his Lamborghini into a light pole. Unfortunately for him, his bad luck could continue with training camp approaching because he could be looking at a demotion.

As things stand right now, I have a hard time seeing Williams being any more than the fourth wide receiver on the Dallas Cowboys depth chart. I have him behind Allen Hurns, Cole Beasley, and rookie Michael Gallup (in that order) right now, possibly falling even further. For now, I'll pencil him in at WR4 though.

I believe a lot of Dallas Cowboys fans wouldn't be too terribly upset if we don't see a lot of Terrance Williams in 2018. Fans have been unhappy with Williams for quite some time and many voiced their displeasure when the Cowboys signed him to a contract extension last offseason. But, he is still on the roster, which means we should probably expect him to stick around for at least one more season.

There is a cloud still hanging over Williams' head though. His intoxication arrest is still an open case and the league could decide to discipline/suspend him for breaking the NFL's conduct policy. That could impact his availability to start the season, which could ultimately determine where he exactly fits in on offense in 2018.

I know, it's a lot to take in, but that's how things stand right now and I don't things get much clearer when training camp gets underway. But, let's try to dive into this little deeper to try to determine what to expect from T-Will this year.

Did Terrance Williams' Big Game Quiet His Doubters?

Dallas Cowboys WR Terrance Williams

As I mentioned earlier, I believe Hurns, Beasley, and Gallup are the top three Cowboys receivers this year. If that proves to be true, Williams is looking at demotion. He may be nothing more than an insurance policy in case of injury.

Terrance Williams does have something going in his favor though. He has the coaching staffs trust, which means he could reprise the same role we have seen from him in the past. But, that's where his potential suspension comes into play.

If Williams is indeed suspended, that would give more opportunities to other WRs on the roster to prove themselves, particularly Michael Gallup and Noah Brown. I think these are the two receivers who could have the biggest impact on Williams' offensive role this season.

Gallup will without a doubt receive every opportunity to prove he's ready to hit the ground running as a rookie. I think he will be successful, which is why I have him ahead of Williams on the depth chart to begin with. Noah Brown on the other hand is the wild card here.

I'm a big fan of Noah Brown's. I believe he can adequately replace Williams as both a receiver in the passing game and as a blocker in the running game, something the coaching staff really values about Williams. I think he has a chance to leapfrog T-Will on the depth chart, but he's really going to have to have a good training camp to do that.

Having said all that, I still don't know exactly where Terrance Williams will fit offensively for the Dallas Cowboys in 2018, but I think his bad luck will continue. I think he should probably just be an insurance policy in case of injuries, but will have to wait to see if the coaching staff agrees.

Do you think Terrance Williams' bad luck continues?

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Star Blog

Alternate Universe: Where Would Cowboys Be With RB DeMarco Murray?

Kevin Brady



Cowboys Blog - Dez Bryant To DeMarco Murray: "Come On Home" 1

During the Spring of 2015 the Dallas Cowboys faced what most considered a difficult decision.

Following an unexpectedly successful 12-4 season in which the Cowboys won just their second playoff game since 1996, two of the team's main offensive weapons were set to hit free agency.

On one hand was wide receiver Dez Bryant, coming off of a career year and widely considered a top wide out in this talent-rich league. On the other hand was running back DeMarco Murray, also coming off of a career year in which he led the NFL in rushing yards.

Could the Cowboys afford to pay the somewhat aging running back in this NFL economy? Could they place a premier price tag on a wide receiver despite their run-first, ball control mentality?

Of course, this wasn't exactly an either/or situation, but the Cowboys did re-sign Bryant to a lucrative deal and allowed Murray to walk to Philadelphia.

Now Fast forward to 2018.

Neither Murray nor Bryant are on the Cowboys, Tony Romo is broadcasting for CBS, and Dallas has spent a top five overall pick on replacing Murray at running back.

DeMarco Murray announced his retirement from football last week, making much of Cowboys Nation (including myself) think back upon those Romo-era teams.

And it's really hard not to wonder, where would the Cowboys have gone if they decided to keep DeMarco Murray? Where would they be had they re-signed Murray, rather than spending a premium pick on Ezekiel Elliott a year later.

If we're being honest, Elliott is a much more dynamic runner than Murray ever was. He brings more explosion and reliability to the offense, and is arguably the best back in football. Even when Murray was the league's leading rusher, this really couldn't be said about him.

There's not much of a chance that DeMarco Murray would still be a productive RB1 in Dallas heading into 2018. His play significantly dropped over the years in Tennessee, even behind their solid offensive line.

Of course the value of the running back position has been devalued as of late, making the Cowboys selection of Elliott a questionable one to some around the league. Paying the league's leading rusher what they would've had to pay him back in 2015, however, would have been even more questionable.

Plus, the Cowboys were able to replace much of Murray's production in 2015 with Darren McFadden, even if the team didn't win nearly as many games.

There might be an alternative universe out there where Tennessee's Murray and Derrick Henry-led backfield existed in Dallas, but Cowboys fans are certainly not upset about having Ezekiel Elliott in a Cowboys uniform.

Even if it took them a top five pick to seal the deal.

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Star Blog

Considering an Earl Thomas Extension, Age is just a Number

John Williams



Dallas Cowboys Wishlist: 2018 Free Agency Edition
Andy Lyons/Getty Images

When people consider whether the Dallas Cowboys should trade for Seattle Seahawks' Safety Earl Thomas, one rebuttal fans throw out there is his age, and for good reason. People get concerned about handing out contract extensions to players entering their age-29 season.

In the salary cap era of the NFL, it typically isn't good business to pay age as the team often doesn't get the value out of the player that the contract expects.

One position where I feel that isn't necessarily the case is at the safety position. Let's consider Earl Thomas' accolades for a moment and see if we can find some correlations.

Earl Thomas, in his eight-year career, has been to the Pro Bowl six times, missing out his rookie season and in 2016 when he only played 11 games. He's been selected to the NFL All-Pro's first team three times in consecutive years from 2012 to 2015.

So, let's go over to our friends at Pro Football Reference and see which other safeties have been to the Pro Bowl at least six times and have been selected as a first team All-Pro player three times.

Here's the list:

Considering an Earl Thomas Extension, Age is just a Number

The first thing you'll notice is the elite players on the list along with Earl Thomas. The likes of Rod Woodson, Ed Reed, Brian Dawkins, Troy Polamalu, Aeneas Williams, and Charles Woodson. Those are just the players whose career extended into 2000s.

Then if you consider Ronnie Lott and Cliff Harris, that's some amazing company.

The players with an asterisk are the players that are in the Hall of Fame. Reed, Polamalu, and Woodson will be in the Hall of Fame. Cliff Harris not being in the Hall of Fame is still an NFL injustice that needs to be righted as he was one of the key cogs to the success of the Doomsday Defense of the 1970s.

I know Deion Sanders is on the list, and he's only there because he did play some safety toward the tail end of his career, but we know that it was as a corner that Deion made his money. The key though is that Deion's switch to safety at the end allowed him to prolong his career.

Removing Earl from the discussion for a moment, the average length of the careers of the men mentioned above was 13.41 years. The longest career was Charles Woodson at 18 years followed by Deion at 17 and Brian Dawkins at 16 years. The shortest careers were the 10-year careers of Cliff Harris and Joey Browner.

So, if Earl Thomas, having played eight years, played to the short end of the career length, he'd still have another two years left, this season included. If he played to the average length of those listed above, he'd have another five years left.

Considering that half of the players listed above all played longer than the average, there's a good chance that Earl Thomas has another six to seven years left in his career.

So, when we think about an extension for Earl Thomas, we have to consider the fact that for someone who has had the career that he's had to this point, he's going to be able to play at a good to great level for the life of a four-year extension.

Earl Thomas is an elite player and is on track to one day be considered for the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

If the Dallas Cowboys could add that to their young and developing defense for the next four years, they shouldn't worry about his age.

Obviously, anything can happen, and people may point to him missing games in each of the last two seasons, but prior to 2016, Earl Thomas played and started 100% of his team's games. That's a six season stretch of being available for every single game.

For a team that is really close to contention and has the makings of an elite defense, Earl Thomas could be the missing piece that could put them over the top, much like Charles Haley did for the Dallas Cowboys' dynasty of the 1990s.

Don't let the age thing distract you from adding one of the best safeties in the NFL and one of the best players in the league. Earl Thomas to the Dallas Cowboys just makes too much sense not to do it, and for the All-Pro safety, age is just a number.

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