Dez Bryant will be Top Free Agent Wide Receiver in 2015

posted in: Dallas Cowboys, Featured | 21
Share Button

Dez Bryant amassed 93 receptions for 1,233 yards and 13 touchdowns in 2013. There was a time in the NFL when 1,000 receiving yards in a season was a great achievement. There was much more emphasis on ground and pound smash mouth football back then. Now days it’s expected.

Dez Bryant

In the modern NFL, Dez Bryant’s 1,233 yards was good enough for 13th in the NFL last season. However, he was tied for 3rd in touchdowns with the 49ers’ Vernon Davis. The Saints’ Jimmy Graham (with 16) and the Broncos’ Demaryius Thomas (with 14) were first and second respectively. Calvin Johnson, Brandon Marshall and Julius Thomas all came in tied for 4th with 12. Josh Gordan, who led the entire NFL with 1,646 receiving yards, came in at 11th with 9.

The mind boggling  part is, The Denver Broncos had 3 receivers in the top 10, (once you include Eric Decker) who amassed 11 touchdowns to go along with his 1,288 receiving yards. What do all of these numbers have to do with Dez Bryant you ask? One of the most talked about subjects among Cowboys Nation is a new deal for Dez Bryant. There will be more than 50 free agent receivers in 2015. I compiled a list below of the notables. (The list is in no significant order).

  • Wes Welker
    Roddy White
    Reggie Wayne
    Michael Crabtree
    Demaryius Thomas
    Jordy Nelson
    Jimmy Graham
    Jordan Cameron
    Andre Johnson
    Chad Johnson
    Brandon Lloyd
    Jeremy Maclin
    Mario Manningham
    Robert Meachem
    Hakeem Nicks
    Sidney Rice
    Eddie Royal

(Where would you place Dez Bryant on this list?) I have him as number one.

The Million dollar question (literally) is, how much is he worth? Basically, whatever the highest bidder wants to pay him. The more important question is: how much is he worth to the Cowboys? The next important question is: how much will the Cowboys’ salary cap situation allow them to pay him? (Keep in mind, Tyron Smith needs a new deal as well).

According to ESPN analyst Todd Archer,

“There are six receivers in the NFL earning more than $11 million per season. Does Dez Bryant join that list with Calvin Johnson, Larry Fitzgerald, Percy Harvin, Mike Wallace, Dwayne Bowe and Vincent Jackson? Do we need to point out the new deal DeSean Jackson signed with the Washington Redskins is worth $8 million annually?”

 

dez bryantPersonally, I think Jerry Jones needs to be smart about this despite the rank I place on Dez Bryant. The Cowboys are already cap strapped and Tom Brady, among other notable quarterbacks, has proven you don’t need big name high dollar receivers to win in the NFL as long as you have a decent offensive line that gives the QB time to make good reads and opens up running lanes, which in turn sets up the pass. Lets be honest here, Michael Irvin didn’t get anywhere near as many targets as Dez Bryant, but because they had a solid running game and a stout offensive line, it set him up for the big plays.

The Patriots let Wes Welker walk rather than give him the big pay day, and still went deep in to the playoffs. NE understands that when you have too many high paid players you have to go short at too many other positions to afford them. This is why they are relevant every year, have 13 consecutive winning seasons and the Cowboys have been 8-8.

The Cowboys are still lacking severely on defense. Tyron Smith is an integral part of the Cowboys offensive line and needs a new deal. After all, history has taught us that receivers are a dime a dozen, but Pro Bowl offensive linemen are few and far between. In fact, there have been many receivers who entered the league as undrafted free agents and became all pro players.

It is also a proven fact that if a quarterback has time in the pocket, any NFL starting receiver can be dangerous. If it comes down to the Cowboys having to sacrifice two or three other positions in order to afford Dez Bryant,  (especially considering his back issues) I say use the franchise tag on him in 2015 and let him prove he is worth that big contract. There have been too many players in the recent history of the Dallas Cowboys that had a great contract year and then fell off the minute they got paid.

What worries me the most, is the fact that Jerry Jones is more worried about selling jerseys than he is about winning. That being said, Dez Bryant sells a lot of jerseys. I have never known Jerry Jones not to over pay if he wanted to keep the player. How much do you think Dez Bryant is worth per year to an already cap strapped team? $3-5 Million per year, $5-7 million per year, $7-10 million per year, or over $10 million per year? My thought is anymore than $5-7 million per year and the Cowboys will have to go light elsewhere. My guess is it will be the same place they have been taking short cuts for years, and that’s the defensive line. I don’t care how many weapons you have on offense, if your defense can’t get to the QB or stop anyone, it’s useless.

 

Share Button

  • californy

    I think Dez will make in the area of 11-13 Million a year, that a problem. I like yout number better but I dont see Dez settling for less than what he can get in the open market. One of these 2 player will get tag.. My guess it will be Dez. If I had a choice to only keep one it would be Tyron.

  • californy

    I was studying Dez number too, I think he came in 6 best in TD, 11 best in yardage, and 13 in reception. I dont know what that means but I bet Dez and his camp are going for a salary in the top 5 In the nFL.

  • californy

    I was studying Dez number too, I think he came in 6 best in TD, 11 best in yardage, and 13 in reception. I dont know what that means but I bet Dez and his camp are going for a salary in the top 5 In the nFL.

  • californy

    I hope this year we dont go for the deep ball, that would mean more hits on Tony and more interception too. The slants and more YAC would work for me.

    • I am all for the WCO type short passing game and mix that up with some ground and pound

  • Gabriel Carrasco

    I like Dez, but at this point, who do you want? Because Tyron is going to be making a lot of money too, if he replicates last season, you can expect Joe Thomas type money, maybe more, since he is younger than Thomas was when he got his contract.

  • Gabriel Carrasco

    I agree WR are a dime a dozen, but at the same time he is a dynamic player, who opens things up for guys like Williams and Beasley. Not only that, last year, Dez was targeted even more than Witten. The next QB after Romo who knows, he is going to need a WR as well, who can help him out early on. It’s a tough decision to have to make.

    • he was targeted too much so defenses keyed on him. He also had a lot of drops and ran routes wrong. We were so bad on 3rd down because they tried to force it deep too often.

  • Gabriel Carrasco

    Tony Romo has shown he can work with guys like Ogeltree, Hurd, Crayton, Holley, and Robinson and do well. So it depends.

  • Alexander James

    Can anyone honestly imagine Jerry letting Dez walk out that door after this season? I see Dez signing a huge extension early part of the season with a built in restructure in the offseason similar to Romo’s deal.

    • Gabriel Carrasco

      I don’t think anyone wants Dez to leave, but it is a simple matter of team identity. Dez will command and rightfully so around 10 million per season if not more. Tyron Smith will command 10 million per season if not more. Then you probably want Travis Frederick to stay too he will command around 5 million per season if not more. Then Zack Martin will be good, and he will command for a good OG around 6-7 million per season if not more. If you add up those numbers 10+10+5+7=32 million dollars in a total of 4 players all of which are on offense, and we didn’t even include the QB. It’s foresight, something this team hasn’t had. If we keep Dez great, but is it worth the price, if it costs us two other players? But Dez is elite, and he should be paid like an elite player, but we don’t have to be the ones to do it.

      • Gabriel Carrasco

        The Patriots understand how players get paid, WR, CB, QB are the most paid positions in football. The Patriots have no one of note at WR right now, nor have they ever really had. They understand paying for an elite WR means going light elsewhere. There is a reason why the Patriots are at the top, and in the NBA the Spurs are on top, because they know that paying for players will hurt your team eventually.

      • Very well said.

      • Alexander James

        Dez is not worth the price, and my opinion there is not a reflection on him, rather about our offense in general. What good is a $10 million premier WR when Defenses can double & triple him every play because we do not force them to respect the run?
        Jerry will probably try to keep around the good young talent, regardless of expense- that includes Dez. That means next season Carr’s 12.7 mil will most assuredly be a cap cut along with Free’s $11 mil. Then will Witten at $8.5 get the D-Ware treatment? That’s $32.2 million not counting any penalties which is right in line with your estimate .

    • No, but that’s why the Cowboys have 1 playoff win in 18 years. Jerry is still trying to buy a championship. Smart GM’s are not in cap hell all the time. They have a balanced team and not most of the cap going to only a handful of players.

      • Alexander James

        Jerry likes to go for the ‘big splash’ rather than sensible moves. As long as he’s making bank I cannot foresee a change in that ideology. Any decline in revenue from the Cowboys will be more than made up with all the events at AT&T stadium. There were over 100k people for George Straight and in Jan 2015 it will host the BCS national championship. I think the only thing that would get him to even consider a change in that ‘buy a championship’ philosophy would be a total revolt by the fan base.

  • californy

    Here r the NFL top wr base on Salary in 2014

    Calvin Johnson at Wide Receiver $16,207,857
    2
    Larry Fitzgerald at Wide Receiver $16,142,857
    3
    Mike Wallace at Wide Receiver $12,000,000
    4
    Dwayne Bowe at Wide Receiver $11,200,000
    5
    Vincent Jackson at Wide Receiver $11,111,111
    6
    Percy Harvin at Wide Receiver $10,707,500
    7
    Brandon Marshall at Wide Receiver $10,000,000
    8
    Andre Johnson at Wide Receiver $9,685,714
    9
    Greg Jennings at Wide Receiver $9,000,000
    10
    Victor Cruz at Wide Receiver $8,600,000