Dez Bryant

How Matt Cassel once ticked off former Cowboys teammate Dez Bryant

How Matt Cassel once ticked off former Cowboys teammate Dez Bryant

Matt Cassel played on six different teams during his 14-year NFL career, so he's had his fair share of different teammates.

But one particular teammate that stands out to the ex-New England Patriots backup QB is former Dallas Cowboys star wide receiver Dez Bryant.

Cassel was Bryant's QB for nine games on the 2015 Cowboys squad, one of those being a matchup late in the season vs. the Washington Redskins. Before Sunday's Pats-Cowboys game on Patriots Pregame Live, Cassel told a great story about how he got on Bryant's nerves in that Redskins game.

"I give him credit. He's the ultra competitor," Cassel said of Bryant. "But if you're talking about a wide receiver that fits that mold of kind of that prima donna 'I'm going to go out and I want the ball,' that's him.

"Great example of this would be, we're playing the Washington Redskins on Monday Night Football. It's early in the game, first quarter and the next thing I know they're bringing a big blitz. I tried to get the ball out quick to Cole Beasley. Couldn't do it, but I didn't throw it to Dez. Dez thought, obviously, I should've thrown him the football.

"With that being said, we come over to the sideline. I'm sitting on the sideline and I see Dez. He's taking off his shoes and he is hot. He's hot that I won't throw him the rock. And I'm sitting there and I'm looking at my coordinator Scott Linehan and I said 'Scott, I think we've got a problem. Our starting X receiver is taking off his shoes and we still have three quarters to play.' Thank God he came back in and made a few big plays down the stretch. Maybe he was just stretching out his feet, but I really think he was mad at me."

Watch the full video above to hear the full story.

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Dez Bryant weighs in on Kareem Hunt situation: 'Team Kareem'

Dez Bryant weighs in on Kareem Hunt situation: 'Team Kareem'

Dez Bryant is on "Team Kareem" after running back Kareem Hunt was released on Friday.

Hunt was cut by the Chiefs after a disturbing video surfaced of the 23-year-old assaulting a woman back in February. Bryant shared his reaction to the news on Instagram where the former Cowboys wide receiver stated he "cares to know more than the video" and that he supports Hunt. 

See the Instagram posts below:

As expected, Bryant received a fair share of backlash for the post and thus deleted it shortly thereafter.

Bryant signed with the Saints earlier this month, but his comeback was put on hold after tearing his Achilles during practice.

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Why Corey Coleman and not Dez Bryant for Patriots?

Why Corey Coleman and not Dez Bryant for Patriots?

FOXBORO - So, you're asking yourself, the Patriots were willing to bring in a once-traded, once-cut wide receiver -- about whom the most positive thing reported in the past couple months was that he was the owner of a majestic sneaker collection -- and not Dez Bryant? 

The Patriots have actually imported two wideouts while Bryant remains a free agent: Corey Coleman, sneaker-head, and Bennie Fowler. But Coleman is the headliner, a top 15 pick of the Browns in 2016, so let's focus on him at the moment. 

Why him and not Dez?

We don't know exactly what Bryant is looking for financially so we'll put that aside for now. He obviously is open to the idea of playing with Tom Brady and under Bill Belichick. 

To me, this could serve as a referendum of sorts on how the Patriots feel about Bryant's skill set at the moment. 

When I asked around in the preseason if Bryant's name had been bandied about at One Patriot Place as a potential option to help the team's numbers at receiver, I was told no. Not yet, at least. 

At that point, the Patriots had parted ways with Malcolm Mitchell, Jordan Matthews and Kenny Britt. Since then, they've acquired and released Chad Hansen. They've seen Amara Darboh quickly come and go. They've released Riley McCarron, signed him to the practice squad, promoted him to the active roster and cut him. They've worked out veteran slot Kendall Wright. 

Nick Caserio and his staff have been searching wherever they can for receiver help, and the rest of the league knows it. 

Still... no Dez.

I've heard from one NFC coach that Bryant's drop-off in terms of skill set is not to be ignored. That, to me, is key. 

At this point, the Patriots would probably be willing to put up with some level of knuckleheaded-ness if it meant meaningful, talented depth. Particularly if that talent was stretching the field. 

But that's not Bryant. Not anymore, at least. 

The Patriots have several intermediate and short pass-catching options on the roster right now. 

James White, Rex Burkhead and Chris Hogan all fit that bill. Phillip Dorsett was a 4.3-second 40-yard dash guy in the draft a few years ago, and he still has very good speed, but his average depth of target against the Texans on Sunday was 7.29, and he was targeted on a variety of in-cuts, speed-outs and quicker-hitting plays. 

While Rob Gronkowski is a big-play machine, he's not a classic down-the-field threat. 

Without more speed on the field, teams can do what the Texans did at times Sunday -- flood the middle of the field with defenders and goad Brady into going deep with lower-percentage throws. 

Gronkowski made Houston pay with routes down the seam, but those may be passes that the Patriots want to limit since catches that area of the field can lead to high-speed collisions. Rob Ninkovich pointed that out on Monday Night Patriots this week, calling that area of the field a "danger zone." Gronkowski's torn ACL in 2013, his monster collision with Earl Thomas that eventually ended his season in 2017, and his concussion in last year's AFC title game, for example, all came down the seam. 

A deep threat outside of Gronkowski? That's where Coleman could come in. 

Though he wasn't shown in the greatest light on HBO's "Hard Knocks", something Coleman pointed out after he was traded to Buffalo, and though there may be some questions about his personality fit in New England -- as there would be if Bryant was brought to Foxboro -- he still has the juice to draw safety attention.

Coleman ran a 4.37-second 40 coming out of Baylor and back then drew some comparisons to Steve Smith for his combination of speed and big-play ability despite his size (5-foot-11).

He's not guaranteed to contribute. And he may be one of the next to get a quick look, a pat on the back, and a farewell. But for all he's lacking in terms of a proven track record, Coleman has one thing Bryant doesn't, which helps explain why he's here and Bryant's not.