Though he’s officially listed as questionable, the Dallas Cowboys believe Dez Bryant is ready to “break out” Sunday night against the Philadelphia Eagles, according to ESPN’s Todd Archer.
“There’s a feeling from Bryant that he is about to break out” as he returns Sunday from a tibial plateau fracture in his right leg that sidelined him for three games.
“He’s healthy,” Archer said. “Maybe more importantly, he’s happy.”
Bryant said he hasn’t “lost a step as far as conditioning.”
“You know, see me, I’m not a good exaggerator,” he said. “I say what I mean. I mean what I say. It was minor. I feel good. Just can’t wait to get back out there.”
A healthy, happy Dez Bryant typically equates more production on offense for the Cowboys. That’s certainly what we’ve seen in the past when the dynamic receiver was paired up with Tony Romo.
However, it’s not exactly what we’ve witnessed this year when he played with rookie Dak Prescott. In three games, Bryant caught just 11 passes for 150 yards and one touchdown. Prescott showed some good chemistry with Bryant during the preseason but tended to look to Cole Beasley as his primary target in the passing game during the regular season games in which Bryant participated.
Dallas’ offense right now is currently a run-first behemoth that has racked up the third-most rushing yards in the NFL leading up to its Sunday night showdown at home against Philadelphia. Ezekiel Elliott led the league in rushing before DeMarco Murray’s big outing Thursday night and has averaged 117 yards per game.
In fact, there are some, including former quarterback Donovan McNabb, who believe the Cowboys would be better off without Bryant (more on that here).
Because Prescott doesn’t force the ball to Bryant, it seems unlikely that he will be busting out with a 10-plus reception, 100-plus yard, multiple-touchdown effort any time soon. But there can be no doubt having him back in the lineup will open things up for everyone else even if he doesn’t, including Elliott and Prescott as they attack teams on the ground.