Two weeks ago, the Dallas Cowboys first round pick from 2010 and prolific “full of potential” starting WR was charged with Class A Misdemeanor family violence in Desoto, TX. Dez (allegedly, as his lawyer would say) struck his mother with a baseball cap in the face, and in the process of grabbing her, ripped her shirt and/or bra.
This turn of events is quite frustrating and disappointing coming from the standpoint of a Dallas Cowboys fan. This was billed to be the off season that young Bryant’s head was tightened straight, and that the only incident we would hear about would be a minor scuffle between him of rapper Lil’ Wayne in a Miami nightclub. Bryant was two weeks shy of getting into training camp controversy free. Since the incident, a warrant was issued for Bryant’s arrest, Bryant turned himself in, and shortly thereafter posted bond. The District Attorney has received the case and will determine if charges will be filed against Dez Bryant. His mother, 37 year old Angela Bryant (the alleged victim), has submitted an affidavit of non-prosecution stating that she does not wish to press charges against her 23 year old son.
However, in Texas, it is not entirely up to the complainant to press charges, and the State can bring charges against Dez if the State feels that pressing charges are warranted. In a press conference yesterday, Dez and his mother appeared, but did not answer any questions as a prepared statement was read by his counsel, Royce White. In an effort to attempt to clear the air, Dez Bryant has done little to clean up this mess. Bryant did not answer any questions at the advice of his attorney, which only leads to further questions, and no appearance of clairvoyance.
Regardless of whether Dez Bryant is charged for allegedly striking his mother, Dez needs to get on a plane, perhaps Jerry Jones’ plane, and head to NFL Headquarters to speak with NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. Because of the powers vested in Roger Goodell by the NFL Players Association and the current CBA, Goodell has sweeping and total control over any NFL imposed penalties under the Personal Conduct Policy. Meaning, if Goodell thinks that Dez has caused enough trouble and has not represented the NFL to the high standards at which it holds its’ players, then Goodell can penalize Dez with fines and even suspensions. To prevent that, Dez needs to speak with Goodell on the matter, and show that he is taking responsibility for his actions.
Additionally, to take responsibility, he needs to go to the District Attorney and “man up” to whatever actions he may or may not have comitted. Not only will it show that he doesn’t believe he is “above the law” because of his status as an NFL player and celebrity, but it will also show that he is taking a proactive step towards fixing whatever issues that exist in his family life, or with his emotional health. His legal counsel, Royce White, stated in the prepared statement that Dez and his mother believe that this is a family matter, not a legal matter, that can be settled through counseling and not the legal system. If Dez did in fact strike his mother, or become physically aggressive towards her at anytime, taking responsibility for his actions will be the only way that he can show that he is maturing as both a man and an NFL player. It might mean countless hours of community service, counseling, and possibly fines and jail time; but that is what needs to happen so that he can leave his history of a shattered home behind him, and started building his own home and family, and become a role model for his community.