Dallas Cowboys: Is it time to bench Dez Bryant?

LANDOVER, MD - OCTOBER 29: Wide receiver Dez Bryant
LANDOVER, MD - OCTOBER 29: Wide receiver Dez Bryant /

Dez Bryant was once again invisible in another Dallas Cowboys’ blowout loss. Is it time for the wide receiver to ride the pine?

The Dallas Cowboys were dominated on their own turf by the San Diego Chargers, 28-6, on Thanksgiving day, which extended the Cowboys losing streak to three games. Not only have the Cowboys not won since Ezekiel Elliott began his suspension, but it hasn’t even been close.

The Cowboys have lost by totals of 20, 28 and 22, and look like a shell of the team that went 13-3 last year for the number one seed in the NFC. While injuries have and Zeke’s suspension have played a role in their downward spiral, a lion’s share of the blame has to go on both the coaching staff for not making the necessary adjustments, but also the players who were expected to pick up the slack. Particularly, on offense.

Dak Prescott has been dreadful since Zeke went out, and now has six turnovers in his last two games. While Dak certainly deserves his own fair share of the blame, his receiving core hasn’t made life any easier for him.Particularly, Dez Bryant.

Bryant has been a no-show on offense all season long and has yet to record a 100-yard receiving day, despite being Prescott’s most targeted receiver for most of the year.

While the two have never had much chemistry since Prescott made his way into the starting lineup, their connectivity might be at a career low. Bryant wasn’t even targeted in the first half of Thursday’s game and finished the contest with a meager three receptions for 37 yards. He’s also gone a career-worst 5 games without a touchdown reception.

While Prescott obviously deserves a chunk of the blame, it’s easy to see Bryant isn’t the same receiver he was a few years ago. At 29 years old, he just doesn’t get the same amount of separation he once did. Despite owner Jerry Jones declared Bryant “is really a better player,” it’s fairly obvious this is not the case.

Sure, Prescott doesn’t accentuate all of Bryant’s talents, but he’s been unreliable as a receiver all year long. The two haven’t been in sync, but Bryant’s output is still alarming more than halfway through the season. He’s averaging a career-low 10.9 yard per reception and just hasn’t been able to get open on a consistent basis. Conversely, Dak has had more success targeting Terrance Williams and, to a lesser degree, Brice Butler, who has at least one 100 yard game under his belt despite limited snaps.

That’s why it’s fair to ask the question if it’s time for Dez to ride the pine. Sure, he’s the highest paid receiver on the Cowboys, as well as one of the highest paid receivers in the league. But he’s just not helping this football team right now.

At this point, the Cowboys might want to roll with Williams and Butler as their primary outside receivers, with Bryant coming off the bench and working mostly in the slot, where he’s had his most success this season.

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Dez Bryant likely won’t like the move, but at this point, the Dallas Cowboys need a major shakeup on offense. And with an anemic passing attack like we saw this Thursday, it’s the only feasible move for Jason Garrett to make.