Cowboys Exclusive: Dez Speaks Out
In early March, in a one-on-one visit with Dez Bryant, the Dallas Cowboys’ All-Pro receiver told me that he was separating from long-time adviser David Wells. He said then that he preferred to “not make a big public deal’’ of the decision.
But now, Wells has apparently told his side of the story to ESPN and to the Dallas Morning News. And Bryant is firing back, angered by the suggestion that he’s being manipulated by anybody and amused at the idea that Wells has anything to do with the player’s negotiation toward a “Cowboys For Life’’ contract.
“I’m the one making the decisions on who to trust and who to be surrounded by,’’ Bryant says. “I’ve surrounded myself with people who I think deserve to be trusted.''
And I first reported on 105.3 The Fan, Bryant tells me he’s been contemplating this breakup since last October, when he asserted more authority in how his money was being handled and spent. He also strongly disputes the claim, seemingly suggested by Wells to ESPN, that “the move could complicate long-term negotiations between the player and the Cowboys.’’
“That’s laughable,’’ Bryant says. “That’s (agent) Tom Condon’s job.’'
Indeed, there continues to be public and media confusion about who plays what role in Bryant’s professional life — but Dez sees no confusion at all. Condon (one of the most high-powered and respected names in the business) is his agent. Roc Nation is in charge of marketing with a big-picture idea of Bryant’s future. Michael Jordan has taken him under his wing and is a role model. And David Wells — who to his credit has a “particular set of skills’’ along with a long-time association of performing Cowboys-associated tasks for the Jones ownership family
Wells’ long-time relationship with the Joneses does muddy the waters here … but, in Bryant’s eyes, on a personal level only, not on a professional level. ESPN’s story mentions that Wells believes he has a binding “adviser agreement’' with Bryant that runs through 2016 and that he "would consider terminating the contract if Bryant's attorneys pay off the remaining amount he is owed.’’
That’s the bottom line here, and it goes back to Bryant’s decision to change agents in October, to rid himself of some of his “entourage’’ and to be more in tune with where his money is going. (That decision to rid himself of hangers-on is almost certainly at the core of the bogus “Dez Walmart Unicorn Video,’’ with disgruntled former members of his circle wishing to cause him harm.)
Dez Bryant seems tired of being the rope in a tug-of-war. In his view, he’s simply taking a firm grip of both ends of that rope himself.
“That’s it,’’ Dez tells me. “The rest of this (story) is just more bulls——.’'
* Our Cowboys-centric "Mock Draft'' is here.
* How close were Dez and the Cowboys on an October deal? The scoop.
*Cowboys draftnik? Please read "The Cowboys' Six Tells and Tendencies in the Draft.''
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