Saturday, July 21, 2012

Romo must be wise when he talks about Dez - Fort Worth Star Telegram

lebreton Don't worry, everyone. Tony Romo has Dez Bryant's back.

Clearly, Romo has uttered a plethora of ill-advised things during his eight years with your Dallas Cowboys, but this latest observation by Dimples the Quarterback might be the most poorly advised of all.When asked last week by ESPN's Ed Werder about teammate Bryant, charged with beating and threatening his mother -- his mother -- Romo said, "The one thing I know is that Dez knows I have his back ... Dez knows that I'm going to stick up for him."Tony Oh-No strikes again.I think I know what Romo meant to say about Bryant, whose family violence case now goes to the Dallas County District Attorney's office.I also think Romo in no way condones such an indefensible act as striking your mother.But he should have said so.What about the person with the bruises and the fear that compelled her to dial 911?Who has Angela Bryant's back?Sadly, the victims tend to frequently get overlooked in domestic violence incidents. Maybe even more so when the accused family member is a high-profile Dallas Cowboy who shared a difficult upbringing with the mother he is accused of hitting.For the proper response, Romo needed only to mimic what his buddy and tight end Jason Witten said when asked about Bryant."I support him as a teammate," Witten told "Obviously, he's a good young man that's going to be a phenomenal football player, and I was saddened to see that."I don't know enough about [the case] to really comment much more than that."Well said. Back to the practice range.Instead, unlike Witten, Romo came across as if he was condoning mother-beating.I think I understand what he was trying to do. But if he was just trying to be the good general, Romo stumbled on that, too.Bryant's problems are the team's problems. The depth chart at wide receiver should tell Romo that.The Cowboys can't afford to see Dez Bryant suspended for three or four games, a distinct possibility as NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell continues to revel in his new union-sanctioned power.If recent months have taught pro football fans anything, it should be that Goodell will not hesitate to discipline the hired help for its transgressions.And while the family members may patch things and publicly declare that it was all a misunderstanding, dropping charges in a domestic abuse case is up to the state of Texas, not the victim.Can the Cowboys get by for a few games with Kevin Ogletree as their No. 2 receiver?Romo should be angry at Bryant, not sympathetic toward him. Bryant's absence could easily end up affecting the team's won-lost record.The Cowboys have tried it the other way -- calling the defeats a "lesson learned," promising to get better -- and it hasn't been working.How's about a quarterback that demands a fulltime commitment to getting the franchise back to a Super Bowl? How's about the team leaders holding everyone accountable?Bryant's rough childhood deserves some sympathy. But what does that have to do with hitting your mother? Even more, what does Angela Bryant's arrest record have to do with being hit enough times to call the police? Shame on you, if you think (or wrote) that this somehow excuses Dez.We've heard from Romo, but it's time for Owner Jones to step in and announce that Bryant is suspended from the team pending the outcome of the case. If Bryant is allowed to be in training camp, a brief drive down the road from Hollywood, a media frenzy will ensue.And Romo again will be asked what he thinks of Dez Bryant's latest screw-up.He'd better have a better answer than he did last week.Gil LeBreton, 817-390-7697Twitter: @gilebreton

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