Coach Jason Garrett struck the right chord in giving the first public statement by the Cowboys on the family violence charge against troubled receiver Dez Bryant.
Garrett said he spoken with Bryant a number of times since his arrest last week for allegedly assaulting his mother. He said the Cowboys are not only looking for Bryant but also his mother and plan to support both of them.
He said the Cowboys have always understood Bryant came from a challenging up bringing but that is no excuse for bad behavior.
He also said while Bryant has made a lot progress he still has a long way to go.
“We are going to help him in any way we can,” Garrett said. “Anybody who knows Dez Bryant’s story and knows our team understands he comes from a challenging background. He has had a difficult road to get to where he is in his life. There is no excuse for anything that has happened in his life. You can’t go back and say I came from this back ground. That is not what we are saying. We understand what that is. We understand as an organization how we can try to help him.
“He has made a lot of progress since he has been here with the Cowboys both as a person and as a player. He has long way to go just like we all do. We are going to try to help him do that. What he needs to know is we support him. We support his mom. We support his family in the situation he is in. We are going to try to help him in any way we can.”
Garrett said the Cowboys are still investigating the situation and couldn’t comment on any discipline but counseling was definitely an avenue the Cowboys would pursue for Bryant.
"We believe we have as good of a players assistance program in all of professional sports," Garrett said. "We believe it’s really, really important to help our players in every way that we can. We’re well-staffed in that area. We believe in counseling for people who need it. we try to do that for all of our players. Dez will be a part of that and we just want to help him. We have great resources. We embrace the opportunity to help him. We’ve done that in the past with other players. With dez, we’ll continue to do that."
Garrett said the Cowboys don't believe this will be a distraction for Bryant heading into training camp.
"I think a lot of people who are in our business understand the importance of mental toughness and focus and you have to do that," Garrett said. "Players and coaches in the NFL are people. When we have issues that come up in our lives we have to be able to handle them and still be a pro in handling the task at hand. We expect Dez to be on the plane going out to Oxnard on Saturday with the rest of our football team. we’ve had a great off-season. we’re excited to get started for training camp."