OXNARD, Calif. – Tuesday was a typical day at training camp for Dez Bryant, filled with mesmerizing catches and stunning displays of athleticism that have become routine for the Cowboys' No. 1 target.
The Cowboys' top cornerbacks didn't back down from the challenge, though. Bryant had to fight for every reception he brought down in 1-on-1 drills against Morris Claiborne, and Bryant credits the top two corners for making him the receiver he's become.
The talented receiver has particularly high expectations for the second-year cornerback the Cowboys pitted him against throughout Tuesday's practice.
"I love going against those guys," Bryant said. "Those are two great corners. I'm lucky to go against two guys like that, because they're great, especially Mo. He's going to mess around and be one of the best corners in this league."
Claiborne's got a long way to go to fulfill those expectations, but Claiborne already said he feels much more confident and comfortable compared to where he was at last year. He said he wakes up every day and feels like he can compete with the best.
He also put on strength in the offseason, working out enough to where he could feel comfortable competing against stars like Bryant every day.
"Dez is going to be Dez," Claiborne said. "He's going to have that mentality that no one can stop him, and if you do stop him, you didn't stop him. He's just got that mentality."
Claiborne also knows he has to have the same mentality, and it can't waver even if he gets beat.
"It makes both of us great," Claiborne said. "Going up against him each and every day -- it doesn't matter if you have tight coverage, he'll still come away with the ball. It just makes us both better, and I believe we're competing at a high level."
Bryant never slighted Brandon Carr with his compliments about Claiborne. He said the expectations on the Cowboys' coveted free agent pickup from last season are naturally high already. [embedded_ad]
"They're both physical," Bryant said. "Brandon Carr, he's already one of those top guys. I feel like you guys will be talking about him a little more this year, because he is that great player. I feel like by me going against them every day, that only makes me better, and it makes it that much more easier for me when I go out there and play each and every Sunday."