Not Discouraged By Week 1 Setback, Dez Shows Up In Washington Win

LANDOVER, Md. – It wasn't hard to find Dez Bryant this time around.

One week removed from a near no-show against the Giants, the All-Pro receiver jumped off the stat page against the Redskins – 12 targets, seven receptions and 102 yards.

It was a far cry from his one-catch, eight-yard outing in Week 1, but Bryant said not much changed during the Cowboys' preparations for their Week 2 clash against Washington.

"It was the same attitude, same mindset, same approach as the first," Bryant said. "Didn't think too high, didn't think too low – just kept my mind level. That's how I'm going to be throughout this whole year, and that's how the rest of the guys are going to be."

Bryant is right about that part. Throughout the past week, the Cowboys affirmed their commitment to their offense. They never bought into the suggestion that they make changes to accommodate their star receiver – it'd simply happen naturally.

Cowboys coach Jason Garrett repeated that mantra on Sunday when he was asked about getting Bryant more involved.

"Dez is a guy, since he's come into this league that has gotten a lot of attention in every game played, since I've been around," Garrett said. "We just try to get him the ball.  He's a playmaking-type player."

Dak Prescott felt similarly – pointing out that Bryant had some near-misses that prevented him from playing a larger role against the Giants, such as the reversed call on his second-quarter touchdown. With confidence that they didn't need to make changes – the Cowboys didn't.

"Honestly, I don't know if there was anything special we did," Prescott said. "We just moved him around, I guess you can say, from the outside to the inside a couple of times, but we run the same plays we've been running since the beginning of training camp. Nothing has changed in that matter, he was just on the good end of it."

Still, it had to be encouraging to see the type of security Bryant can provide for a rookie quarterback. Of his seven receptions, three of them came on third down – and all three of them led to conversions.

He also showed his penchant for explosive plays, as five of his seven catches went for 15 yards or more.

"With Dak being as amazing as he is, you've got to come through for a guy like that," Bryant said. "He's well-respected throughout this whole locker room, throughout this whole organization. He's filling in some big shoes and he's doing a damn good job."

Perhaps the only disappointing thing about the entire outing was Bryant's lack of contact with Josh Norman. Despite a week's worth of hype about the impending rematch from last Thanksgiving, both teams stayed true to their word.

Norman didn't shadow Bryant around the field, as many speculated. They only lined up on a handful of snaps throughout the afternoon – which didn't leave much room for much talk about a feud.

"We did exactly what we was going to do in practice," Bryant said. "We didn't make it a one-man show, a two-man show between me and Norman. We played our game just like they played their game."

Instead, the show revolved around Bryant making catches on a variety of routes, coming from a variety of formations, helping the Cowboys convert 50 percent of their third downs and pile up 380 yards in the process.

"It feels good, you know," Bryant said. "I think the beautiful thing about everything is that everybody didn't overreact – we just played ball."

The approach might have been the same, but the outcome was clearly different – which can only be a good thing for the Dallas offense.

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