slot, when he's off the line of scrimmage and the DB can't bump him, so long as he knows where he is going.
Now that's the part we don't know - yet - about Dez Bryant. How well, as a rookie, will he read coverages? How well will he adjust mid-route to what a defense is doing? How precise will he run routes, you know, be where he's supposed to be when he's supposed to be there.
But he's learning, understanding "right depth" on routes in the NFL is meaningful.
"Today I ran down the middle of the field against man high," he said earlier in the week, meaning the safety was in the middle of the field, "and I went inside. (Tony Romo) told me to stay on the hash. So next time I know."
See what I mean, how quickly he learns these sorts of intricacies will determine just how well Dez is doing.
Oh wait, there is another thing, and again, this is one of those things you can't teach but is easily detectable, even in helmets and shorts after 11 practices: "He likes to play the game," said one assistant. "He likes what he's doing."
Don't take for granted all football players like to "play the game." Football practice is not easy, even without pads. But Bryant seems to be going strong, and even after sort of getting bumped around on a play in practice this past Tuesday, limping off, he got right back on the field and finished the practice. Even participated in a charity basketball game later that night with his teammates, throwing down a couple of jams I'm told.
Says Bryant, "Just knowing I'm a Cowboy, that drives me."
Now prior to the draft, yep, said everyone needed to hit the "pause" button when it comes to Dez Bryant, mostly because of his dysfunctional background and understandable interrupted maturation. And for sure the Cowboys did, probably doing more homework on one guy than they have in some time . . . just in case. And evidently, after watching him in these "underwear" practices the past couple of weeks, other teams certainly hit the pause button, too, because why else would 24 teams have passed on what we've seen . . . so far?
But tell you what, if this continues, and Bryant does what he's supposed to do, acts the part of a responsible NFL player, we might all be pushing fast-forward before very long.
Yep, that's how Dez is doing.