Props to 49ers acting GM Terry Baalke for saying he has no issues with the character of Dez Bryant.
It seems everywhere else you look and hear and read, teams and writers are harping on the Oklahoma State wide receiver's NCAA suspension last season.
What did he do? He spoke to Deion Sanders, his mentor. Then he lied to the NCAA about it because he knew it would get him in trouble under arcane NCAA rules. Sanders is a representative for agent Eugene Parker.
Lemme get this straight: Teams don't want to draft a 6-foot-2, 225-pound wide receiver with great hands and good speed because he spoke to his mentor — one of the most popular players when Bryant was growing up — then tried to protect himself from silly rules?
That's called self-preservation, something that comes in handy when large men with bad intentions come running at you over the middle.
Oh wait, there's also the matter of his growing up. His mother was sent to jail for selling drugs when he was 8 years old. I'm sorry, was Dez Bryant the one in the orange jumpsuit? No.
Bryant is a stud receiver who will make a difference for whichever team has the smarts to draft him.
Words such as "character" get thrown about the sports world this time of year. Every year. Remember Randy Moss dropping to No. 21 in 1998 because of his past legal issues? How did that work out for the Dallas Cowboys and the 19 other teams ahead of the Vikings?
Or Warren Sapp dropping to No. 12 in 1995 because he smoked some weed in college? Eight Pro Bowls, one Super Bowl and 96.5 sacks later, how many team executives are ready to admit they did the same thing when they were in college?
You can make the argument that those were somewhat legitimate issues, should you choose to operate in a world where college kids always make the right decisions when thrown onto a plot of land with no parents and thousands of kids of the same age.
But what exactly did Dez Bryant do wrong to warrant dropping off teams' boards and taking pot shots in the "Comment" column of online mock drafts?