Bryant, Jones remain on radar
The Browns remain interested in former Dallas wide receiver Dez Bryant while managing without Josh Gordon.
Bryant emerged as a possible backup plan for Cleveland after Gordon stepped away from the team to receive treatment to address his health associated with a recovery from drug addiction. The Browns don’t know when Gordon will be back, and in the interim they have discussed signing the temperamental Bryant, who spent eight sometimes combustible seasons with the Cowboys.
Following Friday’s practice, Browns coach Hue Jackson would not comment on whether Cleveland’s interest in Bryant has progressed to contract talks. On Wednesday, general manager John Dorsey said Bryant was under consideration.
“We are always looking for good players,” Jackson said. “We can’t get enough of those kind of guys, guys that can make plays with the ball. John is going to keep churning this thing as much as he can, keep finding talent and then see if it fits for us.”
The 29-year-old Bryant, a three-time Pro Bowler, could help the Browns offset a prolonged loss of Gordon. But until they know more about Gordon’s situation, the team may not want to make any substantial commitment to Bryant.
And while the Browns discuss adding him, Bryant gave Cleveland and any other suitors more to think about with a Twitter rant aimed at the Cowboys on Friday. The team declined a $5.5 million option on Bryant in April, dropping him for salary-cap considerations.
Earlier this week, Cowboys executive Stephen Jones said in a radio interview that quarterback Dak Prescott had it tough last year “with (at)DezBryant in his ear.”
Bryant fired back with several profane tweets.
In their search to upgrade their roster further, the Browns hosted former Washington cornerback Bashaud Breeland and former Cincinnati cornerback Adam “Pacman” Jones on Friday. Neither player signed, but they are both under consideration.
Blank backs players in anthem dispute
FLOWERY BRANCH, GA.
Falcons owner Arthur Blank believes players should have the right to speak out on important issues even though he isn’t expecting national anthem protests from his team this season.
Blank says just like last season, Falcons players have been asked to stand for the national anthem.
He said the Falcons are “very committed to the military.” He also says he believes players have “very significant rights” and appeared to say he wouldn’t fine players for exercising those rights.
Blank said players should be allowed to make their own decisions on what he described as the “complex issue” of standing or kneeling for the national anthem.
“So if you have players who still feel that’s the way they have to express themselves, they will,” he said, adding “I don’t think you’ll see” protests.
“But it’s far better in my opinion to have somebody make those decisions themselves than to hit them over the head with a hammer,” he said.
Blank’s comments came as the NFL and NFLPA, the players’ union, held what they said in a joint statement was “a constructive meeting” about the anthem policy. They said their talks will continue.
Last season, two Falcons defensive linemen — Grady Jarrett and Dontari Poe, now with Carolina — knelt during the anthem before the team’s game at Detroit on Sept. 24. After the game, coach Dan Quinn described the action as a “one-off.”
LOS ANGELES RAMS
Team will wear classic uniforms in five games
The Los Angeles Rams listened to their fans and ramped up their use of their classic blue-and-yellow uniforms.
The Rams will wear the franchise’s classic uniforms in their final five home games at the Coliseum this season, chief operating officer Kevin Demoff announced Friday to a thrilled throng of Rams supporters at training camp.
The franchise has received intense calls from their Los Angeles fan base for the restoration of the famous jerseys ever since the team returned to California in 2016. Demoff says the Rams talked to the NFL and got approval to wear them in five of their seven home games.