By Ashley Dunkak
ALLEN PARK (CBS DETROIT) – It all started when fourth-year Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant apparently would not concede that Detroit Lions superstar Calvin Johnson will be the best target on the field when the teams meet Sunday.
“Truth be told, I don’t compare myself to nobody,” Bryant said on 103.3 FM ESPN. “I think Calvin’s the best at what he [does]. I think I’m the best at what I do.”
“I believe I can do whatever he can do,” Bryant said, prompted to list what Johnson can do that Bryant cannot. “I think it’s just a pride thing. When it comes to football, just being on the field, it’s a mindset and having a mentality. I honestly believe when I’m there, I’ll be feeling like there’s nothing I can’t do. Whatever the coaches ask me to do, I’m going to do it.”
Detroit’s number two wide receiver Nate Burleson, who is currently recovering from a broken arm, gave plenty of credit to Bryant for his talent, but he made it clear that in his mind Johnson is by far the best.
“I like Dez,” Burleson began. “I think he’s one of the best receivers in the game right now, very talented – fast, big, strong. He possesses all the tools to possibly be as good as Calvin, but he’s not Calvin Johnson.
“No way, no how,” Burleson added. “Sorry Dez. Keep it real.”
Johnson, who missed the Green Bay game and played sparingly against Cleveland, looked back to form Sunday, when he torched Cincinnati for 155 yards on nine catches, including a leaping grab in the end zone in triple coverage.
Rarely at a loss for words, Burleson took a moment to express his reaction to Johnson’s highlight-reel play.
“He’s a living legend,” Burleson said. “Every day is a joy for me. Most of the guys, and I think most of the people, and fans, they might appreciate it more when he’s gone. That’s why I always talk about him – because I really want you to watch this guy. That stuff he does is great, the big-time plays, but he’s even a better person. He’s the most humble dude I know. He’s a living legend.
“The stuff that he is doing, you’re not going to see it often after he’s gone, so enjoy it now,” Burleson added.
Bryant – who apparently has had his ear to the ground, so to speak – might have learned a lesson about letting his actions speak instead of getting too run away with his words.
I see I have to be extra careful about what I say
— Dez Bryant (@DezBryant) October 22, 2013
When talking about a player who will likely go down as one of the best ever, yes, Dez, you probably do.