(The Root) — Maybe the side effects of NFL football are getting to Dez Bryant. Maybe he suffered a concussion that went undiagnosed last season. Or maybe he fell and bumped his head while engaged in some other activity.
Whatever the case, something's wrong with the Dallas Cowboys receiver if he thinks that attacking one's mother is ever OK. It's bad enough for a man to assault a woman — any woman — but it's especially egregious when she's the one who gave birth to him.
Bryant was arrested Monday in DeSoto, Texas, on a misdemeanor charge of assault after getting into an argument with Angela Bryant. She had called 911 Saturday afternoon to report the incident involving her son, indicating that this wasn't their first altercation.
"I can't keep letting him do this," Angela Bryant said on the call, made from a nearby friend's house. "I can't keep letting him do me like this. I'm tired. I'm going to put an end to it today. I'm going to put an end to it today. I'm tired."
According to the police report, Bryant allegedly grabbed his mother by her T-shirt and hair and "hit her across the face with his ball cap." Her T-shirt and bra were allegedly torn during the incident. Bryant turned himself in after a warrant was issued for an arrest, was booked and released on a $1,500 bond.
"It's pretty straightforward," said DeSoto police Captain Ron Smith. "Him and his mom got in an argument. She had some injuries. We made an arrest."
Bryant's character was questioned when he entered the draft out of Oklahoma State in 2010. Unfortunately, he's done little to prove that those questions were unfounded. The Cowboys took him with the 24th pick — much lower than he would have gone otherwise — and a string of off-field incidents, though relatively minor, have followed since.
Granted, he comes from a hardscrabble background that includes living with various relatives and friends while growing up. Angela Bryant, a teenage mom, admits that she sold drugs to support Bryant and two younger kids and went to jail for 18 months when he was 10. During a predraft interview with the Miami Dolphins, Bryant reportedly said that his father was a pimp and his mother worked for his father. That led to General Manager Jeff Ireland's infamous question about Angela Bryant's profession.
Last month the 23-year-old receiver indicated that he was more mature this season, more responsible and respectable. "I feel like I have learned a lot from all aspects, on the field, off the field," he told the Associated Press. "I see a lot of things more clear now, and I'm more confident in everything that I do. On the field and off the field, I try to make the best choices possible, and I feel like I'm doing a great job of that."
Not after Saturday's alleged event, which was unacceptable and reprehensible. He's got to do much better than that.