Dez Bryant can attend meetings

Updated: December 10, 2010, 2:34 PM ET
By Todd Archer | ESPNDallas.com

IRVING, Texas -- Dez Bryant is allowed to attend meetings after all, but that does not mean the rookie will be at all of them.

Dallas Cowboys coach Jason Garrett clarified the point in Friday's news conference after saying Thursday that league rules prevent Bryant from attending team and individual meetings while he is on injured reserve.

"You cannot be involved in the physical activities," Garrett said. "You can attend meetings, team meetings and position meetings."

Most of the rehab work with the athletic training staff for players on injured reserve, however, takes place when the healthy players are in meetings. Bryant had surgery for a fractured right fibula Monday that he suffered on a kick return Dec. 5.

"Philosophically what we want to do with our injured reserve players -- and we have five of them right now -- is to make sure to get them healthy," Garrett said. "Logistically and philosophically what we try to do with them during that time is that's where they get most of their rehab done. That's what works best for us."

With the separate rehab times, the training staff can keep injured players who are healthy enough to continue to play on a schedule that allows them to meet and practice. Players on injured reserve typically come in earlier for their rehab and leave before practice starts.

Bryant will need three to four months of rehab. Garrett said injured players do not travel to road games, although Tony Romo has been to the three away games since breaking his left collarbone.

"Tony Romo is a little bit of an exception because of the position he plays," Garrett said, "and he has a role for us on Sundays."

Romo spends time with Jon Kitna in between series, talking about certain plays and defensive coverages.

Garrett said he wants Bryant to remain "engaged" with the team even if he cannot play. The time off will allow Bryant to get more familiar with the playbook, although Garrett said he disagreed with the notion that Bryant struggled with the mental side of the game.

Bryant caught 45 passes for 561 yards and had eight touchdowns in his rookie season but he had a difficult time staying healthy. He suffered a high right ankle sprain in training camp and missed five preseason games.

He played in 12 regular-season games but aggravated the high ankle sprain during the year and sprained his left ankle Dec. 4. He also had rib and back injuries.

Todd Archer covers the Cowboys for ESPNDallas.com. You can follow him on Twitter or leave a question for his mailbag.

Todd Archer

ESPN Dallas Cowboys reporter

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