Jerry Jones excuses Dez Bryant

Updated: April 30, 2011, 2:56 AM ET
By Calvin Watkins | ESPNDallas.com

IRVING, Texas -- Dallas Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones said Friday night he didn't speak with wide receiver Dez Bryant and blamed himself.

Jones had said Thursday evening he would speak to Bryant on Friday about a variety of issues and expected the wide receiver to get looked at by the medical staff. It didn't happen.

Jones said he got too busy with the draft and labor issues and couldn't clear his schedule to speak with Bryant. Yet Jones defended Bryant for not being at Valley Ranch. At least 20 players visited the complex to workout on Friday, including Tony Romo, Kevin Ogletree, Andrew Sendejo and the bulk of the offensive line.

"We had the good communication that I wanted to have," Jones said about his Thursday night conversation with Bryant. "It would have been redundant [to talk again Friday], that's why we did talk. We had a real good talk yesterday and that's where I like to leave it."

Bryant, like other players who are rehabbing, has been in communication with team officials through a third party and coach Jason Garrett said those players are recovering well.

It seemed as if Jones was caught off guard by the discussions surrounding Bryant, his talented yet troubled wide receiver who received a criminal trespass complaint for causing a disturbance at a Dallas mall, and has been sued for nearly $800,000 by three creditors, in which he's repaid roughly $246,000.

Bryant has said he's enjoyed talking with new wide receivers coach Jimmy Robinson and new strength and conditioning coach Mike Woicik.

Friday was a day for Bryant to visit with those men again, but it didn't happen and now with the lockout back in effect he won't see them at all.

"We don't know what his schedule was since certainly two days earlier he hadn't planned to be here," Jones said. "He might have planned to be on the other side of the country, this was kind of an impromptu day for most of the people to be here."

One player who did show up was tackle Marc Colombo, who might get released when the 2011-12 league year starts.

The Cowboys drafted Tyron Smith, a tackle from USC, and he's being projected as a right tackle.

"[Colombo] just does his work," line coach Hudson Houck said. "It never came up, but it's a business."

Calvin Watkins covers the Cowboys for ESPNDallas.com.

Calvin Watkins joined ESPNDallas.com in September 2009. He's covered the Cowboys since 2006 and also has covered colleges, boxing and high school sports.

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