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Tom Jackson: Dez Bryant threw fit because he realized he’s not as good as Calvin Johnson

Dez Bryant Jason GarrettThere has been a ton of analysis regarding Dez Bryant’s sideline outbursts on Sunday during the Dallas Cowboys’ 31-30 loss to the Detroit Lions. Many of the Cowboys coaches and players defended Bryant, saying the behavior was just a manifestation of the receiver’s passion for the game. Others says it’s immaturity and that he needs to grow up.

Everyone with an opinion has weighed in. But one person whose explanation was different and made some sense to me was Tom Jackson’s.

Speaking on Monday Night Countdown on ESPN, Jackson said he felt Bryant threw a fit on Sunday because he was being upstaged by Calvin Johnson. Recall that in the week leading up to the game, Bryant praised Johnson for being the best at what he does, while also saying he can do what Megatron does.

[Related: Dez Bryant and Jason Witten fight on sidelines (GIF)]

“I believe I can do whatever he can do,” Bryant said on 103.3 FM ESPN in Dallas last week. “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.”

Jackson referred to those comments when he said Bryant got a rude awakening.

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Tom Jackson to John Madden: ‘Take that, Fat Man!’

I’m just finishing up John Madden’s book One knee equals two feet and I came across a story that was pretty humorous. Keep in mind this book was written in 1986 so the story is much funnier now that both became big time analysts. Madden was talking about certain opponents when he got to this part regarding All-Pro linebacker Tom Jackson of the Broncos:

“Tommy Jackson of the Broncos wasn’t very big, but he was a quick linebacker before there were quick linebackers. And he was the wildest linebacker I’ve ever seen. You never knew where he was going to turn up. He was tough, but not disciplined, which made him that much harder to figure out. Against a disciplined linebacker, you knew that if you did this, he would do that. But with Jackson, you had no idea. One time he might run in there, the next time he’d run out there. And for some reason he didn’t like me.

“Take that, fat man,” he would yell.

He was the only player who ever yelled at me like that. Of course, he usually yelled when the Broncos were winning, especially when they were winning in Denver.

In Oakland, he never yelled much.”

I’d love to ask Tom Jackson about that story now to see what he says. Who knows if it was just an intra-divisional competition thing or a personal thing. I’m guessing it’s the former considering division rivalries still exist and I’m also figuring Madden is including the PG version of the story. By the way, if you really miss Madden’s analysis since he’s retired, One Knee Equals Two Feet is a fun read. Despite being almost 25-years-old, it’s not out-dated but rather a good history lesson (or refresher if you enjoyed that era of football).