Dallas Cowboys

Dez Bryant returns to practice, understands conservative approach

Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant (88) catches a ball in practice Wednesday.
Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant (88) catches a ball in practice Wednesday. rmallison@star-telegram.com

Dez Bryant is back, at least on the practice field in some capacity.

The All-Pro receiver returned to practice on a limited basis Wednesday, the first time since injuring knee Sept. 25 that he worked in individual drills.

“It felt good,” Bryant said. “Of course, it’s something minor. But at the same time, even if I didn’t go Sunday, this is much needed. I need to get that work in and I need to be ready to go whenever I get back. So it was much needed.”

The Cowboys’ 4-1 record combined with next week’s bye could factor into the team holding Bryant out until the Oct. 30 game against the Eagles. While Bryant wants to play, he also understands the conservative approach after not playing a single game at 100 percent last season because of foot, ankle and knee injuries.

“Don’t have to worry about making it worse, which I feel like I can’t at this point,” Bryant said of the possibility of sitting a third consecutive week. “It’s only getting better. What we’ve got going on here is extremely amazing, and you don’t want to force anything.”

Bryant has a hairline fracture in the tibial plateau of his right knee. After spending two weeks on the StairMaster, the elliptical and the underwater treadmill, Bryant was excited to get back to running.

Bryant called his status “day to day” and said how he feels Friday will determine whether he plays Sunday against Green Bay. If Bryant doesn’t play, he again will serve as the team’s biggest cheerleader in his sleeveless hoodie that has become a good-luck charm.

“Anytime you feel like you have a chance to do anything great, you want to be patient,” Bryant said. “You want to take your time. You want to get everything right. You don’t want to be back and be half-stepping. You don’t want to be doing none of that. If I play, I’m going to be rocking and rolling. I’m going to be going full speed.”

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