Dallas Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett said at the NFL scouting combine that the Cowboys "love" Dez Bryant and want him on their team.
Bryant is set to become a free agent, though he has reportedly "all but resigned himself" to accepting the Cowboys' franchise tag this offseason.
The 26-year-old has indicated that he would like to return to Dallas, saying last month that he plans on being with the Cowboys for the rest of his career. With the scouting combine having began Tuesday, his Roc Nation Sports representatives are expected to hold contract talks with Cowboys officials for the first time in months, reports the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Dallas also has 19 other free agents to negotiate with, including running back DeMarco Murray and linebacker Rolando McClain. Garrett called both Bryant and Murray "cornerstone players," but added "the business of the NFL is real."
On Tuesday, Bryant tweeted that the Cowboys aren't as dedicated to him as he is to them.
A report from ESPN's Ed Werder on Tuesday indicated that if Bryant is franchise-tagged, he would get $13 million as opposed to $30-40 million guaranteed from a long-term deal. He also would probably not participate in offseason activities.
Bryant caught 88 receptions for 1,320 yards and a league-high 16 touchdowns last season.
- Molly Geary