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Exclusive: 'I Know Jerry's' Heart,' Says Dez Bryant - 'He's No Racist'

Dallas Cowboys Exclusive: 'I Know Jerry Jones' Heart,' Says Dez Bryant - 'He's Not A Racist'

FRISCO - Dez Bryant's passionate public position on Dallas Cowboys leadership involving itself in the national movement against racism and social injustice is about "education and understanding,'' Bryant tells "It's not about me suggesting Jerry Jones is a racist. I know Jerry's heart - he's a compassionate person and he's not a racist.''

On Sunday, former Cowboys receiver Bryant used Twitter to cite a trio of big-name Cowboys leaders, saying someone should have guided them to the Austin protest rally.

"Somebody should have brought Jerry Jones, Stephen Jones and Jason Witten to this protest down in Austin,'' Bryant tweeted. "This is not a policy change; this is a heart change. And yeah, I said it.''

A column reflecting on that remark - and on the ensuing "Let's unite'' exchange with Witten mentioned, "The issue is sensitive enough - and Bryant's tweet is just vague enough - to trigger endless assumptions.''

And now Bryant, while traveling back from Austin to Dallas following his presence at the march, is sharing with those reflections.

On Jerry Jones' "heart'': "I have love for Mr. Jones. Almost everything I know about business - and of course I'm still learning - I learned from him. But I believe this is a time, right now, where Mr. Jones could learn some things, too. To learn about the culture.''

On Stephen Jones' inclusion: "I've seen some of the other coaches and GMs from other teams start to reach out, and even march. I think that will help those teams in the locker room and on the field - for players to know that the boss is at least trying to understand.''

The Cowboys as an organization have released a video expressing support for the movement against racism and social injustice; Jerry and Stephen Jones have yet to comment personally, however.

On including Witten in his tweets: "Witt and I have had a great relationship for a long time. We've talked, over the years, about every single thing you can imagine, including stuff like this. I didn't single him out for a negative reason; I singled him out because he's a leader who can learn.''

After Bryant's tweets, Witten responded.

"Dez,'' Witten wrote on Twitter early Monday, "When I saw your tweet, I tried to call you. I don’t know what you’re feeling, but I do know what I stand for and believe in. I believe it’s time for change. I believe we must all listen. I believe together is the way. Let’s unite and impact change together. Much Love.''

We suggested here that Bryant's April 2018 release has not created animosity between him and the Joneses, but did create a wedge between him and (then-coach Jason) "Garrett Guy'' team leaders - like Witten. But Bryant tells us now that Witten (now playing for the Raiders) is included in his thoughts here not because of bitterness from conflict, but rather because of the authority held by the future Hall-of-Fame tight end.

"Anybody who is open to listening and open to change, I'm still his brother,'' says Bryant, who is planning on phoning Witten on Monday evening. "I'd like to tell Witt what I'm telling you: He can't know what it's like being a black man walking into a restaurant, and only feeling accepted because he's an athlete. I don't know that Witt can know that. Or that Jerry or Stephen can know it.

"I want them to listen to us telling them that.''

Bryant, presently out of the NFL but mapping out a comeback, prides himself on his frankness. For that reason, he has no regrets about what he's saying ... while at the same time wishing to make sure his words are understood.

"I've tried to understand Jerry's background, Stephen's background, everybody's background,'' Bryant says. "But are they are trying to understand ours? I'm not saying, 'Come walk in a march' to call anybody out; I'm saying 'Come walk in a march so you can, well, feel it.''

Bryant believes the New Orleans Saints locker room (which he was a part of briefly two seasons ago) will be strengthened, not weakened, by QB Drew Brees' comments about protests that triggered a discussion between him and black teammates. And as that relates to Dallas?

Bryant mentions the Jones family's financial motivations as one of the reasons the Cowboys have been a "stand-for-the-anthem'' franchise - and he understands that. But in addition to that reality of the world, and in addition to seeking a deeper understanding of one another, he cites for us another reason he'd like to see the Jones family participate in a march against social injustice.

"If Jerry did that, those guys in that locker room at The Star - knowing what he might be changing and might be sacrificing - would run through a brick wall for him,'' Dez Bryant tells us. "Jerry does that, he might just win another Super Bowl because of it.''