Mercurial wide receiver Dez Bryant is scheduled to visit Cleveland Thursday for a meeting with the Browns that anyone who enjoys the NFL should hope results in a contract between the two.
That makes the Browns a story, and the NFL could use a few more of those. Male sports fans are reluctant to admit this, but dramatic interpersonal relationships play a large (if not always articulated) role in what makes this stuff so good, and anybody who doubts that hasn’t seen web traffic numbers on NBA content.
The NFL has some of that, but paranoia about “bulletin board material” pervades the sport and keeps the public at arm’s length. As a result, NFL narratives are mostly pre-fabricated around squishy ideas like “Is Joe Flacco elite?” without ever getting into who these guys really are or what challenges they’re really facing.
But both Bryant and Mayfield are blessed with a fearlessness that makes them great players, and also extends to their dealings with the public. It could not help but be fun for all of us. I mean, this could be really good.
And it ought to be good for the Browns too.
There’s the obvious good of adding a talented veteran receiver to a team with a rookie quarterback, regardless of how many times coach Hue Jackson says Tyrod Taylor is the starter. And then there’s the sensation that the Browns are on the way to an identity, come what may.
So everybody just be cool and don’t mess this up.