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Lamar Jackson: Ravens 'Knew How Much' Beating Cowboys Meant to Dez Bryant

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistDecember 9, 2020

Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Dez Bryant works out prior to an NFL football game against the Dallas Cowboys, Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2020, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)
Nick Wass/Associated Press

Dez Bryant starred for the Dallas Cowboys during the prime of his career, and a chance to go up against his old team as a member of the Baltimore Ravens was a major storyline for Tuesday's contest.

And then he revealed he tested positive for COVID-19 and was pulled from the field while he was warming up.

That apparently served as motivation for the Ravens during their 34-17 win, as quarterback Lamar Jackson told reporters, "We got to win that game for him because we knew how much it meant to him."

Notably, Bryant also tweeted, "Yea I'm going to go ahead and call it a quit for the rest of the season... I can't deal with this" but was happy with the win:

Dez Bryant @DezBryant

Great team Win!!!

Dez Bryant @DezBryant

🙏🏿 https://t.co/Z2qSFGr9Uu

He also suggested this contest was personal for him, adding "I wanted to make a point":

Dez Bryant @DezBryant

This was more than just another game for me... It wasn’t about revenge.. I didn’t need a catch... I wanted to make a point...

Baltimore had little trouble without its wide receiver thanks to a strong rushing attack.

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Jackson threw for two touchdowns and ran for another, while Gus Edwards (101 rushing yards) and J.K. Dobbins (71 rushing yards and one touchdown) completed the impressive backfield trio. Jackson's touchdown pass to Marquise Brown opened up a two-score lead in the third quarter, and the game was never truly in doubt down the stretch.

Bryant has just four catches for 28 yards in three games with Baltimore, but before joining the Ravens he had not played a game since his time with the Cowboys ended in 2017.

Tuesday would have been a chance for the three-time Pro Bowler to go up against a poor Dallas defense and perhaps resemble the playmaker he was with his old team. Instead, there are now questions about if and when he will return to the field at all.

Jackson is at least somewhat familiar with what the receiver is going through seeing how he tested positive for COVID-19 as well and missed a contest against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Yet he looked impressive upon his return Tuesday and moved the 7-5 Ravens within one game of the final AFC playoff spot. 

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