Fundamentally people don’t change who they are at their core. They either adjust their ways subtly or become better liars.
Subtle change is important, as you get older and more mature you think a little more about the decisions you are making. You make wiser decisions, like when you want to hit your mother, you realize that might not be a good idea. With athletes, sometimes it is just about fooling the media.
Dwight Howard and Tiger Woods prime example of athletes who were nothing like their public personas. They weren’t even close, but the media just went along with it. Dez Bryant is a freakishly gifted athlete, but has he really changed? What do you think?
“I found myself,” Bryant said, via ESPNDallas.com. “I’m comfortable with my life. I’m enjoying being in the NFL. I wish it could’ve been a couple of years back, but I had to go through a couple of things to figure it out. I think I got it and I’m just more focused on my job and doing what I love to do and that’s playing football.”
“Listening and looking at people who do it right,” said Bryant when asked what has helped him turn a corner in his life. “When I was younger it wasn’t like I was acquainted with all that stuff. I wasn’t used to it. I had to get around people who do it right and I feel like that’s been my stepping stone, these older guys.”
As a Football player I believe this to be true. At some point last year the light switch on and Bryant became unstoppable on the field. He was like a Young Terrell Owens when he got his hands on the ball. Off the field though nothing has really change. He is still in the club drinking heavily, having issues with his lady friends and still a candidate to be on ESPN BROKE 2 if he isn’t careful. He is still extremely sensitive to criticism of any kind and will say inappropriate things in public. I prefer to give athletes the benefit of the doubt, but many things he said in the above quote, has been contradicted by many people in Dallas, who hang out with Bryant on a regular basis.
The question begs has he subtly changed enough, that he doesn’t allow what is happening off the field affect him on the field or has he just become a better liar? Only time will tell.