Christmas has come early for the Dallas Cowboys offensive line.
Ten games into the NFL season, the group has already received a heaping of enviable gifts: iMac computers from running back DeMarco Murray, Louis Vuitton bags from quarterback Tony Romo and now, retro Air Jordans from wide receiver Dez Bryant.
The 26-year-old Pro Bowler, who is tied for fourth in the NFL with eight touchdown receptions, presented the Cowboys' blockers with their own pairs of Air Jordan 14 Retro sneakers, sized 13.5 to 17.
"They been ballin’, man," Bryant told reporters. "I feel like I stay swagged up, so they deserve to be swagged up, too. There you go. That’s what it’s about."
— Clarence Hill (@clarencehilljr) November 12, 2014
The Cowboys' offensive line is a big reason for the team's offensive upgrade. One year after the team finished 24th in the NFL with an average of 94 rushing yards per game, that number has jumped to an average of 153.2 through 10 games. Only the Seattle Seahawks get more yards on the ground.
And the Cowboys' players aren't the only ones recognizing the big guys up front for their production. On Oct. 12 left tackle Tyron Smith became the first offensive lineman in a decade to win an Offensive Player of the Week award.
While the price of the shoes is unclear, on Nike's website a similar model is being sold for $170. That would mean the total value of the five pairs is $850. Add that to the roughly $22,500 in gifts from Romo and Murray, and the Cowboys' offensive line has had more than $23,000 spent on it this year.
Bryant has an endorsement deal with the Jordan Brand, so he likely didn't have to pay for the kicks.
Bryant's gifts this week were overshadowed by his ongoing contract negotiations with the Cowboys. He can become a free agent after this year, and while most believe he'll stay in Dallas, he and the team haven't been able to come to terms yet.
"You know, it’s not about the money," Bryant said, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. "It's not about none of that. I just feel like a little respect should play a factor in that. I love it [here]. I really do. But every day you grow. Let’s see what happens. It's all about respect. It’s all about respect. I am a very loyal person, but just don’t test my loyalty."
Bryant reportedly wants a deal that includes $13 million per year and $30 million in guaranteed money. So far the best offer from the Cowboys has been 10 years, $114 million and $20 million guaranteed.