Saints Bryant Football

FILE - In this Nov. 23, 2017, file photo, Dallas Cowboys' Dez Bryant warms up before an NFL football game against the Los Angeles Chargers in Arlington, Texas. A person familiar with the situation says free-agent Dez Bryant and the New Orleans Saints have agreed on contract terms that will add the former Cowboys star to one of the NFL’s top offenses. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity on Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2018, because the roster move has not been announced. (AP Photo/Ron Jenkins, File) ORG XMIT: NYDD229

New Orleans Saints offensive lineman Chaz Green knows what Dez Bryant is like on the football field.

And he knows what Dez Bryant is like in the locker room. 

The two were teammates last season with the Dallas Cowboys.

So Green knows better than most what Bryant, who agreed to terms on a one-year deal with the Saints on Wednesday, brings to New Orleans.

"He's a passionate dude that loves football," Green said. "He's a great teammate who works hard and wants nothing more than to win."

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And the Saints want nothing more than to win, as well.

They've shown it the past two weeks, treating this season like it's fourth-and-inches and they're going for it.

The first down marker is the Super Bowl, and the Saints feel like they are oh-so close to getting there.

It's why they brought in Eli Apple two weeks ago.

And it's why they are now bringing in Bryant midway through the season when they have already shown they are one of the elite teams in the NFL.

The one glaring weakness in the first half of the season was the pass defense, which is why they traded for Apple.

With the signing of Bryant, they address another area that is a weakness (although not as noticeable because of how well Michael Thomas has played all season).

But aside from Thomas, the receiver position hasn't been as stellar as in years past — especially with Ted Ginn Jr. on injured reserve. Tre'Quan Smith has shown flashes, but except for those flashes, the Saints haven't gotten much productivity at the receiver spot.

Need proof?

The team's second- and third-leading receivers in receiving yards and receptions are running back Alvin Kamara and tight end Ben Watson.

So Bryant, a three-time Pro Bowler and 2014 All-Pro, gives the team another threat at receiver. "Can't Guard Mike," as he is known on Twitter, suddenly becomes "even harder to guard Mike."

Drew Brees suddenly has two Pro Bowl receivers in his arsenal to go with his Pro Bowl backfield tandem of Kamara and Mark Ingram.

"Dez has been a really good player in this league for a long time," Brees said Wednesday. "There is certainly a skill set that he has that is going to be beneficial. I look forward to getting to work with him. I look forward to building a rapport with him. I look forward to getting him involved in this offense and him just becoming a complement to all the guys we already have."

In his eight seasons with the Cowboys, the 6-foot-2, 220-pound Bryant had three seasons in which he caught at least 80 passes for more than 1,200 yards. What he brings to the field, lined up with Thomas, could be a defensive coordinator's nightmare.

Of course, the often-volatile Bryant comes with a risk.

His sideline blowups and off-the-field issues during his Cowboys days are well-documented.

So if you've got concerns that Bryant might be a distraction in the Saints locker room — which is as close-knit a locker room as you will find — those concerns are valid.

Green says that shouldn't be a concern.

"Him being a cancer is the last thing I would say about him," Green said. "When I got drafted by Dallas, he was one of the first people who came up to me and showed me the ropes and told me to let me know if I needed anything. My personal experience with him is, great dude, solid teammate."

Signing with a Super Bowl contender is a fresh start for a player looking to show he's still got it. Not having played since last year, Bryant gets to show his worth as he heads back into free agency at the end of the season. Playing with a quarterback as respected as Brees should help.

And here's guessing that Mickey Loomis and Sean Payton did their homework. They wouldn't have signed him if they thought any issues would derail what the Saints have going.

Excited Cowboys detail what Saints are getting in former teammate Dez Bryant: 'Dez is a great player'

Bryant's new teammates believe that, too.

"I was told early in my career that the job of the GM is to make the team as good as they can make it," tight end Ben Watson said. "As a player, you trust that they are making decisions for the betterment of the team. I have great confidence. He wouldn't be coming here if the powers that be didn't think he could contribute and help us win games."

Is it a risk for an if-it-ain't-broke-don't-fix-it team like the Saints, the hottest team in the NFL?

Yes, a small one.

But Bryant brings talent to a receiving corps that could use some help. It was too much for the Saints not to at least give it a try.

It's fourth-and-goal.

The Saints had to go for it.

Follow Rod Walker on Twitter, @rwalkeradvocate.