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Dez Bryant Healthy, But Calls In Sick (Or Didn't Call) To Court Appearance

The Cowboys practice session today was as healthy as it has been at any point in 2011. Dez Bryant, Miles Austin and Orlando Scandrick are all practicing without restrictions for the first time all season.

Only five players were missing from Thursday's practice; DE Jason Hatcher (calf), OG Derrick Dockery (leg), FB Tony Fiammetta (hamstring), K David Buehler (groin) and LB Bruce Carter. Carter has been on the PUP list since training camp and will be eligible to begin practicing with the team after the New England game. The second-round pick will start off on special teams, but could be the coverage catalyst needed to compliment Sean Lee's run stopping prowess at the middle linebacker positions.

For the Patriots, Ben-Jarvis Four-Names-One-Game Green-Ellis was held out of practice today with a toe injury, according to BGE has scored five rushing touchdowns already this season, and would be replaced by interesting rookie Stevan Ridley. Danny Woodhead is expected to suit up, as is Aaron Hernandez who made his return last week against the Jets. Albert Haynesworth is also planning on joining the Patriots buffet defensive line. LB Jerod Mayo is out indefinitely with a knee injury.

Sunday is fast approaching and the Cowboys-Patriots tilt highlights an interesting slate of NFL games. Dallas is going to be the healthiest they've been all year, maybe even as far back as the 2009 season. It would be great if the water cooler talk was about this fact, or the X's and O's for this game. But here comes Dez Bryant and his financial dealings to discuss.

I am all for giving player's passes for whatever transgressions they make in life outside of felonies, because I follow what happens with on-the-field incidents. What a man does outside of the football field isn't my concern. Do I care if Dez Bryant isn't paying his bills? But people love their off-field storylines, and I wish that Dez would stop giving them this ammunition.

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant failed to show up for a scheduled Tuesday hearing to settle a $600,000 debt with a jeweler/ticket broker.

Beth Ann Blackwood, the attorney for Colleyville resident Eleow Hunt, filed a motion in Tarrant County court Wednesday afternoon seeking an immediate hearing to settle the debt.

How much does this affect me? None, not in the least bit. However, this country lives vicariously through it's actors, musicians and athletes, and as such, this becomes newsworthy. Instances of immaturity or financial hardship, rarely tell you everything you need to know about a player, but that doesn't mean people won't talk. As such, Dez needs to handle this situation already.

Photographs by jamesbrandon, jdtornow, phlezk, flygraphix, mcdlttx, tomasland, and literalbarrage used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.