Who's to blame for Bryant's problems?

Who's to blame for Bryant's problems?

Published Jul. 20, 2012 2:12 p.m. ET

Since learning of Dez Bryant's Monday arrest and alleged domestic violence incident that took place Saturday at his mother's home in DeSoto, many have speculated about who deserves blame for Bryant's problems off the field.

In a Thursday column by Berry Tramel of The Oklahoman, former NFL wide receiver Bryan Gilmore places some of that blame on former Cowboys cornerback Deion Sanders.

Gilmore, a Lufkin native like the Cowboys wide receiver, said he tried to act as a mentor to Bryant after meeting him as a high school senior. But that changed and the contact stopped after Bryant met Sanders during his time at Oklahoma State, according to Gilmore.

"If you want to call out someone, call out Deion Sanders," Gilmore said. "He didn't even call me after that. I personally tried to keep him away from that."

Gilmore played eight seasons in the NFL from 2000-2007, bouncing around from the Cardinals, Dolphins and 49ers. He finished his career with 53 receptions, for 794 yards and five touchdowns.

Being associated with Sanders played a role in Bryant being suspended during his junior year at Oklahoma State. Bryant lied to NCAA investigators about his relationship with Sanders and was suspended for the final 10 games of the 2009 season as punishment.

The two haven't had the same relationship since. Last year, Sanders told local Dallas radio stations that Bryant needed help but insisted that the talented receiver didn't want that assistance from the Hall of Fame corner.

"Nobody really knows that this kid has been like homeless," said Gilmore, who stated that Bryant was living with a girlfriend's uncle when the two met. "Enough is enough. Somebody needs to intercede. I still love him and I'm praying for him. He really is a good kid. This is disturbing."

Follow Jon Machota on Twitter: @jonmachota