By ROBERT BERMAN and JOHN DAVENPORT | Staff reporter Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant and defensive tackle DeMarcus Ware are still waiting to hear the first news of their futures with the team, but the two have been linked in recent days.
Ware, the team’s first-round draft pick in 2013, was traded to the Oakland Raiders in March for a fourth-round pick.
On Tuesday, he was in San Diego to meet with the Chargers for a visit.
He is now set to join the Cowboys on a four-year deal that could pay him as much as $40 million annually.
Bryant, who turns 26 next month, had been expected to make the team as a rookie, but that was never confirmed.
Ware’s presence with the Cowboys could be the difference between Ware signing with another team and staying in Dallas.
He could play a significant role in a team that needs to develop a defense that is ranked No. 2 in the NFL in yards allowed per game and No. 4 in scoring defense.
The Cowboys are not expected to move Ware, but if they do, Bryant would be a significant addition to the defense.
Bryant had 14 catches for 211 yards and a touchdown in his first season in Dallas, which was a breakout year for him in which he was one of the league’s most efficient receivers.
His numbers dropped off as the season went on, but he has become a more polished receiver in his second season.
The former Texas A&M star has started 10 of his past 11 games.
Bryant was named to the Pro Bowl last season after finishing second in the league with 11 catches for 126 yards and two touchdowns.
He also had five catches for 68 yards and one touchdown.
The defensive tackle was one for six for five yards.
He has started all 16 games in his career and was an All-Pro last season.