Brent to sit with victim’s mother at service

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Updated: December 11, 2012

Cowboys Tragedy

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IRVING, Texas — The Dallas Cowboys invited nose tackle Josh Brent to Tuesday’s private memorial service for outside linebacker Jerry Brown.

It was Brent’s car that crashed early Saturday morning resulting in Brown being killed. The two were roommates at the University of Illinois and were very close friends on the Cowboys. Brent is out on $500,000 bail after being charged with intoxication manslaughter.

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“We want to embrace Josh and let him know that this is a good place for him,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said. “Being around Valley Ranch, being around his teammates (and) coaches is a good thing for him. We certainly anticipate him being there tomorrow. I haven’t spoken to him specifically about that, but we anticipate it and he’s certainly welcome to be there.”

Brown’s mother, Stacey Jackson, asked for Brent to meet her at the airport and sit with the Brown family during the memorial service, Cowboys owner Jerry Jones said Tuesday morning on his weekly radio show on KRLD-FM.

On Monday, Brent visited the Valley Ranch complex and met with team doctors and Garrett.

“We’re going to support Josh 100 percent in every way that we can,” said Garrett, who had a one-on-one meeting with Brent and described him as distraught. “The players will do that, the coaches will do that and everyone in our organization will do that. … We all love him and we’re going to be there for him.”

Brent’s jersey was hung in the visitor’s locker room at Paul Brown Stadium on Sunday when the Cowboys played the Cincinnati Bengals. The Cowboys’ players were given the day off on Monday so reporters had no access to the locker room area to see if Brent’s locker remained fully stocked at Valley Ranch.

The Cowboys have been in communication with the league office to determine Brent’s roster status, sources told ESPN. The Cowboys apparently want to retain the NFL rights to Brent even though sources say he does not seem prepared to rejoin the team in a regular capacity any time soon as he is distraught over his role in the death of his friend and teammate.

He also confronts serious legal issues and the possibility of eventual penalties from NFL commissioner Roger Goodell.

Garrett said he didn’t want to comment on Brent’s status with the league or what the team would do from a disciplinary standpoint.

Garrett also wouldn’t get into too many specifics of his conversation with Brent, other than to say the team wants to help him heal from an emotional standpoint.

“This thing only happened a couple of days ago, so I’m sure you guys understand the situation he’s in and how he feels about the situation, and again, we’re trying to help him get through today,” Garrett said. “It’s a very, very difficult and challenging situation for him.”

Cowboys Corner

Coach Jason Garrett talks about the Cowboys’ emotional win over the Bengals and loss of Jerry Brown.

Garrett later added he told Brent, “just that we all love him and we’re going to be here for him.”

The Cowboys have a close-knit defensive line and those players embraced Brown too because of his relationship with Brent.

“We were trying to go out and honor them as much as you could,” defensive end Marcus Spears said after Sunday’s victory in regards to Brent and Brown. “I think emotionally it was more of what you’re used to, just trying to overcome emotions, overcome thoughts thinking about those guys. It was probably the lead up was probably the toughest part.”

Brent has two years remaining on his contract and is getting paid a base salary of $540,000 this season.

What led to the events early Saturday morning is still unclear and Garrett said the organization isn’t ready to begin investigating.

“Yeah, we’re not into that process right now,” he said. “We’re a couple of days away from that. I think we’re all kind of trying to get our arms around what happened. We’re all trying to be very respectful to Jerry’s family and certainly to Josh’s situation and really just trying to get through today. That’s where we are.”

ESPNDallas.com’s Tim MacMahon and ESPN’s Ed Werder contributed to this report.


Calvin Watkins

ESPNDallas.com

Article source: http://espn.go.com/dallas/nfl/story/_/id/8733734/dallas-cowboys-invite-josh-brent-private-memorial-service-jerry-brown