Oklahoma State wide out Dez Bryant finally worked out for scouts today. After missing most of the 2009 season through suspension and then failing to work out at the combine - many teams were interested to see how Bryant performed. Amongst the observers - Pete Carroll and John Schneider. Carroll admitted via twitter he's in the midst of a 'road trip' - including watching Bryant today, Sam Bradford yesterday and even managing to squeeze in a game of bowling with Russell Okung. But how did Bryant perform?
It's being reported in some places that he forgot his cleats for the work out. I'm not going to over react to that because even on the most important day of your life - we're all liable to leave something at home or make a basic error. However, teams who were already suspicious about Bryant's organisation and punctuation might see this is as just another thing to roll their eyes at.
He ran three forty yard dashes with an average of 4.55 seconds. It's not a great time, but it's not a disaster. I never expected to see Bryant blow anyone away with his forty run. Neither Bryant nor Michael Crabtree for me were relying on a forty time to boost their stock. Anything faster would've been a pleasant surprise. What it doesn't do is immediately push Bryant back into legitimate top ten consideration. It doesn't drop him much either.
He performed shirtless, perhaps to show that he hasn't spent his time off on the couch. Bryant weighed in at 224lbs which is about 12lbs more than his normal playing weight - but he's added bulk not flab or bad weight.
In my latest mock draft, I had Bryant going #19 to the Atlanta Falcons. In all honesty, it wouldn't surprise me if he went much earlier. The talent is there. I much prefer Crabtree last year, but a lot of people prefer Bryant. It's not so much that Bryant is a 'diva' or comes with any lingering baggage - I just think he's a little immature and needs a strong role model amongst his coaches and teammates. He'll need to show he's willing to put the work in to match the pay packet. Some teams will be put off, but there will come a point when a franchise sees Bryant is still on the board and feels they have to roll the dice.
Atlanta would be a good choice in that they have a very good coaching staff and a particularly mature, level headed franchise quarterback. They have a very good mentor on the roster in Tony Gonzalez. They are a team that aren't too far away from being successful. That is why I think they might be an appealing match. However, these teams aren't obliged to feel that highly about Bryant - which is why he could fall a lot further than #19. His stock right now is amongst the most difficult to judge.
Mike Mayock from the NFL Network discusses Bryant's pro-day and admits he'll have to go back and watch extra tape to get a feel for his stock.
Mayock also speaks to Bryant after the work out. The OSU wide out was pleased with his vertical jump, but feels he can run a lot faster than his forty suggests.