'Red Flags' Still Loom After Dez Bryant's Pro Day
In fact, Bryant's pro-day workout at Oklahoma State may have added to the question marks swirling around the star wide receiver. Bryant posted a pair of 4.52 times in the 40-yard dash, sandwiched around a wind-hampered 4.68, all numbers that were slower than he hoped. He also checked in with a 38-inch vertical and an impressive 11-foot-1 broad jump, but failed to finish both a short-shuttle and three-cone drill, according to NFL.com.
The performance left NFL Network draft guru Mike Mayock "disappointed."
"I'm kind of conflicted," Mayock said. "I come into this workout, I've got him as my No. 3 best football player in the country, not No. 3 wide receiver ...
"I like the guy but I can't put him in Larry Fitzgerald's class ... Very similar numbers, but he was completely clean off the field. This kid didn't finish his short shuttle, didn't finish his three-cone. There are some red flags there."
Keep in mind that nobody's seen Bryant do anything of substance since a Sept. 19, 2009 game against Rice. Bryant grabbed nine catches for 162 yards and two TDs in that 41-24 Oklahoma State win, but shortly thereafter was suspended by the NCAA for the rest of his junior season for lying about a meeting he had with Deion Sanders.
Bryant also skipped workouts at February's combine because of a hamstring injury.
So everyone was eager to see what he'd do Tuesday. The mixed results -- especially the apparent lack of breakaway speed -- could keep Bryant as a mid- to low-first round prospect.
Take, for example, NFL Draft Scout's breakdown of Bryant's intangibles: No major character concerns, but questions abound about his consistency, maturity and work ethic. Suspension for lying to NCAA should not hurt his stock if he takes responsibility for his actions.
The site then lists Bryant's NFL player comparison as Cowboys wide receiver Roy Williams. That match fits size-wise (Bryant's 6-foot-2, 215 pounds; Williams 6-3, 215) and in their ability to make catches. But NFL teams have to be concerned that the similarities extend beyond that -- Williams continues to struggle with inconsistency and the mental aspects of the game.
Bryant still needs to prove that he's worthy of being a top pick. He didn't exactly do that Tuesday.
"He's got extremely strong hands, he can pluck the football. ... That's where he's most natural," Mayock said. "But there's a lot of questions. I've got to go back to the drawing board and put the tape back on."