It seems odd to be announcing a draft pick in late August, but with the CBA lockout, plus the supplemental draft being pushed back, here we are. With former Ohio State quarterback Terrelle Pryor as the only play in the draft, all eyes were on him. For the Raiders, all eyes were on the stop watch. They liked what they saw enough to snag Pryor with a third round pick.
After Pryor was declared eligible, he held his Pro Day for NFL scouts. At that Pro Day were representatives from 16 different NFL teams. Pryor went through throwing drills and the like, but the one drill most talked about was his 40 yard dash time. He was clocked at an impressive 4.38 and 4.41 in the 40 yard dash. Among quarterbacks, that puts him behind only Michael Vick for fastest in the NFL.
The problem with that is, many don't see him as an NFL quarterback. He is seen by most as a player who will transition to receiver. At his Pro Day he said he would be willing to play any position asked of him, but he didn't run a single route in practice or take any catches to show if he has any receiving skills.
As a receiver, his 40 time would have placed him third overall in the 2011 scouting combine, just above Julio Jones (4.39). But Jones is a proven game breaking wide receiver. Pryor has only proven he can be elusive when he tucks the ball and runs.
Any team who wanted Pryor would draft him as an athlete based almost solely on his speed. Enter the Raiders, who have been down that road before. Many times in fact.
I initially projected Pryor as a round six pick with an outside chance at round five. But then he ran his way into the heart and mind of Al Davis.
In April's draft, the Raiders took the two fastest players in corner Demarcus Van Dyke (round three) and running back Taiwan Jones (round four). The year before, they drafted the fastest player when they chose wide receiver Jacoby Ford (round four). Two seasons ago the team took speedy, unpolished receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey with the number seven overall pick. He had yet to show good hands and the Raiders took him with their time honored tradition of "you can't teach speed." That is the kind of player the Raiders are getting in Pryor.
Pryor is not an NFL quarterback. He has serious accuracy issues. Quarterbacks cannot simply be taught accuracy once they get to the pros. Either they always have it or they never do. Pryor will be moved to receiver. The Raiders will hope he can turn into a Brad Smith type player.
They certainly expect big things from him because a third round pick in the supplemental draft is a high price tag. This also leaves the Raiders without a round two, three, and four pick in the 2012 draft. They sent the round two pick to New England to move into the third round to get Joseph Barksdale, and they sent their 2012 round four pick to Washington long ago when acquiring Jason Campbell.
The Raiders will no doubt mortgage future drafts to move back into these rounds. They will have a compensatory third round pick or two for the losses of Nnamdi Asomugha and Robert Gallery as free agents. Zach Miller could bring a round four compensatory pick. All of these picks depend on how many incoming free agents the Raiders signed.
The NFL postponed the supplemental draft because they had yet to make a decision on whether Pryor was eligible or not. When it was announced that he was going to be eligible, it came with some penalties. Pryor was to be suspended the first five games of next season at Ohio State for violating NCAA rules about accepting improper benefits. The NFL imposed the same suspension on him for this season, which means he won't even be able to suit up until week six. He can, however, practice with his teammates and play the remainder of training camp and preseason.
So now we will see if Pryor can even catch a ball or run a route -- never mind the character concerns with his suspension and subsequent unwillingness to serve it at the college level. Quite a player to spend a third round pick on, but there you go. This is quite a gamble.
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Great point by Jerry McDonald...
"The suspension is actually a good thing for the Raiders, and not just because they save $100,000 in salary.
It means Oakland doesn’t have to decide which player to cut for five weeks, since Pryor doesn’t count against the 53-man roster. By the time the sixth game rolls around, attrition will probably take care of any dilemmas."
He's going to need extensive work anyway. Let me practice... maybe even get his feet wet in a couple of pre-season games.... and six weeks into the season, in stall a limited package of plays for him.
That's ideal, any way you slice it.
Also, you need to take into account that Oakland are probably going to get at least two 3rd round picks as compensatory selections. They may end up with two 3s and a 4.
So they'll probably go into 2012 with at least a 1st, two 3rds, a 5th, a 6th and a 7th.
They can either move the two 3s into a 2nd. Or move one of them back into an extra 4th and 5th.
They have a lot of options basically. I wouldn't be worried about picks. They made this deal knowing they have lots of mid round picks coming their way.
I wouldn't be surprised if they either packaged their compensatory picks into a 2nd and a 4th for example.
Or went the other way, and ended up with a 3rd, 4th, and two 5ths.
I only think we'll miss out on one round. Probably the 2nd
By the way, I don't buy into all this "mechanics" stuff.
Mike Vick, Phil Rivers and guys like that were all panned for their mechanics, and there were claims they could bust.
Truth is, if you have talent, you have talent.
I've watched a lot of Pryor in college. The guy has a huge arm, and great deep ball accuracy. He needs to work on his fundamentals, but doesn't every rookie?
I personally love the pick.
Let's get one thing straight - nearly all 3rd round picks are risky. And the majority of them turn out to be busts.
You've got to think an athlete like Pryor is worth the risk there. He may well bust. However, he could also end up being something special - at multiple positions.
He has a chance (even if it's small) of being an NFl Quarterback, wide receiver, tight end, or general impact player (like Brad Smith).
That reduces your risk. Chances probably are, he will end up a starter in one of those positions
he has 2 things going in his favor here, 1. he is fast, and 2. say what you want but he throws a better deep ball than campbell cause he actually leads receivers so they can run after the catch! depending on how things go, i would not be surprised we see him alot in the backfield, maybe not by him earning it, but by he might be the last qb standing
i like the kid. he's being screwed by the money grubbers in the ncaa, so he had to go pro. with our line, a scrambling qb will be what we need. campbell will be gone by halftime of the jets game, edwards might finish, and boller can make it till pryor is on the field. seriously though, run some wildcat, split him out wide, a little option here or there. maybe he can help this pathetic offense get going. if we (campbell) gets of to a good start, broncos and bills, then the pressure will be off of him. but if campbell is shaky, and you all heer know it, coach davis will be counting down the days till his suspension is over! and for those who think pryor is getting his "just due" by his suspension, what about guys like, oh say, Pete Carroll who got the heck out of dodge in the whole usc ordeal!
Risky move by Al Davis, but I think it is worth taking. Giving up a 3rd round pick for a gifted athlete like Pyor is much better than selecting a guy like DHB with the 7th overall pick. Pryor could be a special player, and wide receiver is always a position the Raiders need to improve on. Losing a 3rd round pick will not break the bank for the Raiders, and I view Pryor as just as valuable a player as DVD...
Nice post as usual Levi. A couple of thoughts.
Of course its a gamble... mostly because taking any player in any draft is a gamble. The guy is exceptionally talented, and by every account is a very hard worker (this is THE only character concern that should matter). Whether or not he violated any NCAA "rules" by refusing to get f****d without even a kiss by the scumbags that run "amateur" football is completely and totally beside the point.
Levi, I realize your not the only one to do it, but it just strikes me as lazy analysis to reflexively brand someone a "character concern" without giving any thought to the nature of the particular circumstance.
I'm excited about this risk. He's motivated, experienced on the big stage and (handled properly) can develop into a multifaceted threat for the Raiders that will give teams pause when game-planning against us. In particular, I like the idea of developing him as a QB as he takes snaps as a WR. Maybe he'll never develop as a franchise QB, but I'm psyched to see the Raiders try to make it happen.
And best of all, following the Raiders is exciting again. That should count for something, both in the Al Davis' pocketbook (which always empties out in an effort to improve the team) and the in the hearts and minds of long, long suffering Raider fans.
3.38 & 3.41... why is he not running in next years 2012 Olympics in London :-) Surely you have gone fishing and put a type over in on purpose put in for some nerd like me to take a bite. Which I duly have ..Yum Yum!
Anyway back to the article.. I am initially not to happy with this pick. Quite honestly I think there are better QB's avail next year and by the looks of our preseason form we will be in the mix for most of them!
His stats are very good, but, i Just look at tape and think he never throws a clean ball, it never seems to spiral quite right (Maybe thats me being picky) but it concerns me a little.
I know we were seriously interested in kaepernick in this years draft and to me Pryor is probably a better version of him and if Al wants to go that direction with a QB getting him in the 3rd round on that basis could a bargain. I just seriously hope he doesnt have the attitude of VY... if this whole episode over the summer has humbled him then maybe he won't but if anything it has aided him and his punishment has been to be drafted into the NFL a year early.. which could actually add to any personal issues he may have..
This is a big gamble!
@ChristopherMooney You can not trade compensatory picks
There is ZERO chance that he gets under center this year (assuming that we don't start getting our offensive plays called from a bed & breakfast in Idaho).
@Spartacus I don't understand this idea about changing his position to WR?
From what I know he has never really been thrown a ball, we have no idea what he catches like... Ok, people, including myself have questions over his accuracy but one thing is very clear is that is is a Quarterback, nothing else. In college he threw for a lot of TD's and run for a lot of TDs as well. A true Duel-threat QB!
Why waste time coaching him into something he has never been when we can spend less time and money enhancing his throwing abilities?? For me this is something you can try and do with a UDFA or 6/7th round pick not a 3rd.
@JeriousNorwood If everything works out.. and he is a success, TJ is blinding and we still have DMac he hasn't done a runner to someone.
The Thought of Pryor, with TJ and Dmac lined up in the backfield at the same time! What a nightmare for Defensive Cood.. you have to pick up the run and one of Ford or D Moore is going to find themselves wide open! TD Raiders!!!! anyways.. This is obviously more fantasy at the moment but it sounds good :-)
@ukraider78 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0KI8sfIvfmY ... i see a lot of pin point accuracy here. especially on 5:30 ... yes, they're only highlights, but they do show that he's already capable of being accurate on a 40+ yard bomb ... Hue Jackson has developed such talent before... RIGHT? Al Saunders also has, as he is basically our QBs coach... or did you forget that? LOW RISK HIGH REWARD FACTOR FOR PRYOR.
not really much of a gamble. i very much disagree. especially if Al Davis gets his 3rd rounder back, which like what was explained in the article, seems like it's going that way. Al essentially moved up in the first round of the 2012 draft for 1 of 2 3rd round picks to grab Pryor. Pryor would have gone in the first round. many experts had him doing so, even though it's possible he wouldn't. who would have thought Tebow would have went that high? having said that, you know Al would have piled together draft picks and/or players to move up into the first round regardless, or simply just used his first round pick on him. so look at that as a worst case scenario! he didn't have to spend hardly anything grabbing Pryor! be thankful nothing else he did set back this franchise!
I don't see how hardly any of you see the upside in this? it's not really a HIGH RISK HIGH REWARD thing. he gets to sit behind veterans for a couple of years... practicing his throw. he's no slouch in the willingness to get better category... he's a very hard worker ... okay, put it this way. if DHB's hands can get better like we've seen them, along with his route running, Terrell Pryor has a good fighting chance in making it within 3 years in the NFL.
This completes the TRACK TEAM on offense. when Pryor steps onto the field, it's conceivable to think that Al has put together the fastest team in NFL history. i'm sure i'm wrong, but there can't be too teams historically that were faster than this. it may serve Al Davis well in the upcoming years. SPEED truly does kill, if Pryor can hit some long bombs down field, his speed and elusiveness in the pocket can possibly mimic that of Michael "i murder dogs" Vick.
"I don't understand this idea about changing his position to WR?"You've got to remember that he's only a few years out of high school, and dominant athletes like that tend to play multiple positions, and multiple sports there.
You know, I suspect not only was he a great multi position player in high school, but he was probably also a star track and field athlete, as well as probably a top basketball prospect.
Guys this freaky can do a lot of things. He could probably make the NBA if he wanted to. Let alone switch to receiver................
@ukraider78 Sounds nice. But just to be clear, I don't think he's immediately going to turn into a world-beater. Like any other QB or WR prospect, you have to give him 3 years (assuming he's not lazy puke... e.g., JRuss) before you know what you've got. But considering that we will be looking at compensatory picks to help defray the cost in terms of draft picks... Why not? Plus, his contract is totally manageable.
I expect this to work. Maybe not now, and I'm not saying he's the second coming of (post dogfighting) Michael Vick, but I think he'll be someone we're glad is in a Raider uniform.
@ukraider78 is is a coincidence that he wears #2 ? haha! if he turns out, then he'll be the made up pick. a 1st overall vs a supplemental draft pick. that would be a quite a story...
It's what's known as a calculated gamble.
Oakland will be thinking, bare minimum, he can contribute as an impact player. Like say Brad Smith. Playing occasional downs in wild cat, and the slot.
However, they're hoping he can develop into either a good receiver, tight end or quarterback. Which will be a bonus.
I'd say, for a 3rd rounder, it's a decent risk to take. Chances are he will contribute somewhere
I agree with you. They should work with him as a QB, and see what happens.
It's a nice insurance policy though. As in, if he's terrible at QB, at an NFL level, he could easily make a transition to other positions.
All I meant, on my earlier point is, that in America, a dominant athlete is just a dominant athlete.
As High School sports is such a high level over there, get coached at a very high level in multiple sports, and as such, it's not that huge a step up for them to make the switch as you'd think.
Lebron James was dominant in High School, but he wasn't that much more dominant in the NBA in his debut season.
He was more dominant in high school, as you'd expect, but the difference wasn't as much as you'd think moving to the pros - as in his stats.
What I'm saying is, guys like Pryor have probably spent the last 15 years, dominating at multiple sports, in multiple positions, and being coached to very high standards in High School.
So making a switch won't be that big a deal I suspect.
A lot of NFL players, for example, played mutiple positions in college, and multiple sports. And were drafted in multiple sports as well.
I think both John Elway and Troy Aikman were also drafted in Baseball as well as Football. Elway went in the first round, to the Yankees I believe.
In fact, I think Troy Aikman went to college on a Baseball scholarship, and only switched to college football once he'd got there.
I'm pretty sure Terrell Owens, Antonio Gates, Tony Gonzalez, Julius Peppers would all have been drafted into the NBA, if they'd made themselves available.
In fact, I don't think Gates, Gonzalez, or Peppers played that much football at all in college. Basketball was their first sport.
As I said - in America, if you're an athlete, you're an athlete. They get elite coaching, in most sports, from a very young age
"I understand it has happened before but in my opinion.. no clever retorts please. I do not personally get why we would switch a QB with an truly outstanding college career to play in a position"
Problem is, there are lots of truly outstanding college Quarterbacks. And hardly any of them make NFL rosters, let alone start for teams.
Chase Daniel and Troy Smith are probably two of the greatest College QBs of all time. Daniel was a two time Heisman runner up. Smith won the Heisman.
I'm pretty sure Daniel didn't even get drafted. And Smith went in the 7th round. Both are now 3rd stringers, with little chance of ever starting for a team.
Being dominant in college isn't enough for a Quarterback. As it's a very open form of the game. Very easy to make big plays (compared to the nfl). They play in very simple offenses, against very simple defenses.
Saying that, what Pryor does has going for him is prototypical size, and arm strength. So he has a better chance than most.
As in, guys like Troy Smith, Tebow, Daniel - 50% of their problem was actually their size (all around 6'1) and weak arms.
Pryor can make all the throws. He just has a slow release, and poor accuracy
@ChristopherMooney@tucsonmike@Spartacus I know what you mean Christopher and I know it happens in America that athletes do switch sports but as Darkkush has pointed out we have Al Saunders as our QB coach. Who is one of the best QB coaches in recent times. Lets us use his ability and teach Pryor the fundamentals of being an NFL QB .
We don't need to rush him in. We can spend a year developing his game..maybe more... depending on how Campbell plays this year and if he is given a long term deal...
We were all crying out for a developmental QB in the draft and we've now got him! Lets see what happens.. The more i think about it the more i think this can turn out to be a great pick!
@ChristopherMooney@tucsonmike@Spartacus Thank you for pointing out the game is called 'American Football'... You can say the same about Bruce Campbell playing football all his life. We going to convert him to fullback..... Please don't give me a sarcastic reply..
I understand it has happened before but in my opinion.. no clever retorts please. I do not personally get why we would switch a QB with an truly outstanding college career to play in a position where he hasn't played since before high school he was the ... waste of time and money..
That's what I mean. It's hard to comprehend, here in the UK, as people tend to just focus on one sport, and one position here.
It's unthinkable, as an example, that Wayne Rooney for Manchester United, could play say Rugby..................!
You're right though. I imagine a guy like Pryor has been dominant in multi positions, and multi sports, for most of his life.
Julian Endleman, Hines Ward, Matt Jones, were all college quarterbacks, drafted pretty highly for their receiver potential
Matt Jones was drafted 21st overall, purely because he was 6'5, and very fast. He played Quarterback his entire college career
@JeriousNorwood This was meant for future seasons, 2/3 years is what i was giving it... 'I did write, as long as we still have Dmac and he hasn't done a runner anywhere' :-) As far as I was aware he still has 2/3 years on his contract.
@ukraider78 he will be a QB
@DARKKUSH Points all taken . As we have drafted him it is now to late to pick holes in what is wrong with it and try and look at the positives.
I have seen all the youtube videos and in highlights he is a very impressive QB.
I still don't see the point in turning him into a WR which a lot of people seem to be touting as an idea. I am very aware we have two amazing QB coaches and we are in a great position to develop him as a player. I am suspecting that Pryor will be a HIGH REWARD player.