Dez Bryant returns home to Lufkin for NFL Pro Day workout
LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) – Performing for a media heavy audience, spectators looking on from outside of the fence at Abe Martin Stadium and NLF scouts for teams like the Seattle Seahawks and Greenbay Packers, draft prospect Dez Bryant showed off his football talents.
There were a lot of questions heading into Tuesday's "private" Pro Day for the Lufkin High School and Oklahoma State University football standout. Scouts wondered if the high profile wide receiver still had hamstring problems, can he last a 16-game season in the NFL, how fast is he in the 40, among others.
Observers we spoke with said many of those questions should have been answered. The wide receiver showed up in apparently good shape, ran a consistent 4.5/40 and caught the ball well. Bryant said he felt good about the workout. He said in the beginning he was a little nervous, but once he started running routs, "Everything fell back into place and felt natural. I'm really glad to be home." The NFL scouts there declined to make any comments or do any interviews.
"Dez looked explosive," said KTRE Sports Director Nick James. "He ran well, he caught the ball well and he looked like he was in shape."
OSU quarterback Bobby Reid threw passes for Bryant. Reid, who declared for the 2010 NFL Draft instead of using his final year of eligibility, said Bryant was on mark overall. He noted Bryant did have a little trouble on change of direction. That was an observation also made by former Lufkin Panther and Texas A and M star Reggie McNeal. McNeal added, "Overall, Dez is a great player and is really good at what he does.
McNeal lives in Houston when he's not playing quarterback and wide receiver for the Canadian Football League. He said he knew this workout would be big and he wanted to participate to "Show them I can play and run routs like the best of them." McNeal said the thought he did pretty good, "My routs were crisp. I'm just hoping to open some eyes and that somebody will give me a call. Just a chance to get in the door and once I get in the door, I promise they won't be disappointed."
As for Bryant, he said he's headed to Dallas for a meeting with the Cowboys tomorrow and a scheduled workout later this week. On draft day, Bryant said he plans to be in New York. "They invited me to attend. I think it's a great honor and plan to be there."
The Lufkin High School graduate and Oklahoma State University standout is projected as a first found NFL draft pick. He is believed to be one of the best wide receivers available in the draft.
NOTE: Bryant finished his 2008 college season for OSU with 87 receptions for 1,480 and 19 touchdowns. He was ruled ineligible for the rest of the 2009 season on October 7 for violation of an NCAA bylaw when he failed to fully disclose to the NCAA his interaction with former NFL player Deion Sanders. He was considered the best receiver in 2009 and had received some Heisman trophy consideration before his suspension.
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