WR Antonio Bryant is a Cowboy
WR Antonio Bryant
WR Antonio Bryant

Posted Apr 20, 2002


The Cowboys finally picked up a wide receiver towards the bottom of the 2nd round, and if you know you anything about college football, you have to be pretty excited. Antonio Bryant has as all the physical tools in place to become one of the top wide receivers in the National Football League. The Cowboys drafted Byrant after a trade with the Chicago Bears.

The Cowboys upgraded their talent at wide receiver in a serious way Saturday evening. Antonio Bryant, regarded as one of the top athletes available in the draft, dropped all the way to the bottom half of the second round due in-part to his off the field problems.

Evidently, Jerry Jones is willing to look past that, just like the Cowboys' organization did with a similar player more than ten years ago. You might remember his name- Michael Irvin. Irvin also had off-the-field issues while at the University of Miami (as well as in Dallas), but the Cowboys took a chance and boy did it ever pay off.

Bryant brings a lot of similar qualities to table, including outstanding speed, great hands, and a certain kind of toughness across the middle of the field. He likely is the third player taken on Saturday that will start next season for the Cowboys.

STATS & BIO: First team All-Conference performer the past two seasons and winner of the Biletinkoff Award, as the nation's top receiver as a sophomore. Led the team in receiving as a junior when his numbers were 42/659/15.7/9 also averaging 28/7.4/0 returning punts. Suffered a high ankle sprain early in the year, an injury that plagued him throughout the entire season. Turned in an outstanding performance during his sophomore campaign with numbers of 68/1,302/19.1/11, leading the nation in receiving yards per game and having eight receptions of longer than 50 yards. Also averaged 16/11.3/0 that same year returning punts. Impacted as a true freshman when his receiving totals were 51/844/16.5/6. Has had several off the field incidents in the past which have resulted in suspension from the team on more than one occasion.

THE GOOD: Game impacting receiver and a major offensive threat when focused. Strong at the point of attack, gets off jams at the line of scrimmage and finds the open spot on the field, making himself an available target. Reads the defense, gets lost in the coverage and though double-teamed, sneaks it downfield on occasion. Fluid, agile and displays terrific adjustment to the throw. Extends his hands, looks the pass in and catches the ball away from his body, displaying strong hands and plucking the ball out of the air. Makes the difficult catch in a crowd or when defenders are draped all over him. Adequate route runner that comes back to the ball out of his breaks and works to pick up yardage running after the catch. Times and anticipates his receptions and displays almost a sixth sense as to where the ball is in the air and where it will be when he catches it.

THE BAD: Seemingly gives half hearted effort at times; lazily releases off the snap of the ball, does not always work to make the reception if the pass is not in his immediate area nor is he always willing to fight for the difficult catch. Loses focus, concentration and drops the easy throw just as quickly as he makes the one handed acrobatic reception. Not fast, lacks the top end speed and not big for a possession receiver. Must also improve his ball security. Confident in himself to the point where he'd be classified as arrogant.

THE SKINNY: Has the abilities to be a force at the next level if he's willing to commit himself on and off the football field and get his priorities in order. Combine workouts, which were less than desirable, pushed him out of the first frame.

Read More on Bryant at TFY Draft Preview.
Read More of Bryant from CowboyUpdate.


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