It seems every other draft NFL Draft or so, we get a “million dollar arm, ten cent head” prospect. (If I may borrow the line from “Bull Durham.”)
This year, it’s Arkansas and former Michigan Wolverines quarterback Ryan Mallett. Remember the character concerns about Jimmy Clausen last year? Take that amount and square it, no cube it, and the equation equals Mallett’s reputation and draft stock. His coarse, somewhat hostile interaction with the media at the combine drew comparisons to Ryan Leaf, (For more on how he ended up go here) who earned the nickname “baby boy” for his insanely immature public blow-ups.
Mallett has never tested positive on a drug test, but he’s supposedly the first QB ever to admit to using them in an interview with a NFL GM.
According to Larry Brown Sports:
there have been widespread rumors about Mallett’s drug use throughout college and an analyst saying Mallett is a “Caucasian street guy” like Eminem or Vanilla Ice. Even Mallett’s coach at Arkansas, Bobby Petrino, tried to improve Mallett’s slang because of concerns over image and appearance.
By Paul M. Banks
Now there’s another camp that believes Mallett’s issues could have just stemmed from simple mis-communication, and that perhaps he’s just not the best with texting and the latest in communication media. (Sounds like a lovely camp, I hope it has arts & crafts, and counselors who are friendly)
But Mallet does have a DUI on his record from ’09, and his background raised some red flags when he missed a meeting with the Carolina Panthers. He was rumored to have been out all night, and that was the “supposed” reason for his absence. His agent said Mallett was just sick.
The trials and tribulations of the tall, strong-armed signal caller inspired another jock with a history of alcohol infractions, Golfer John Daly, to give him some advice.
“I think the most important thing for Ryan is how he handles himself. Whether it’s an interview or whatever, listen to the question before you answer it. Some of the things you are going to do off the field, think about the responsibilities. Because I’ve learned the hard way.”
“It’s not about your talent anymore,” Daly said. “It’s about what you do with it.”
So where does he end up? Where do all trouble children and NFL malcontents go? The Oakland Raiders.
According to Raiders Post
As the draft is just four days away, Mallett’s stock seems to be where it was at a couple of weeks ago: first round talent who could fall to the beginning of round three.
Back in Oakland, the Raiders currently have two quarterbacks on the roster: Jason Campbell and Kyle Boller, both former first round picks. Both are entering contract years.
Now we’re hearing a lot of talk about Mallett going somewhere in the first round, in the 20s. In one of the most unpredictable drafts in recent memory, he’s the prospect that should be the wildest card of all.