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Mayock: JaMarcus Russell's Pro Day a cautionary tale

The consensus around the NFL is that Oklahoma quarterback Sam Bradford had an impressive Pro Day on Monday. But even as he agrees with that assessment, NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock is offering up a cautionary tale of why coaches and general managers shouldn’t fall in love with a player based on what he does in shorts and a T-shirt.

“Let me give you an example of the other side of it,” Mayock said this morning on The Dan Patrick Show. “The best Pro Day I ever saw as a quarterback was JaMarcus Russell. . . . I’ve never seen a quarterback throw the football like that in my life, but I still couldn’t take him in the first round — the guy doesn’t care about football. He doesn’t have the passion for the game, doesn’t have the work ethic, I don’t want him. But by the way, it was a pretty impressive Pro Day.”

Ultimately, Mayock said, teams can’t allow what they see in a workout to supercede what they see in game action.

“The tape work and the body of work in college has to take precedence,” Mayock said.

Fortunately for Bradford, Mayock says, his great Pro Day was only reinforcing his great play on the field at Oklahoma. And Mayock says that unless there’s a medical concern, there’s no reason Bradford won’t be the first overall pick in the draft.

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57 Responses to “Mayock: JaMarcus Russell's Pro Day a cautionary tale”
  1. GoBrowns19 says: Mar 30, 2010 11:29 AM

    Phil Savage fell in love with Russell’s pro day to a point where he was willing to pull a Ditka type trade to move up and get him. He wanted to ruin two drafts (instead of only the one draft he ruined to get Quinn).

  2. CdnMike says: Mar 30, 2010 11:35 AM

    You’re talking about Jamarcus Russell like he is a bust. Isn’t he one of the top QBs in the league? Al Davis told me that he is one of the best.

  3. anjelmanning says: Mar 30, 2010 11:36 AM

    BEEFCAKE!

  4. raybin says: Mar 30, 2010 11:36 AM

    Mayock’s on point with this one. But it’s not like Russell was a slouch at LSU. He had some nice game film to go with the jaw dropping pro day.
    His problems all go back to his lack of motivation and passion for the game. That’s why he balloons in weight and doesn’t study film.

  5. dogma1 says: Mar 30, 2010 11:37 AM

    JaMarcus Russell has all the talent in the world he could have easily been a top 10 QB but he simply doesn’t care. The moment he got paid he retired.
    Tom Cable gave Russell a DVD, it was the game plan on how to attack the Chiefs, Cable told Russell to watch it…. The next day Cable asked Russell what he thought about the game plan and Russell told him it was great and he was on board… The DVD was blank… Tom Cable gave Russell a blank DVD to see if Russell was even doing his homework.
    The next week Russell was benched.

  6. Raider3:16 says: Mar 30, 2010 11:38 AM

    I don’t remember anyone voicing those concerns about Russell when he was drafted.
    The only thing I remember was questions about his experience.
    Of course, NOW all the naysayers are coming out with the “I told you so’s”.

  7. r8rsfan says: Mar 30, 2010 11:38 AM

    Mike Mayock is far more credible than McShay or Kiper IMO. His analysis of Russell is spot-on. JaMarcus is sinking the Raiders further and further into the abyss and has the franchise paralyzed. Darius Heyward-Bey is another nail in the coffin. Al drafted a pitcher, not a football player in JR.

  8. tescu says: Mar 30, 2010 11:39 AM

    that is why im a big fan of mayock, he is great at finding talent

  9. The Real Shuxion says: Mar 30, 2010 11:41 AM

    but I still couldn’t take him in the first round — the guy doesn’t care about football
    ————————————————-
    Oakland could.
    Commitment to excellence!!!

  10. Citizen Strange says: Mar 30, 2010 11:41 AM

    I would seriously like to see what Whiz could do with Russell in Arizona.
    I expect big things from Derek Anderson. Unfortunately for Leinart you can’t coach arm strength.

  11. AllThat says: Mar 30, 2010 11:43 AM

    And Mayock says that unless there’s a medical concern, there’s no reason Bradford won’t be the first overall pick in the draft.
    Not happening…….
    Is Mayock sleeping with Kiper & McShay?

  12. TylerDurden says: Mar 30, 2010 11:43 AM

    ProFootball Talk’s exhuberence for bashing all things JaMarcus Russell is beginning to become an unhealthy obsession. Next we will see a “JR’s weight” counter in the right column below the “Days without an arrest” counter.

  13. Big Stretch says: Mar 30, 2010 11:44 AM

    Yeah I remember when the experts got all hot and bothered because JaMarcus could throw the ball 70 yards from his knees. What a joke. I’m pretty sure Ryan Leaf had a good pro day too.

  14. pkrjones says: Mar 30, 2010 11:45 AM

    There IS a reason why he won’t be the 1st overall pick if your report from last night is correct… he needs to sign a contract BEFORE the draft or the Rams should move on.
    Sucking AND be held over a barrel by your #1 draftee and QB of the future is a really bad position to be in.

  15. jb10 says: Mar 30, 2010 11:45 AM

    maybe it was the dumb look on russell’s face that gave it away

  16. anjelmanning says: Mar 30, 2010 11:48 AM

    Kiper and McShit I’m retarded – Are two of the biggest tools ever. Mayock owns….

  17. dabarber says: Mar 30, 2010 11:51 AM

    Yeah, he says that now. He didn’t know he’d be a lazy dud back then.
    “The best Pro Day I ever saw as a quarterback was JaMarcus Russell. . . . I’ve never seen a quarterback throw the football like that in my life, but I still couldn’t take him in the first round — the guy doesn’t care about football. He doesn’t have the passion for the game, doesn’t have the work ethic, I don’t want him. But by the way, it was a pretty impressive Pro Day.”

  18. ClevJimbo says: Mar 30, 2010 11:52 AM

    Too bad this is what Mayock said right before the draft regarding Jamarcus Russell:
    JaMarcus Russell’s ceiling is as high as any quarterback I have seen coming out of college since John Elway.
    –Mike Mayock
    He also had him rated as the #2 prospect coming out that year.
    But now he’s acting like he knew at the time he was going to be a bust.

  19. mburger13 says: Mar 30, 2010 11:58 AM

    nothing like revisionist history!!
    Mayock in 2007 on Jamarcus Russell, who he ranked 2nd on his big board behind only Calvin Johnson:
    “JaMarcus Russell’s ceiling is as high as any quarterback I have seen coming out of college since John Elway.”

  20. Kirmie says: Mar 30, 2010 12:04 PM

    r8rsfan: Jamarcus could never make it as a pitcher. You think he can haul his fat butt all the way to the top of a pitchers mound?

  21. RavenFreek says: Mar 30, 2010 12:04 PM

    J.R. reminds me of Bubba Gump!

  22. thebirdofprey says: Mar 30, 2010 12:04 PM

    Here is something from 2007 to refute Mayock’s comments about not taking Russell in the first round.
    “The Top 5 On His Draftboard
    Kiper: Calvin Johnson, Joe Thomas, Adrian Peterson, JaMarcus Russell, Brady Quinn.
    Mayock: Calvin Johnson, JaMarcus Russell, Adrian Peterson, Joe Thomas, LaRon Landry.”

  23. Jagdbaer says: Mar 30, 2010 12:06 PM

    Sam Bradford’s real pro day was against Florida in 2009. Big 12 defenses don’t compare to the SEC.

  24. Jammal Lord says: Mar 30, 2010 12:07 PM

    “Tom Cable gave Russell a DVD, it was the game plan on how to attack the Chiefs, Cable told Russell to watch it…. The next day Cable asked Russell what he thought about the game plan and Russell told him it was great and he was on board… The DVD was blank… Tom Cable gave Russell a blank DVD to see if Russell was even doing his homework.
    The next week Russell was benched. ”
    Is that really true?

  25. JaMarcus Russell #2 says: Mar 30, 2010 12:16 PM

    Nobody thought he was going to be bad when he was drafted. Oakland needed a QB and he was the best QB available- deal with it.
    Why don’t you rip on some of the other first overall QBs who sucked; Alex Smith, David Carr

  26. blacktoothgrin says: Mar 30, 2010 12:19 PM

    “dogma1 says:
    March 30, 2010 11:37 AM
    Tom Cable gave Russell a DVD, it was the game plan on how to attack the Chiefs, Cable told Russell to watch it…. The next day Cable asked Russell what he thought about the game plan and Russell told him it was great and he was on board… The DVD was blank… Tom Cable gave Russell a blank DVD to see if Russell was even doing his homework. ”
    Where did you hear that? Thats a pretty amazing, but believable story if its true.

  27. Gaiterdan65 says: Mar 30, 2010 12:22 PM

    I hate Mike Mayock. He blows Tim Tebow on a daily basis. He makes crappy projections, his mock drafts are rediculous. He acts like he never makes wrong assessments.
    He’s a closet homo.

  28. WarrenMoonGOAT says: Mar 30, 2010 12:25 PM

    Mayock is a turd
    he absolutely has no idea what he is talking about, dude is not a very good talent evaluator at all
    he would’ve volunteered to watch Russells kids in 2007 now he’s playing the ‘i told u so’ game
    F him

  29. RaiderRedleg says: Mar 30, 2010 12:27 PM

    Mayock said:
    “I’ve never seen a quarterback throw the football like that in my life, but I still couldn’t take him in the first round ”
    ————————————————–
    I’ll agree that Russell has been a bust, but PLEASE…Maycock is lying through his teeth saying, “I couldn’t take him in the first round”.
    NO ONE (Kiper and McShay included) EVER said JaMarcus Russell WAS NOT a top ten pick leading up to the 2007 NFL Draft.

  30. Ron says: Mar 30, 2010 12:30 PM

    Now that JaMarcus Russell is a left tackle it wasn’t as bad a pick if he remained a qb

  31. AZcardsfan009 says: Mar 30, 2010 12:33 PM

    Citizen Strange, Whiz could do NOTHING with Russel because he sucks. Whiz has done NOTHING with Leinart in 3 years either. I am a whiz fan, but this year we will find out how good a coach he is. It is pretty easy to tell Kurt Warner(who made 2 super bowls and won 2 MVP’s before he ever met whiz), to just drop back and throw it 40 times to Fitz and Boldin. Where is the running game him and Grimm where SUPPOSED to bring?

  32. PiKindaGuy says: Mar 30, 2010 12:35 PM

    JaMarcus Russell’s ceiling is as high as any quarterback I have seen coming out of college since John Elway.

    The two are not mutually exclusive. You can have all the talent in the world and the highest ceiling of anyone, but if you don’t apply it you’re worthless.

  33. peteo says: Mar 30, 2010 12:38 PM

    anyone who says they had Russell being a bust before the draft is full of it. everyone on tv and radio had this idiot being the next elway or montana or whoever. all the “experts” do the same things every year; find the positive game film, highlight the combine and go all willy nilly about the pro day workouts. after its all said and done the guy either works out and they pat themselves on the back or the guy is a bust and they all say “see I told ya so”. the only reason they get away with the latter is because no one ever calls them on their bs. the only “expert” I have ever seen say they got it wrong is Merril Hodge. he’ll admit it cuz he is a class act and not afraid to be wrong once in a while. too bad the rest of the media cant do the same.

  34. Meni69 says: Mar 30, 2010 12:38 PM

    Sam vs FL
    26/41 256 yards 2 tds 2 ints
    he was a redshirt sophomore
    i’ll take Sam as the top QB in the draft

  35. Smoke&Mirrors says: Mar 30, 2010 12:44 PM

    Mayock needs to practice more of what he preaches and watch more film. His talent evaluational skills are comical.
    The sad thing is, as much as Mayock loves him some Mayock (for no apparent reason), the guy is probably better at his job than Kiper and McShay.
    But how much does one get for being the smartest kid in the Special Ed classroom?

  36. hotchick says: Mar 30, 2010 12:46 PM

    Why wasn’t this info included in MDS’ post? Wasn’t this the first question each of us readers had after finishing the story?
    ClevJimbo says:
    March 30, 2010 11:52 AM
    Too bad this is what Mayock said right before the draft regarding Jamarcus Russell:
    JaMarcus Russell’s ceiling is as high as any quarterback I have seen coming out of college since John Elway.
    –Mike Mayock
    He also had him rated as the #2 prospect coming out that year.
    But now he’s acting like he knew at the time he was going to be a bust.

  37. raiders177 says: Mar 30, 2010 12:55 PM

    # thebirdofprey says: March 30, 2010 12:04 PM
    Here is something from 2007 to refute Mayock’s comments about not taking Russell in the first round.
    “The Top 5 On His Draftboard
    Kiper: Calvin Johnson, Joe Thomas, Adrian Peterson, JaMarcus Russell, Brady Quinn.
    Mayock: Calvin Johnson, JaMarcus Russell, Adrian Peterson, Joe Thomas, LaRon Landry.”
    ____________________________________
    Owned.

  38. DoomsDayD75 says: Mar 30, 2010 12:55 PM

    I like the “J.R. weight counter” idea TylerDurden.

  39. Junior says: Mar 30, 2010 12:57 PM

    “The best Pro Day I ever saw as a quarterback was JaMarcus Russell. . . . I’ve never seen a quarterback throw the football like that in my life, but I still couldn’t take him in the first round — the guy doesn’t care about football. He doesn’t have the passion for the game, doesn’t have the work ethic, I don’t want him. But by the way, it was a pretty impressive Pro Day.”
    ————————————————–
    Let’s not get this confused. Mayock is saying that he wouldn’t take Russell in the first round AFTER what he’s seen of Russell in the NFL. This is not what he said in 2007. Others have already mentioned what he said in 2007. Mayock is one of the better “Draft Experts” but don’t take a quote from today out of context and attribute it to something he said 3 years ago.
    @ Dogma-
    Don’t spout urban legend as truth. That’s just another rumor floating around out there. Sure it could be true, but it could just as easily be false. Unless you were there, don’t act like your a journalist and write rumors as though it’s absolute fact.

  40. raiders177 says: Mar 30, 2010 12:57 PM

    # Jammal Lord says: March 30, 2010 12:07 PM
    “Tom Cable gave Russell a DVD, it was the game plan on how to attack the Chiefs, Cable told Russell to watch it…. The next day Cable asked Russell what he thought about the game plan and Russell told him it was great and he was on board… The DVD was blank… Tom Cable gave Russell a blank DVD to see if Russell was even doing his homework.
    The next week Russell was benched. ”
    Is that really true?
    ____________________________________
    I’ve heard it before, but it seems like one of those stories meant to depict how inept he is. It could very well be true, but I have a feeling if it was there would have been a bigger deal made about it.

  41. edgy1957 says: Mar 30, 2010 12:57 PM

    r8rsfan says:
    Mike Mayock is far more credible than McShay or Kiper IMO. His analysis of Russell is spot-on.
    ***********************************
    It’s always easy to be right AFTER the fact. You might want to look at how Kiper and Mayock rated the top players of that draft:
    Kiper: Calvin Johnson, Joe Thomas, Adrian Peterson, JaMarcus Russell, Brady Quinn
    Mayock: Calvin Johnson, JaMarcus Russell, Adrian Peterson, Joe Thomas, LaRon Landry
    What did Mayock have to say about Russell:
    Mayock: JaMarcus Russell’s ceiling is as high as any quarterback I have seen coming out of college since John Elway
    Now, I dare anyone here to call him on it. A lot of people try to talk about Todd McWrong and Mayock but they’re still not as good as Kiper.

  42. Nevisyakker says: Mar 30, 2010 1:03 PM

    Russell had great film from college, a great pro day, and a big smile when they finally paid him (remember that he held out for quite a while).
    Once paid, it was time to yawn.
    Reggie Jackson (70s baseball) once said about the challenge of staying hungry when you have gotten the big pay check, “It’s hard to get up in the morning when you are wearing silk pajamas.”
    Bottom line…no guarantees…that is why THERE HAS TO BE A ROOKIE PAY SCALE WITH A 3 YEAR MAX ON THE FIRST CONTRACT.
    After the 3 yrs teams should know what they have and pay accordingly.

  43. JSpicoli says: Mar 30, 2010 1:09 PM

    Any team needing a QB and picking first would have taken him.
    That is a period at the end of the last sentence.
    This is why I hat on the hateful bias towards the Raiders.

  44. edgy1957 says: Mar 30, 2010 1:17 PM

    Here’s the problem with Mayock: he thinks that it’s 1984 and there’s no internet and people have to own his publications, in order to read what he REALLY said. Too many of these guys come out and talk about how they KNEW but then they get screwed when people show what they REALLY said. The ONLY people who buy into his BS are the ones who are too lazy to do any actual research.

  45. Jack Burton says: Mar 30, 2010 1:26 PM

    The 290lb answer for the Raiders, the Raider Nation must be as tired of this crap as the Steelers fans are of these off the field issues.

  46. donkssuk says: Mar 30, 2010 1:33 PM

    too bad russell hurt his throwing finger after the workout opening a twinkee!!! cause he REALLY REALLY SUCKKKSS!!!! please AL get rid of this Fat Albert POS

  47. edgy1957 says: Mar 30, 2010 1:36 PM

    Nevisyakker says:
    Bottom line…no guarantees…that is why THERE HAS TO BE A ROOKIE PAY SCALE WITH A 3 YEAR MAX ON THE FIRST CONTRACT.
    After the 3 yrs teams should know what they have and pay accordingly.
    *************************************
    Here’s the funny thing about that: Joe Willy got $400,000, which the Jets NEVER regretted giving him. The key IS NOT the money but getting them in camp on day 1. Like it or not, most of these guys don’t come out of college with the kind of work ethic that they need for the NFL and they need to be put under supervision quickly to get them into the habit.
    Think about it: Peyton Manning signed quickly and was in camp and working from day 1 but the Raiders diddled with Russell until AFTER the first game. You might be able to survive a top running back showing up just before the last preseason game but if you drafted a QB and hope to make him the starter sooner than later, you need to have him in as quickly as possible. If they had a rookie scale that paid as much as they do now without one or the pennies on the dollar that you and the owners fantasize about, it wouldn’t make a difference because the key would be getting these guys signed as soon as possible.

  48. jb10 says: Mar 30, 2010 2:02 PM

    edgy1957 didn’t alex smith and david carr sign before the draft?

  49. Playoffs?! says: Mar 30, 2010 2:04 PM

    Kiper > Mayock & McShay. I don’t know why people think Mayock is even in the same league as Kiper…

  50. Howie Handles says: Mar 30, 2010 2:07 PM

    He had nice game film, but he also had a helluva team around him. Lots of guys are studs in college, but the NFL is a man’s game, not a kids game.
    I can understand why teams would attend a pro day or the combine, but unless scouting and game film doesn’t count for at least 80% of your evaluation, you’re going to have problems in the draft. It still kills me when teams draft athletes vs football players. They’re not training for the decathalon.

  51. Tdk24 says: Mar 30, 2010 2:11 PM

    “Tom Cable gave Russell a DVD, it was the game plan on how to attack the Chiefs, Cable told Russell to watch it…. The next day Cable asked Russell what he thought about the game plan and Russell told him it was great and he was on board… The DVD was blank… Tom Cable gave Russell a blank DVD to see if Russell was even doing his homework.”
    I really really really hope that is not true.

  52. edgy1957 says: Mar 30, 2010 2:49 PM

    jb10 says:
    edgy1957 didn’t alex smith and david carr sign before the draft?
    ****************************
    In the first place, Alex Smith did NOT sign before the draft (He signed in July) and in the second place, raise your hand if you even entertained the notion that Alex Smith was the first choice of the draft. I didn’t even consider him a first round draft choice or any better than the 4th best QB, let alone the first pick because of all of his flaws. Smith was the Tebow of his draft and it was going to take two or three years to make him into an NFL starter. The 49ers reached for him.

  53. Pauljc3 says: Mar 30, 2010 4:21 PM

    I didn’t see jbusts pro day and i knew he was a bust!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  54. RaiderChile says: Mar 30, 2010 4:58 PM

    If the Three Stooges (Kiper, Mayock and the other guy) were so good at picking talent, why are they not working for a NFL team?
    Because they are hyped up couch GM’s and couldn’t make it in the real pros. Pathetic losers, all of them!

  55. comment_submission_error says: Mar 30, 2010 8:08 PM

    anjelmanning says: March 30, 2010 11:48 AM
    Kiper and McShit I’m retarded –
    ——————
    Yes, we know. But thanks for playing.

  56. Raiders757 says: Mar 30, 2010 8:13 PM

    Well that’s one thing Dan Patrick and I agree on. I never wanted my Raiders pick Russell, and was pissed when they did. Great arm, great pro day, and great potential can’t make up for a lack of will. The kid was highly overrated coming into the draft, and now he’s highly overpaid.
    He’s a Raider now, so I’m stuck having to hope he shapes up, but odds are that is just not going to happen. The kid never had “it”, and never will.

  57. Raiders757 says: Mar 30, 2010 8:41 PM

    @ Raider3:16
    I remember a lot of people voicing “those concerns” as you call them. It’s just that you chose to either not hear of them, or were too busy to not do your homework. I’m not even a draft expert and I was vehemently against drafting Russell. His dedication and leadership were called into play over and over again throughout his collage career as well as before the draft. The kid should have never even been considered a first rounder.
    What really blows my mind, is how many of my fellow Raiders fans didn’t take the time to know this about Russell before the draft. There is only a handful I can think of who knew it would be a mistake to draft him, and when we got upset about it, the rest of the Raider Nation ripped on us. Look who’s laughing now. The sad part, is that it’s not funny, because I really wish I was wrong.
    On top of all that, set the known issues with Russell aside, and Raiders fans should have a clue that our favorite team just isn’t known for developing young QB talent. You don’t draft a QB at the #1 overall position with the offensive line we have and history we have with developing young QB’s. Al Davis god a woody over the arm of a kid who just isn’t smart enough to play at the NFL level, not dedicated enough. It’s the dumbest move the man ever made.

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