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JaMarcus Russell’s comeback effort progressing slowly

Jamarcus Russell Getty Images

It would be hard to find anyone who thinks the chances of former Raiders first overall pick JaMarcus Russell making it back to the NFL are anything but a long shot.

Bleacher Report has been documenting Russell’s comeback efforts at the TEST Football Academy and the latest installment covers a simulated pro day workout for Russell. Russell ran the 40 in 5.2 seconds, cleared 29 inches in the vertical leap and hit 7’4″ in the broad jump. All of those are well short of the goals set by his trainers, including former NFL quarterback Jeff Garcia who said Russell is “naturally gifted.”

The trainers remain optimistic about his chances of reaching those goals as he continues to work out. Russell shares that belief.

“I’m heavier than normal,” Russell said. “This is just getting some perspective on where we’re at. Once the pro day comes, I’ll be in some great shape and my numbers will excel.”

Russell seems to be working hard, something that wasn’t always the case during his tenure with the Raiders, but we still think TEST CEO Brett Martin showed a flair for understatement when he said that Russell has “some hills to climb” in the coming weeks if he is going to return to the league after being released by the Raiders in 2010.

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44 Responses to “JaMarcus Russell’s comeback effort progressing slowly”
  1. fuglyflorio says: Feb 20, 2013 10:29 AM

    Sidetracked by an all-you-can-eat buffet.

  2. slugdub says: Feb 20, 2013 10:30 AM

    “progressing slowly”…is anybody really surprised? the guys a clown.

  3. raiderufan says: Feb 20, 2013 10:37 AM

    Dude should just bulk up to 320 and become a tackle.

  4. norvturnersneck says: Feb 20, 2013 10:40 AM

    Progressing to a moo-moo to hide some of his flab.

  5. freepretzels says: Feb 20, 2013 10:40 AM

    I don’t think he’ll ever play in the NFL again, but I will say that he’s a very large man and these aren’t bad stats in general.

    Frankly, he needs to get in shape for his own sake.

  6. steelbydesign says: Feb 20, 2013 10:40 AM

    I know all the comments here will be bad jokes about Jamarcus’ weight, but it honestly sounds like he’s working harder than he ever did with the Raiders.

    Russell went to possibly the worst locker room he could have if he had issues with staying motivated. If he is in decent shape, would it really be a bad idea for a team to sign him to the vet minimum and bring him into camp to compete as a backup?

    If he slacks at all you cut him and really lose nothing. Teams bring in camp arms every year with no expectations to make the team. Why not bring in a guy that has some natural ability and see what your coaches can do with him?

  7. mullman76 says: Feb 20, 2013 10:42 AM

    You skewered him a bit on this one Alper. I watched the links that were included in the ‘wednesday morning one liners’.

    Those numbers (5.2 sec 40yd, etc) were used as his baseline, THEN his goals were set.

    He does have a long way to go (like losing 40lbs), but you spun that one a bit.

  8. phiddysent says: Feb 20, 2013 10:42 AM

    Gotta give the man some credit for trying. At least he didn’t throw in the towel and just go rot away.

  9. socalraider909 says: Feb 20, 2013 10:44 AM

    Keep up the hard work big fella and you’ll be starting for the Jets in a couple of seasons

  10. 69firebird says: Feb 20, 2013 10:47 AM

    Now I know why the Raiders picked him

  11. therealraider says: Feb 20, 2013 10:48 AM

    Dude … Dont waste your time writing a Jamarcus Russell article.

  12. lurkerkerker says: Feb 20, 2013 10:51 AM

    Yeah, JaMarcus blew it. but he’s trying to reclaim his life. If the only thing that happens is that he sheds some weight and adds a few years to his life, it’s worth it.

  13. mrstinkypants says: Feb 20, 2013 10:51 AM

    Not bad stats if he was a lineman.

  14. justintuckrule says: Feb 20, 2013 10:52 AM

    I think it’s time for people to start giving the guy a break. If someone dropped 60 mil on me at age 20, I probably would have shut it down too. Seems like the guy really is trying to turn over a new leaf. I’m a sucker for a comeback story so I hope he does it.

  15. sweded775 says: Feb 20, 2013 10:54 AM

    Pssh.. lol Slow progress is still progress.

  16. tcostant says: Feb 20, 2013 10:59 AM

    Just to think that Al Davis refused to pay the rest of Lane Kiffin’s contract because Kiffin wanted them to draft Calvin Johnson instead of Russell. Who is laughing now?

  17. rdrs68 says: Feb 20, 2013 10:59 AM

    Naturally gifted? sounds like a nice way of saying what everyone knows; dude’s a big fat bust.

  18. lannister1 says: Feb 20, 2013 11:00 AM

    Pretty sure Tom Brady would run a 6.2 forty.

  19. blackbug99 says: Feb 20, 2013 11:02 AM

    He had a skill set and lost his way with the coming of money. People, most of us have lost our way in younger years (Granted, to a lesser bank account). So, I say forgive/forget and watch. It’s not like we’re paying the guy.

  20. raiders85 says: Feb 20, 2013 11:06 AM

    Jawalrus Ruffles progressing slow huh ? who would have thought that I guess it’s time for this gravy sweating slob to get back on the drank and continue to be the absolute biggest bust and worthless human ever allowed in the NFL stay classy with your fat a$$

  21. rickastleydancemoves says: Feb 20, 2013 11:09 AM

    I’m just impressed by that 40 time. Dude is as blazing fast as offensive lineman.

  22. vicksprman says: Feb 20, 2013 11:11 AM

    I agree with tuckrule, man drop 60 million on a 20 year old who never was known to be a workout warrior and that had disaster written all over it. At least he hasn’t blown the money by most counts and is trying to get into shape if not NFL shape then add more years to his life shape.

  23. norcalmikey says: Feb 20, 2013 11:11 AM

    Jamarcus has been seen at his local Golden Corral partaking in their new buffet selections. This may have a little to do with that slow 40 time.

  24. jblandbeardown says: Feb 20, 2013 11:12 AM

    I agree w/ earlier posted along lines of numbers being baseline. I think in a month or 2 all numbers will be drastically better. Which will make him “look” better and make the TEST and Garcia look like QB whisperers. Just my guess

  25. trspat says: Feb 20, 2013 11:16 AM

    The weight issues aside, I remember sitting in tiger stadium slamming my fist because he NEVER could spot the open man! I laughed when he was drafted and said biggest bust ever. Lsu won a title the year before he took over and the year after! Yeah he had many combacks, but that’s because he had them in the hole against inferior teams. Enough with this guy… Please!

  26. rcali says: Feb 20, 2013 11:18 AM

    Crazy Al Davis. I really miss his draft day decisions.

  27. tformation says: Feb 20, 2013 11:18 AM

    To lose 40 pounds, JaMarcus should climb some literal hills.

    Having said that, no shame in being a “camp arm” or a clipboard jesus. Dennis Dixon, Charlie Batch are good examples. Both are great backup QBs for the Steelers with great careers. An even better example is someone like Schaub who was able to take that backup role and turn it into a starting one with a different team.

    However, you need humility for the role of backup QB or camp arm. Hard to tell if JaMarcus is humble enough to take either of those roles…

  28. djcologne says: Feb 20, 2013 11:22 AM

    The guy has been stealing pay checks for years….why are we talking about this oxygen bandit???

  29. d3murf says: Feb 20, 2013 11:22 AM

    SMH at slanted journalism. Its week 2 of his comeback that’s all being documented on video. I hope his progress is coming along slowly considering its like his 4th or 5th workout and they were trying to see where hes STARTING from to see where he’ll be at in 6 or so weeks. Trying to drum up comments is lame when it’s based off negativity. Tell the whole story.

  30. metalhead65 says: Feb 20, 2013 11:31 AM

    how about we read nothing more about this loser until and if he makes this comeback? he deserves all the ridicule he gets for having it all and blowing it. young or not he knew what he was getting into when he was drafted. if he was half the player and man as his hype claimed then he would have shown more than he did. sure money changes people but it also shows their true selves. he chose to do drugs and live the high life when there were plenty of examples out there of what happens to you when you choose that life. he chose it anyway so he got what he deserved. if you expect me to feel sorry for somebody who got 30 million dollars and chose to blow his career on drugs and partying then you are sadly mistaken.

  31. drunkraider says: Feb 20, 2013 11:51 AM

    do not give this guy the ” at least he is trying “.

    This clown held out for a ton of money, blew it in the NFL was to lazy to even watch tape let alone get in shape.

    The ONLY reason why he is doing this is because he is running out of money already.

  32. chalkruz1989 says: Feb 20, 2013 11:57 AM

    I was really happy to hear about JaMarcus Russell making a return. I don’t like how quarterbacks are quickly labeled bust when it’s clear that their supporting cast was downright miserable.

    I will not argue that Russell played poor and didn’t make the best decisions, but, he was asked to come in and start for a malign team without a proven track record in college.

    While at LSU, Russell had some high moments but he was not the best player coming out of that draft. The Oakland Raiders really made their mark by drafting talented players and having them rot away.

    Best of luck to him and his journey to get back to the NFL. He could have just thrown in the towel but he’s being resilient.

    And for those who are judging a man by his mistakes are hypocrites. He was a young man when he was given over 50 million dollars. I would love to see how you would handle that, I am sure you would invest and make all of the right decisions.

    I’ve made plenty of mistakes but I don’t have a camera following my every move and millions to blow. I don’t use a sports site to sit on my throne and judge others.

  33. redmanalishi says: Feb 20, 2013 12:10 PM

    Progressing slowly. Like a nice slow cooked ham. Or baked all day like a turkey. Or a nice big cheeseburger. With fries and a drink, and some of those little chicken bits. Better yet, two cheeseburgers, made fresh and fast. Yup, my comeback is progressing some quickly now. -JM

  34. banky74 says: Feb 20, 2013 12:12 PM

    “I’m heavier than normal,” Russell said.

    Jamarcus, you make it awfully tough not to make fun of you when you just softball them in at us.

  35. keylimelight says: Feb 20, 2013 12:50 PM

    Seems like Jamarcus put the cart before the horse, and that his trainers are merely looking at his abilities vs. focusing on helping him trim weight–which would contribute greatly to improve the results that they are measuring.

    I think his first goal should be toning and trimming his body. Getting down to his college weight (or better) and maintaining it, would go a long way in demonstrating that he can be disciplined and is a serious contender.

    All the ‘natural gifts’ in the world won’t help you if you’re lumbering around the backfield or covered by a pile of spry defensive linemen.

  36. poprox13 says: Feb 20, 2013 12:59 PM

    Russell has “some hills to climb”…….

    maybe he can just eat his way through those hills?

  37. freepretzels says: Feb 20, 2013 1:00 PM

    Everyone talks about 5.2 like its lumbering. If you take an average sized person off the street, they tend to run in the 6s, maybe high 5s.

    A man near 300lbs running that fast is very impressive in person.

  38. rayguyreturns says: Feb 20, 2013 1:11 PM

    His problem isn’t his weight, it’s his heart. There isn’t any.

  39. raiderssf says: Feb 20, 2013 1:14 PM

    I will never forget the time I met JaMarcus Russell. Robert Gallery was holding a charity event for the families of the 4 Oakland Police Officers that were murdered. Russell came out signed autographs and talked with the fans. Whatever he did with his money is his business. His immaturity on the Raiders severly hurt my team, which ticks me off. But coming from someone whose family is in law enforcement, it meant a lot to me to see him there raising money for the familes.

  40. steelerben says: Feb 20, 2013 1:25 PM

    I’m not certain that he is going to be able to make it all the way back to the NFL, but it is disheartening to see so many people actively rooting for someone to fail.

    He had a chance. He blew it because he was young and stupid. If he’s matured and still has a god given gift, I hope he finally figures out how not to waste it.

  41. dolphandan says: Feb 20, 2013 2:33 PM

    At 300 pounds I would have to say he is bit QBese.

  42. lovetron says: Feb 20, 2013 3:37 PM

    It’s cute how he’s trying.

  43. TD Hawk says: Feb 20, 2013 6:25 PM

    I’m a HUGE proponent of self-improvement; but, if he makes it back to the NFL, that would be TECTONIC behavioral change.

  44. raiderapologist says: Feb 20, 2013 11:45 PM

    Progress is always slow on the Codeine Expressway. Everyone is in the right-hand lane doing 20 under the speed limit, swilling grape juice and sitting on the balance of 30 million free dollars. Russell is a lottery winner, not a professional athlete.

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