Ex-Raider James Jones: Martavis Bryant not picking up Gruden’s playbook

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Former Raiders wide receiver James Jones says current Raiders wide receiver Martavis Bryant is having a rough training camp.

Jones said on NFL Network that he talked to Raiders offensive coordinator Greg Olson, and Olson told him Bryant hasn’t learned the playbook.

“I just had a chance to speak with Coach Olson and he said talent-wise, there’s probably nobody that can compete with [Bryant] talent-wise,” Jones said. “But they said he’s not picking up the playbook, and that’s the reason of a little frustration right now because they want to get him on the field but he’s not able to grasp the playbook yet.”

Jones said Bryant can’t move around the way receivers usually do because the Raiders are trying to simplify Bryant’s learning process by having him line up in the same place on every play.

“They’ve only got him lining up in one spot to try to slow it down and help him out,” Jones said. “They need him to pick it up.”

Jones’ comments echo those of Raiders head coach Jon Gruden, who said Bryant needs to play better and master the offense. The Raiders traded a third-round draft pick for Bryant, and so far he doesn’t seem to be performing the way they were expecting.

65 responses to “Ex-Raider James Jones: Martavis Bryant not picking up Gruden’s playbook

  1. Playbook? Martavis knows one play…..run down the field in a straight line as fast as he can. He doesn’t need a playbook!!

  2. minnesotablizzard says:
    August 8, 2018 at 1:30 pm
    I think Aaron Rodgers will be missing Jordy Nelson this season when he sees him tearing it up for the Raiders

    ———–

    More like Jordy Nelson will be missing Aaron Rogers when he has Derek Carr under-throwing him time after time

  3. So he’s a rock.

    Just read the thing every waking moment while not on the field.

    So many talented players fail because competing against yourself, to be the best you can be (see Rice, Jerry) regardless of natural talent, makes all the difference in the world. See also Steve Smith.

    You screw the future and the future will screw you. Talented or otherwise…

  4. This is still just football we’re talking about here, right? And the guy is 6ft4 220lbs and runs a 4.3 forty? Don’t overcomplicate things, Gruden, with your Double Jet Z-Post scatter 2 motion left offset cowboy Spider2 Y-Banana malarkey.

  5. So Gruden knows his playbook is complex. So why in the world wouldn’t you call around the league and figure out if this guy would be a good fit before you trade such a premium pick? I mean it’s not like there was a recently fired OC who would have been all to eager to dish on his old team and their personnel available to take calls, especially if he got a few drinks in him allegedly. Just seems logical to me, but what do I know?

  6. Why spend your free time trying to learn the playbook when you can smoke blunts & play Fortnite? Ain’t like this is a job or anything..

  7. It’s still early. This is still practice. Not the game but practice. I mean we talkin about practice. We talking about practice. Not the game.. practice..

    Lol – Dude better get rockin – I’ve heard that there are some backups behind him that are doing well. Going to be interesting.

  8. This is why it’s important to do homework on players before trading for them. But just 10 more years of this until Gruden’s gigantic contract is done! And just think how many people other than himself will be blamed in that span.

  9. Carr definitely has the skill-set, both mentally and physically, to learn Chucky’s extravagant offense. Martavis, on the other hand, has the physical ability to dominate, but that’s only half of what one needs to successfully implement that playbook. I hope they can dumb it down enough for him to utilize his abilities. If not, Ateman, Switzer, and Seth Roberts will be fighting for that 3rd and 4th spot on the receiving corps.

    On another note, is Edgar Bennett having a hard time with this as well? They’re paying him good money to get these receivers up to par.

  10. rideforjesus says:
    August 8, 2018 at 1:36 pm
    Man that says it all… why he was let go from the Steelers…….

    ———

    Schuster made him expendable. They found a comparable guy without the lazy attitude and off-the-field issues.

  11. vicnocal says:
    August 8, 2018 at 1:45 pm
    This is still just football we’re talking about here, right? And the guy is 6ft4 220lbs and runs a 4.3 forty? Don’t overcomplicate things, Gruden, with your Double Jet Z-Post scatter 2 motion left offset cowboy Spider2 Y-Banana malarkey.

    —————

    Maybe he believes that Bryant has more potential than he’s shown so far. No sense letting a player get away with being just good if you feel he has the attributes to be great. Settling for less is just lazy coaching.

  12. He left Pittsburgh because of his off the field shenanigans but he also demanded to be traded. So I am pretty sure it was not because of his ability, or lack thereof, of understanding Todd Haley’s playbook (now Randy Fichtner)

  13. Little surprise here – Bryant is dumber than a bag of rocks.

    Thanks again Raiders for that 3rd Rounder. Lotsa luck with what you got in exchange.

  14. If trading a 3rd rounder for a player likely to be cut was the only boneheaded roster move made by Gruden then that would be awful enough. But this was just one of many moronic/egotistical moves made by the “coaching legend” that have significantly damaged the Raiders’ roster.

    100 mil. guaranteed on a mediocre HC that no other team wanted to hire was also bad enough but giving him wide-ranging GM powers proves again why Son-of-Al is right there with Jimmy Haslam (who hired Hue Jackson) as the worst owner in the league.

  15. Big surprise. It’s ironic. He thinks he is one of the best WRs in the game but those top guys are in that position because they work hard at their craft and watch a lot of tape. Bryant can’t even bother to learn the playbook. That pretty much says it all about Bryant. Sure, he has the talent. That was never the question. The question was between the ears.

  16. Gruden is just ahead of the curve – most people only try to make excuses AFTER going to Vegas.

  17. prestige27 says:
    August 8, 2018 at 1:58 pm
    Carr definitely has the skill-set, both mentally and physically, to learn Chucky’s extravagant offense.

    ———–

    Please child…..

  18. Another steeler meathead. They shoulda learned with MWallace. Starting to seem like Gruden id gonna be a disaster.

  19. He had a hard time learning the playbook with the Steelers. His first year any questions involving what he was doing on the field was typically answered by him saying, “Go route”. Not because that was the best way to utilize his skillset, but mainly because that’s really all he could grasp in the offense. It’s not surprising at all that he is struggling to pick up a new offense.

  20. Unless Bryant gets a tutor and gets his head on straight, he will be done before the first game of the season. Finished. Goodbye.

    Gruden has no tolerance for this crap and will (to his own hurt) cut bait.

    He already issued the first “salvo” last week when criticizing Martavis’ lack of progress. That was Martavis’ first and only warning.

  21. Randy Moss, he is not ~ Actually he could run any route but down the field in a straight line is what he was most known for ~ And he did oh so well ~

    This was a bad trade for the Raiders ~

  22. It seems odd to me that you couldn’t or wouldn’t figure out a players football I.Q. before getting him on your team no?

    I get that people don’t like Martavis personality though.

    I’m a Pats fan, but Pittsburgh has been the best team by far in the NFL at picking wide receivers. It’s amazing just the guys they have drafted from Big Ben on, and it’s not like the Steelers have some simplistic low scoring offense. I find it hard to believe Bryant can’t adjust in Oakland.

  23. troubledoneswhobathe says:

    August 8, 2018 at 2:43 pm

    And with the first pick in the 2019 Draft, the San Antonio Raiders select……….
    ————————-
    Dude, they’ll win at least 7 games.

  24. And when they say playbook, we think of a book. But today’s playbook are animations and videos. For advanced teams, 3D VR. So basically this guy lacks the IQ to understand and remember what he watches.

    Think of that the next time someone complains about you being a loaf who watches too much football. At least you are smarter than Martavis Bryant.

  25. If this dude can get his act together in the Raiders wide receivers should be the best of the AFC West

  26. “I’m a Pats fan, but Pittsburgh has been the best team by far in the NFL at picking wide receivers. It’s amazing just the guys they have drafted from Big Ben on, and it’s not like the Steelers have some simplistic low scoring offense. I find it hard to believe Bryant can’t adjust in Oakland.”

    Ben was important to that success as was the eye of Colbert and Tomlin but the biggest reason was WR coach Richard Mann. He knew how to amplify the skill set of the guys and get the best from them. You have Buress, Wallace, Brown, Sanders, Juju, Bryant. And don’t forget the great season Cotchery had with the Steelers when they brought him on.

  27. Reminds me of Jerome Simpson – word on the street every year was that Simpson was the most athletically gifted WR on the Cincinnati roster, but so dumb he didn’t know where to line up half the time, so he rarely saw any action.

  28. Perhaps they should draw up the playbook w/ crayons, and have Bryant listen to an instructive CD while riding around in his tricked-out wheels.

  29. thelastwordyaheard says:
    August 8, 2018 at 1:49 pm
    Why spend your free time trying to learn the playbook when you can smoke blunts & play Fortnite? Ain’t like this is a job or anything..

    When earning the big bucks you need to put in the big effort.
    Get him a tutor (he should pay for one) and make sure he is working on it when not sleeping.
    No excuses for not putting in the work at this level.

  30. vicnocal says:
    August 8, 2018 at 1:45 pm
    This is still just football we’re talking about here, right? And the guy is 6ft4 220lbs and runs a 4.3 forty? Don’t overcomplicate things, Gruden
    ==================================

    If all it takes to be a successful WR is to be big and run in a straight line, then the NFL would be full of just track stars. Usain Bolt would be on an NFL team right now. Oh wait, that doesn’t work if they can’t run a route or catch a pass. NFL defenses are full of really fast guys as well.

  31. Bryant is an ignoramus. He’s a great athlete, but he is simply not intelligent enough to read the playbook, understand how the offense works or comprehend is role in it.

  32. I think the 49ers had to simplify some things for Jerry Rice too. That didn’t seem to be a huge problem. When you have a really sophisticated system, it’s tough your first couple weeks.

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