Zac Boyer will be entering his third season covering the Washington Redskins for The Free Lance-Star this fall. Make sure to follow Zac on Twitter (@ZacBoyer) for the latest updates or e-mail him with any questions at email@example.com.
Top QB prospect Sam Bradford holds his Pro Day
Top quarterback prospect Sam Bradford held his Pro Day this afternoon at Oklahoma University, as he continues his quest to reassure teams that his surgically repaired right (throwing) shoulder is healthy ahead of next month’s draft.
Redskins general manager Bruce Allen attended the workout, along with representatives from nearly every NFL team, according to a Yahoo! Sports report from Norman. The session was broadcast online by Oklahoma’s athletic department, which, I must say, was really cool of them to do.
Bradford, wearing a t-shirt and shorts, threw more than 50 passes and appeared quite sharp. His characteristic accuracy was on full display during a variety of scripted throws to all areas of the field.
Gauging Bradford’s arm strength is a high priority for scouts following his shoulder surgery last October. That was impossible for viewers watching the broadcast, but we’ll soon find out whether that was up to par.
Successful scouts know not to let these scripted workouts factor too heavily into their final evaluations of a player. How well players play in pads in actual game situations is the biggest influence.
Bradford checks out in that regard, too, of course. The 2008 Heisman Trophy winner has proven on the field that–if healthy–he’d provide the St. Louis Rams with quality value as the No. 1 overall pick.
Regarding how the Pro Day factors in, ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay opined 11 days ago that Bradford’s workout served simply as a chance for him to tighten his grasp on that top pick.
“I think right now it’s more than a 50-50 chance that Bradford winds up going No. 1,” McShay said. “Unless something is fundamentally wrong—if his throwing motion is different or changed, if he’s not getting enough zip on the ball—I don’t think that the Pro Day will affect the opportunity for him to be the No. 1 pick.”
Bradford at least had the fundamentals down today. He demonstrated his ability to throw on the run and make throws to all areas of the field. He also dropped back from center on most of his throws, which scouts want to see considering he threw mostly out of the shotgun in college.
The Redskins’ options at No. 4 will be dramatically impacted by the Rams’ choice because both teams are closely scouting quarterbacks and looking for upgrades. In fact, the broadcast of today’s workout showed Rams coach Steve Spagnuolo talking to Bradford almost immediately after the session finished.
Redskins officials will work out Bradford privately on April 15, four days before St. Louis is scheduled to do the same. So regardless of how highly the Redskins grade Bradford, it’s looking more and more like they won’t get the chance to draft him.