I genuinely believe he could go that early. Certainly within the top 40 picks.
And he’s very much an option for the Seahawks at #32.
Earlier in the week I sat down and watched three Clemson games again — Syracuse, Maryland and Georgia Tech.
I want to highlight some plays to back up why he could be an early pick in May:
1:42 — Bryant eats up the cushion and gets the defensive back to turn his hips. He sells the route perfectly, giving the impression he’s running downfield. He’s looking straight on, his body is positioned to run beyond the corner. Instead he cuts inside, creating ample separation before making a difficult low grab. A better throw there (and it’s a shocker by Tajh Boyd) and you’re looking at major YAC.
1:48 — It’s a blown coverage, and that’s why he scores the touchdown. But I’m going to highlight scoring plays here too.
2:09 — This is what we want to see. He exploits another bad job in coverage, with the corner passing him off too easily. The safety’s coming over the top and Bryant can hear the footsteps. Even so he maintains concentration, completes the catch and absorbs a big hit. That’s one of the toughest things to do. Ask Vernon Davis.
0:16 — The Seahawks want to own the red line. This is a great example. Bryant is in complete control of this route. He knows where he wants to go, he knows he’s getting a back shoulder throw. The corner’s playing to his tune. The back shoulder is the toughest pass to defend as a DB. But you still have to set up, and Bryant does that here. It’s a really crisp route. He deliberately drives to the outside, making it seem like he’s running deep down the sideline. The corner is so concerned about getting beat, it’s relatively easy to adjust and catch the ball on the turn. Great technique.
0:27 — He doesn’t put the guy on his backside, but Bryant’s block here in the run game helped Clemson get a first down.
0:57 — Just a really smart corner route. Finds a soft zone between two defenders, dissects the pair and he’s wide open for the target. This is again about perfecting your craft. He’s not doing anything spectacular here, just his job. Clemson coach their receivers very well and you can see that with Bryant on this play. He knows what he needs to do to make a play. But that also takes work and time on the practise field.
1:09 — This is a terrible throw by Boyd and should’ve been picked. Bryant turns into the defender and manages to smack the ball out of the hands of the corner. This is a big time play, helping his team avoid a turnover. See the replay. Nobody can doubt his commitment and effort.
1:56 — Downfield shot. Doesn’t high point the football but still makes a difficult grab between two defenders for a big 41 yard gain. Seattle loves to take shots like this on play action. Look at the route again. Little stop and go at the top, then he flies downfield. The pass is actually badly under-thrown. Bryant beats the corner and if this is thrown deeper towards the end zone, it’s a touchdown.
0:10 — Again Bryant is let down by his quarterback. He’s got the guy beat on the right sideline. Boyd guides him out of bounds with a wayward pass. If this is thrown out in front of the receiver and into the end zone with a straighter trajectory, it’s a touchdown. Bryant flat out beats the guy and creates separation.
0:33 — Tight coverage downfield, but Bryant makes a difficult catch for a big 47 yard gain. I’m being a bit nitpicky here, but I reckon a softer, higher throw into the end zone and Bryant wins the foot race for a touchdown. It’s a very basic go route on this occasion, nothing special here. But he can make plays like this with his size and speed. And once again, it’s the type of shot Seattle loves to make. They want to go after single coverage.
1:05 — Beats the corner, gets separation and runs away from the defense for a big touchdown. The coverage is terrible — the safety doesn’t sense the danger and come across to help the cornerback. But look how Bryant capitalises for a 76 yard score. One little sniff of a chance and he’s racing into the end zone. And let’s be right — it’s bad safety play. But he completely dominates the corner with a little shimmy. If you look at the replay Clemson uses Sammy Watkins as a decoy in the backfield to draw the safety’s attention. He doesn’t bite, it’s just lousy coverage. But the Seahawks can use a similar play design with Percy Harvin in the backfield and Bryant flying downfield.
2:41 — Classic Seahawks-style shot. Running back comes up to block, Boyd throws down the right sideline trying to win versus single coverage. Bryant competes for the ball in the air and makes a really tough catch for a huge gain. How does he catch this ball? He’s fighting off a blatant hold, he’s got arms all over him. That is special.
I get the feeling Seattle’s been looking for a receiver like this. Not necessarily a pure big man. But a big man with wheels who can compete for the ball and make chunk plays.
Sidney Rice is not a traditional big receiver, but he competes like crazy and makes difficult grabs. He also had enough speed to win downfield (see: game-winner vs New England).
Bryant is like a taller version of Rice with Ricardo Lockette’s athleticism. He runs a 4.42 at nearly 6-4 and 211lbs. He’s competitive (as noted with the hit in the Syracuse game and the way he wins those 50/50 throws downfield in single coverage), but he’s a shade off Rice’s intense energy.
It’s no biggie, though.
There’s plenty of examples where he gets involved in the running game. And that’s what we need to see.
I like the example vs Ohio State below. Fast forward to 0:09:
Boyd takes it in for a score on a keeper. Even when he’s home and hosed, Bryant sprints to get involved and cuts across Ryan Shazier to get in his face and just make absolutely sure.
On the next play in that video, he makes a key block on the left hand sideline.
And while we’re getting into the Ohio State game, look at the fade for a touchdown at 1:34.
Do you need to see any more to believe in this guy?
I found this Tweet interesting today:
Told the New York Jets showing heavy interest in Martavis Bryant/WR/Clemson…
— Tony Pauline (@TonyPauline) March 20, 2014
Don’t be shocked at all if he goes as high as #18. There’s a TON of potential here.
Bob McGinn quoted an unnamed scout referring to him as a “knucklehead”. Do your homework on him. See how he checks out.
Bryant’s definitely shy during interviews. He’s not a good talker like former teammates Sammy Watkins or Nuke Hopkins. His on-field personality is pretty much what you want to see, however. There’s a spark there.
He does have some drops on tape — it’s not all great. But overall there’s a lot to like here.
And some teams will want a bigger receiver. That’s just the way it is. Odell Beckham Jr and Brandin Cooks are very good football players. But they’re sub-6-0.
If you want size, you can get size in this draft. It doesn’t stop with Mike Evans and Kelvin Benjamin.
Some people think guys like Bryant and Donte Moncrief will last until rounds two or three. The more I study, they could easily be part of a mass exodus of receivers leaving the board on day one.
Seattle will be lucky to have Bryant as an option at #32. The more you watch of him, the more there is to like.
Sometimes it just takes a little longer to realise these things.
Q&A with Kenny
— Kenneth Arthur (@KennethArthurS) March 21, 2014
I conducted a Q&A session with Kenneth Arthur at Field Gulls. You’ll find a link in the Tweet above.
Check it out.
Latest Jared Allen news
Two more teams I was a bit surprised about jumped into fray so he's taking a little more time
— Jay Glazer (@JayGlazer) March 21, 2014
Jay Glazer and Jared Allen are tight. This info is legit.
It seems the main motivation behind Allen’s return home for a good think is the other offers on the table.
Here’s my best guess:
— Seattle is offering less money than he wanted, perhaps substantially so. But they’ve also given a hard sell and he knows it’ll be a chance to play for a great team with an unmatched home-field advantage.
— Two teams not as close to contending are offering more money than Seattle. So in the end he has to decide whether to take the hit on the salary to play for a better club, go where the value is or simply do something else with his life.