The mystery of Terrelle Pryor

Terrelle Pryor #6 of the Oakland Raiders

One of the most frequent questions on the minds of Raider fans these days is where Terrelle Pryor fits into the Raiders offense. He came out of Ohio State as a Rose Bowl winning quarterback. He has good size and great athleticism and the combination of those things had the Raiders use a third round pick on him in the supplemental draft.

Pryor entered the supplemental draft to try and escape the five game suspension that was placed on him by the NCAA for receiving improper benefits during his three years at Ohio State. Unfortunately for him, Goodell would have none of that and honored the NCAA suspension at the NFL level.

Due to the lockout, the supplemental draft didn't happen until training camp had already started. A week later, he joined his new teammates for the first time. Even though once camp was over, he would no longer be able to be on the roster or even practice with the team until week six.

Pryor to his arrival, Hue Jackson was already expected to give him the Darren McFadden treatment which was to put together plays just for him that cater to his strengths.

"Whatever it is that he does well, we will accentuate that," said Hue Jackson.

And if Pryor's first day in camp was any indication, that play list wouldn't be very long. On that first day he looked downright terrible. He was unable to execute even the simplest short passes. Each pass would wobble and fall either short, wide, or behind the receiver or all of the above. He also fumbled about as many snaps as he actually handled. There is rust, there's nerves, and then there was we saw that day. At time he looked like he had never touched a football before.

"It was a lot of information in one day, but I'll get used to it," said Pryor. "The problem is that now I'm 17, 18 days, practices behind right now. I'm just playing catch up right now. Some of the stuff is getting there, and I'm starting to get familiar with some of the stuff. But it's been one day. Give me a couple of days, and I should be able to fill it in and feel a lot more comfortable.

"[I'm] not nervous, but you're getting so much information and you're just trying to ... my mind wants to accomplish it, I want to accomplish it. But it's just overwhelming."

He did appear to have settled in a bit after that. Although it was still a rarity to see a pass leave his hand that was a tight, on-target spiral. His long passes were either off target or easily defended. And the velocity on his passes just wasn't there.

When asked questions about whether he was going to be a quarterback for the Raiders, he deferred to Hue Jackson. But he insisted he was determined to play quarterback and "can't envision myself playing any other position". This despite saying in the workouts leading up to the supplemental draft that he would be willing to play whatever position a team wanted him to play.

Once camp finished and weekly practices began, Pryor was on an alternating schedule from the rest of the team. As they were leaving the field to hit the showers, he was getting suited up. And feeling like a ghost was visibly frustrating for him during that time.

Continue reading in Part 2...

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