The Raiders staff, including Dennis Allen and Greg Olson, were in Louisville today for the Pro Day of top prospect, Teddy Bridgewater. And from the sounds of it, Bridgewater was not impressive.
Bridgewater opted not to throw at the combine in favor of showing his passing skills in the friendly confines of his home field, throwing to more familiar receivers. That alone is not uncommon. Johnny Manziel also opted not to throw at the combine. All the while, top prospect Blake Bortles did throw and threw very well.
Deciding to wait to throw at his own Pro Day doesn't lower his stock. It does, however, put some pressure on him to perform well at his Pro Day. Bridgewater did not, according to several on hand, including NFL Network draft guru, Mike Mayock.
"Most quarterbacks have good pro days," said Mayock. "To be honest I expected a little more. Today, I thought it was very average at best."
His passes were said to lack zip and accuracy. Though accuracy was something he was known for in college (71% completions), most of those were short to intermediate passes in an offense tailored to him. NFL scouts and coaches want to see players perform NFL passes that are often not in their comfort zone.
That's what the combine and Pro Days are for the player to show they are more than just a successful college quarterback. They need to show the NFL they can take their game to the next level. Bridgewater didn't do that today.
Shortly after Bridgewater's workout in front of Raiders scouts and coaches, the two had a private interview set up. Not the best impression to leave on a team with a top five pick which is very much in need of a quarterback.
Mayock went on to evoke the name of a certain former colossal bust quarterback as a bit of a qualifier for Bridgewater's poor performance.
"JaMarcus Russell had the best Pro Day I ever saw."
This comparison seems like a complete non-sequitur to me. For every terrible Pro Day of a player who turned out to be good (Vontaze Burfict comes to mind) or great Pro Day of a player who turned out a bust, there are hundreds of Pro Days which more closely match the talent and/or success of the player.
Basically it means the Pro Day may not be the end all be all of Teddy Bridgwater's talent, but it does mean something and it could very well drop his stock in many team's eyes. One in particular being the Raiders who have a lot riding on their pick at number five and were standing a few feet from Bridgewater as he threw wobbly and incomplete passes on his own field to his own receivers.