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  1. #1
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    Terps' Heyward-Bey displays his skills

    Will Spencer
    Scout.com
    Guest columnist
    Posted Mar 12, 2009

    The arena floor at Cole Field house was buzzing with activity as players from The University of Maryland were warming up for their annual Pro-day. Each year, colleges and universities from throughout the country hold an event after the NFL Combine to give their players one last chance to impress the NFL scouts.

    Amidst all the stretching and jogging, a large crowd gathered with microphones, cameras and recorders around one man; wide receiver, Darrius Heyward-Bey. Heyward-Bey already blew scouts away at the NFL Combine just a few weeks ago, running a blazing 4.3 second 40 yard dash. Darrius wasn’t participating in the pro-day to try to lower his 40 time, he was trying to put the fears of scouts and front office staff to rest by performing in the wide receiver drills.

    Heyward-Bey is known to be a lightning fast playmaker who does as good of a job after the catch as any wide receiver in the draft. However, Darrius has only played football a handful of years and is a converted track star, thus keeping him from having the polished routes and sure hands than many other wide receivers in this year’s draft are known for. Many expect Heyward-Bey to be drafted at the end of the first round, which could be a costly proposition for an NFL team.

    Can an NFL team afford to spend a first round pick on a player that isn’t complete? Over the years, several players have been drafted in the first round that fit this bill, most recently, Troy Williamson, taken with the 7th pick in the 2005 NFL Draft by the Minnesota Vikings. Williamson has yet to record more than 2 touchdowns in one season, and is already playing for his second team.

    Though some compare Heyward-Bey to other wide receivers for negative reasons, Darrius compares himself for positive reasons. “I just try to take little things from different people, like Rodney White and Brandon Marshall. You know, I look at them, you know, Brandon Marshall doesn’t like to be taken down on the first contact, so I like to put that into my game. Roddy White, he makes plays down the field. And of course, Jerry Rice. You gotta play like Jerry Rice. I wouldn’t say I play like anybody. I just take bits and pieces and mold it into my own.”

    Heyward-Bey seized the opportunity to show scouts one final time that he’s the real deal. In drills conducted by scouts for the Minnesota Vikings, New York Jets, Pittsburgh Steelers and St. Louis Rams, Darrius ran every receiving route imaginable and looked solid doing it.

    It was evident that Heyward-Bey has been working hard in recent weeks, as his route running appeared smoother and natural than during the college football season. Darrius did a nice job catching the ball with his hands instead of using his body for support, something he had recently struggled with.

    The highlight of the wide receiver drills came when Heyward-Bey ran a post-corner route, and stumbled coming out of his last break. The ball appeared to be well overthrown as Darrius sprinted down the field.

    Darrius began to shout “I’ve got it, I’ve got it,” and ran under the ball, making a perfect catch in stride. It was a perfect example of just how fast Heyward-Bey is, and how that speed translates to the football field. After the drills were over, Darrius was seen spending several minutes with the Minnesota Vikings scout that conducting the drills on the field.


  2. #2
    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Terps' Heyward-Bey displays his skills

    I don't see him making it out of the top twenty at this point.

  3. #3
    RamsSB99's Avatar
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    Re: Terps' Heyward-Bey displays his skills

    I could see him being another one of those track stars thats got size and speed and it never translates to the field. Sounds like he used to be more of a body catcher instead of a hand catcher. It also sounds like he is raw in his route running. Getting good seperation and being able to catch with your hands are what makes a good reciever IMO. Thats what mad Holt great. I would not be all that excited if he was there in the second round. He sounds like a project/gamble to be taken 35th overall.

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    Re: Terps' Heyward-Bey displays his skills

    He will be gone by the 26th pick

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    Nick's Avatar
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    Re: Terps' Heyward-Bey displays his skills

    Quote Originally Posted by RamsSB99 View Post
    I could see him being another one of those track stars thats got size and speed and it never translates to the field. Sounds like he used to be more of a body catcher instead of a hand catcher. It also sounds like he is raw in his route running. Getting good seperation and being able to catch with your hands are what makes a good reciever IMO. Thats what mad Holt great. I would not be all that excited if he was there in the second round. He sounds like a project/gamble to be taken 35th overall.
    Well, again, you probably won't have to worry about being excited about it because chances are he's gone by then. I think he's locked up the #3 WR ranking at this point over Percy Harvin, and chances are he's gone in the top 20 picks but certainly in the first round. This isn't going to be a situation like last year when teams wait until the second round to take receivers.

    Here's what Gil Brandt had to say about DHB's pro day: "The headliner at Maryland’s pro day was WR Darrius Heyward-Bey (6-1 5/8, 212 pounds). He drew a bunch of receiver coaches, including Jets assistant Henry Ellard. After running the fastest 40-yard dash at the combine (4.30 seconds), he opted not to do workout drills again Wednesday. Instead, he focused his attention on the position drills and he nailed that portion of the workout. He runs extremely smoothly and is adept at catching the ball. Heyward-Bey was one of 24 players, who worked out in front of 50 scouts indoors on FieldTurf."

    He has very good size and speed for the next level. Things like route running, being sharp in your cuts, improving your jump ball skills, etc can be taught. It's hard for me to see him making it by the Jets, Bears, Bucs, Dolphins, Ravens, Colts, and Titans at this point.

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    rams 24/7 is offline Registered User
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    Re: Terps' Heyward-Bey displays his skills

    0mG!!! Saw His HighLights! How Fast Can 0ne Man Get!?!?!!

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    Re: Terps' Heyward-Bey displays his skills

    I have really begun to fall in love with Hakeem Nicks. I don't think he will be available for us in Round 2, but if he is he would be a great pick for us. He has the type of quiet leader personality (IMO) like a Marvin Harrison, and he has humongous hands and good speed. Along with good size (needed for our WCO), I would be thrilled to have him in Round 2. And like someone said, DHB won't be there, but I would pass on him anyways.

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