Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett’s NFL tour continues past its opening drive later today when he’ll begin a two-day visit with the Seattle Seahawks.
It’s a busy week for Mallett, who’s set to visit the Minnesota Vikings on Wednesday and Thursday and the Carolina Panthers on Friday and Saturday.
He visits the San Francisco 49ers on April 11, the Miami Dolphins on April 14 and the Tennessee Titans on April 17.
Mallett’s first visit was with the Cincinnati Bengals.
He has conducted private workouts for the Miami Dolphins and the Panthers.
Mallett is a big, strong-armed passer who excelled at the NFL scouting combine throwing the football as well as at his campus Pro Day workout.
The 6-foot-6, 238-pounder ran the 40-yard dash between 5.37 and 5.39 seconds at his Pro Day, slower than every quarterback at the NFL scouting combine.
“I had a bad start,” Mallett told Arkansas reporters. “I don’t really care. Everyone knows I’m not Mike Vick.”
Besides the lack of mobility, Mallett did well in the workout as he displayed his big arm.
“I liked them all,” Mallett said. “I thought it was a good workout. I was spinning it, the ball was really spinning. It was like being back in practice here.”
Among those attending that workout: Seahawks general manager John Schneider as well as Denver Broncos offensive coordinator Mike McCoy, Titans quarterbacks coach Dowell Loggains, Panthers quarterbacks coach Mike Shula and Bengals quarterbacks coach Ken Zampese.
“I wanted to be more consistent in my throwing,” Mallett said. “They had asked me to keep the tempo faster in the throwing drill and I think I did that.”
Mallett has been linked to unconfirmed allegations of drug use, but isn’t known to have ever failed a drug test.
He took issue with characterizations that he abruptly finished his media combine interview.
“I didn’t walk out,” Mallett said. “The moderator said, ‘Last question.’ I had answered one question four times. I was going to say the same thing if they asked it six times.”
Mallett was asked if he’s being unfairly portrayed.
“Oh, you get used to it,” he said. “I’ve had it before. I always look at it as I must be doing something right. It’s always been something ever since high school.”
Mallett said that he thought his meetings with NFL teams went well at the combine.
“That was great and I really got into that,” Mallett said. “It’s my favorite part. They talked to me about football and some other things. I think the football IQ part went very good. I think when I get a chance to show what defenses do and how you attack them, it’s something that goes well. I can draw it up because that’s what we have to do here.”
NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock spoke at length about Mallett during a conference call, saying he would have serious reservations about drafting him in the first round.
“I didn’t say I have a first round grade on him,” Mayock said. “I said that I’ve got four guys with first round ability. To me there is a distinction there, and people just assume when I say that I think he’s a first round guy. Here’s what Ryan Mallet is. Ryan Mallett has unbelievable, God-given ability to throw a football. And when he has clear pocket and clear vision, there is nobody in the game better. Comes from an offense where you can see him drop back under center, you can see him play action. And there are two plays in the Georgia game that to me summarize this kid, back to back throws. The first play he throws a 35-yard post against Georgia that was on the line the whole way. Thirty-five yards, on a line, he hit his receiver right in the helmet. It was an unbelievably difficult throw, and he made it look easy.
“Literally the next play on a seven-yard hitch, he made a throw where three Georgia players touched it. An under guy, a linebacker coming under, and a corner from behind. It was one of the worst decisions in throws I’ve seen on back to back throws. That is the problem with this kid. Every time I get excited he does somethin from a decision making or an accuracy perspective that bothers me. The common denominator is when he goes bad it’s because of pressure in the pocket. When he can’t step up, when he can’t see, when he doesn’t have clear vision, I believe his production goes way down. Having said all of those things, I would be very concerned about taking him in the first round.”