Thursday, April 12, 2012
Ryan Broyles: 'Hard work pays off'
By Brandon Chatmon
NORMAN, Okla. -- Running without a noticeable limp, former Oklahoma receiver Ryan Broyles looked fluid and well on the road to a full recovery from a torn ACL during his pro day on Thursday.
Broyles suffered his injury last November which kept him from fully participating in the NFL draft process as he recovers from the injury.
"It's an emotional time for me," Broyles said. "I'm glad I could come out here and show a little bit, showing teams I'll be ready for camp when the time comes. It's a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity I'm working for."
Broyles recorded a 32.5-inch vertical jump and 4.57 time in the 40-yard dash during the short session inside the Sooners' Everest Indoor Center. He also ran routes for the NFL scouts in attendance. Representatives from the Atlanta Falcons, Philadelphia Eagles, Baltimore Ravens, Buffalo Bills, Carolina Panthers, Denver Broncos, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, New York Giants, New England Patriots and Tennessee Titans were on hand.
"I'm not where I want to be but that's to be expected right now," Broyles said. "The scouts said they don't expect me to be full speed and I don't expect the same."
Broyles suffered a torn ACL against Texas A&M on Nov. 5 and had surgery two weeks later. The injury forced him to miss the running drills at the NFL combine and sit out Oklahoma's pro day on March 14. The injury generally takes eight or nine months for a full recovery but Broyles is ahead of schedule.
"It just shows hard work pays off," Broyles said. "I couldn't ask for a better scenario after a knee injury. Some guys buckle when they get hurt and want to sit back. I'm not one of those guys; I take it as a challenge. I'm going to come back stronger, faster and healthier than I've ever been."
Wednesday's workout was held for Broyles to prove he was ahead of schedule and is physically ready to help an NFL team immediately this fall. At 5 feet 10, 188 pounds and with excellent quickness, Broyles is likely to play slot receiver in the NFL. He also proved to be a playmaker on punt returns at Oklahoma.
"Today is going to solidify a lot of things. It shows I'm on pace and will be ready for minicamp," Broyles said. "I've done everything I could to this point and I'm just looking forward to draft day. It's going to be a big day for me."
The NFL draft will be held April 26-28 at Radio City Music Hall in New York.
Broyles is one of the most productive receivers in NCAA history. He holds the FBS career receptions record, finishing his Sooners career with 349 receptions for 4,586 and 45 touchdowns in 48 career games.
Brandon Chatmon covers University of Oklahoma athletics for SoonerNation.com.