Friday, April 27, 2012
Morris Claiborne: I blew off Wonderlic
By Tim MacMahon
IRVING, Texas -- Dallas Cowboys first-round draft pick Morris Claiborne said he pretty much blew off the Wonderlic test at the NFL scouting combine, resulting in what has been reported as a single-digit score.
The former LSU defensive back, selected sixth overall Thursday night, told reporters that he didn't take the test seriously.
"I mean, I looked on the test and wasn't nothing on the test that came with football, so I pretty much blew the test off," Claiborne said.
The Wonderlic consists of 50 questions that must be answered in 12 minutes. Scores on the Wonderlic are kept confidential by the league. But the prospects' scores -- especially low scores -- occasionally have been leaked to the media, despite commissioner Roger Goodell warning teams of "significant discipline" if they're caught disclosing results.
Claiborne reportedly had a score of 4, the lowest reported score in a dozen years. The average score for NFL prospects is 21.
When asked Thursday if he regretted not taking the test more seriously, Claiborne said he did.
"If I knew there was going to be this much heat about it ... Yeah," Claiborne said.
Claiborne said he knew the test score would not affect his draft stock, but he admitted that he was bothered by some of the public mocking he endured after the score was reported.
"When it came out, some of the things that were said ... I'm human, so I had a problem with some of it, but I didn't let that get me down," Claiborne said. "I know what type of person I am. I know that test doesn't reflect on how I learn or what type of a person I am."
LSU defensive coordinator John Chavis made it a point to publicly defend Claiborne's football intelligence after the Wonderlic score was reported.
"I've heard what's out there about that test, but I also know the kid, who he is and what he did for us," Chavis told ESPN.com's Chris Low. "We run a very multiple scheme. You don't just line up and play in our scheme. You have to know what's going on and be able to make adjustments.
"You have to be able to think and move and do those things, and let me tell you: I've coached a lot of great players, and Mo Claiborne had no problem picking up anything in our system and doing all the things we wanted him to do."
Cowboys owner and general manager Jerry Jones said Claiborne's low Wonderlic score was "not an issue at all." He praised the cornerback's football instincts and ability to take coaching.
"We talk about the test scores, but we also talk about, 'What is his football IQ?' " coach Jason Garrett said. "He has instincts, he has vision, he has the ability to make plays at his position at an elite level."
During Claiborne's introductory news conference Friday at Valley Ranch, he was asked about the status of his left wrist. He underwent surgery after the combine to repair a ligament injury.
"Right now, I have to have the hard cast on for two more weeks, then I get my pins taken out and then a soft cast for like two weeks," Claiborne said.
Garrett said Claiborne probably will not participate in OTAs, but should be ready for training camp in July.
Information from ESPN's Ed Werder was used in this report.