FAYETTEVILLE — Former Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett endured a difficult Saturday, receiving plenty of criticism from the national media for a question-and-answer session at the NFL Combine.
There didn’t appear to be many criticisms Sunday, when Mallett took to the field in Indianapolis.
The quarterback wrapped up his stay at the 2011 NFL Combine by going through throwing drills in Lucas Oil Stadium. And, as expected, Mallett’s arm impressed.
"I can watch this dude throw the ball every day and maybe twice on Sunday because it’s just a beautiful ball," said Sterling Sharpe, a former NFL receiver, during the NFL Network’s broadcast Sunday.
Mallett only participated in throwing drills, choosing to save other tests for his on-campus pro at Arkansas on March 8. The quarterback went through an array of passes with the rest of the quarterbacks in his group, which included Washington’s Jake Locker.
Missouri quarterback Blaine Gabbert also was in Mallett’s group, but opted not to throw this week.
Most of the media buzz after the workout indicated Mallett ‘s performance was solid. One assessment — which came from Tony Pauline of SI.com and TFYDraft.com — was Mallett turned in the top throwing performances at the NFL Combine in the past 10 years.
"He makes every throw you need to make," said NFL Draft expert Mike Mayock during the NFL Network’s telecast.
The reviews are subjective, of course. Whether he impressed an NFL team matters most with the draft in less than two months. But J.R. Carroll, who one of Mallett’s representatives for the NFL Draft, said his client felt good about his work in Indianapolis.
"We were very pleased that Ryan was able to do what is a quarterback’s No. 1 job and that is throw the ball," Carroll said in a text message.
Carroll said Saturday night Mallett was looking forward to the workout portion of the process after enduring plenty of interviews, medical exams and other tests his first three days at the NFL Combine.
Mallett met with approximately 12 teams in 15-minute sessions Friday and Saturday.
Questions were expected to center around rumored drug use, a topic Mallett declined to discuss with the media during a question-and-answer session Saturday. He was criticized by many outlets for not being more forthcoming with the media.
Mallett had a chance to answer a few more questions after his workout Sunday. Speaking to the NFL Network, Mallett said NFL Combine was a great experience.
"I had a good day throwing the ball," Mallett said. "I missed a couple, but other than that I felt good. ...
"I felt really good about (interviews). I had a lot of communication with all the teams that interviewed me and got you on the board and did X’s and O’s and things like that. I felt really good about it."