Arkansas quarterback Ryan Mallett has done a lot to repair his image over the past few weeks. After an appearance on Jon Gruden’s QB Camp, many were impressed with how he came off, including Pro Bowl wide receivers Brandon Marshall and Roddy White. Things were going so well that the Miami Dolphins were even considering taking Mallett with the 15th overall pick in the draft. That could change now as another story about Mallett has come to light that might further damage his stock.
Apparently Mallett called and canceled a pre-draft meeting with the Carolina Panthers after partying too much the night before. Brad Biggs at the National Football Post claims that Mallett met team officials for dinner the day he arrived in Charlotte (April 8), but meetings the next day at Bank of America Stadium were canceled after Mallett called and said he was sick. Apparently multiple sources claim Mallett was seen out partying late the night before.
Biggs goes on to say “(There) is no mistaking that Mallett called the Panthers and told them he was ill after a late night in Charlotte. Considering the scrutiny Mallett has been under, it’s surprising he would not so up no matter how under the weather he felt.”
Thanks to his admitted past drug use and an arrest for public intoxication in 2009, stories like this are a big deal. Regardless of a guy’s talent level if he isn’t an adult and can’t handle balancing his personal life and football, and doesn’t make work a priority, he’ll have no future in the NFL.
Mallett has a big arm and might be the most NFL-ready of the quarterbacks in the 2011 NFL Draft class. When it comes to on-field preparation he is miles ahead of the other candidates because he’s run a pro-style offense. That said, could a team like the Dolphins really feel comfortable selecting a guy with Mallett’s past? Considering they’d be setting loose a 22-year-old with a reputation for partying hard in South Beach, we think it’d be a horrible idea.