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Troubled and Talented Colt Lyerla Among Packers Tryout Players

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Troubled and Talented Colt Lyerla Among Packers Tryout Players

Beat reporters got a copy of the Green Bay Packers rookie minicamp roster, including players taking part on a tryout basis, and among the most interesting names is former Oregon tight end Colt Lyerla.

Shared by Rob Demovsky of ESPN.com:

Lyerla is a talented yet troubled prospect that must get his life on track if he's going to have a chance to play professional football.

At the NFL Combine, Lyerla was among the leaders at the tight end position in the 40-yard dash, clocking in at 4.61 seconds. He also had the top vertical jump of 39 inches and tied for the top broad jump with 128 inches, a display of his explosiveness.

In three years at Oregon, Lyerla 34 catches for 565 yards and 11 touchdowns, playing both tight end and H-back, also getting the occasional carry.

Midway through last season, Lyerla was dismissed from the Oregon program, and it didn't take him long to find trouble thereafter. In late October, Lyerla was arrested for cocaine possession.

Lyerla led a troubled childhood, and at one point in Oregon went on a rant on Twitter that the Sandy Hook school shooting in Connecticut was a government conspiracy.

On one hand, Lyerla has an incredibly high ceiling, and on the other, the presents a very high amount of risk.

As a tryout player, the Packers are certainly not obligated to sign him, but will probably make a decision whether or not to do so by Saturday.

Last season, the Packers appeared to provide a stable environment for defensive lineman Johnny Jolly, who was suspended and eventually reinstated by the NFL after three years for his own drug use and multiple arrests.

Photo: Former Oregon tight end Colt Lyerla at the NFL Combine by Brian Carriveau.

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Fan friendly comments only: off Comments (80) This filter will hide comments which have ratio of 5 to 1 down-vote to up-vote.

JimTaylor31's picture

He scares me. Great talent and totally unpredictable. A mess. Sure hope he's got his head straight for his own sake.

RC Packer Fan's picture

definitely an interesting person they brought in.

The way I'm looking at it. Its risk free bringing him in on a tryout.

And if he is good, they could sign him to a very low risk contract to see if he makes it through training camp.
Kind of take 1 step at a time.

Honestly though, Green Bay is probably one of the few places that could help Colt succeed.
First things first. He has to make it through the tryouts first.

DrealynWilliams's picture

Quarless/Bostick/Stoneburner/Rodgers/Taylor

I can see Lyerla replacing 2 of the 5 if the decision is strictly football.

Tryouts are requested by player or organization?

5 WRs & 4 TEs???

Evan's picture

IF Lyerla were to get signed and IF he were to make the team, he'd have to be a special teams monster and supplant Taylor, in my opinion.

This is how I see the WR/TE breakdown (not counting the try out/UDFA longshots).

Locks: Cobb, Nelson, Boykin, Adams, Quarless, Rodgers

Bubble: Abbrederis, Janis, Dorsey, Harper, White, Bostick, Stoneburner, Taylor

I could easily see 6 WRs and 3 TEs.

(Or, hell, 6 WRs and 4 TEs. Though with 5 likely RBs that might be hard to fit. I wonder how 15 WR/TE/RB would compare to past seasons.)

EDIT: They kept 6 WRs, 5 RBs and 4 TEs in 2012.

DrealynWilliams's picture

I can see 3 TEs as well,but I wouldn't be mad at 4.

3: Quarless/Bostick/Rodgers
4: Quarless/Bostick/Rodgers/Lyerla

I don't think Bostick is on the bubble. I damn sure wouldn't feel comfortable with ANY of those TEs as the immediate backup to Quarless if Bostick was cut.

Evan's picture

I really don't see what Bostick has done thus far for him to be a lock. I like him and think he will make the team, but I think he's very much on the bubble right now.

DrealynWilliams's picture

True,but I think the potential is there. He's just now getting meaningful snaps though. This is his put it all together and prove it year. The same goes for Quarless.

Stroh's picture

Bostic has done a lot more than Lyerla has. I think Bostic is close to a lock but he's not there yet. Lyerla is a very talented athlete w/ next to no college production. He would very much be a developmental prospect, albeit one w/ a very high ceiling. His skills are not at all refined and he might be as much as 2-3 years from being ready. He's even less mature than Finley was and much less unpolished, but his potential is similar to Finley's. However he is also a huge risk from the legal/mental/drug side of the equation.

If they Packers were to sign Lyerla, they would have to be in it for the long haul and have a very specific plan on how to keep him on the straight and narrow. Otherwise, I don't see that he is worth taking that risk. Just taking him on the roster and hoping for the best isn't really the Packers style.

BTW Bostic is nearly the equal of Lyerla from an athletic standpoint. He has no off field baggage and more on field production.

I'm not saying they shouldn't sign him, but its got to be a carefully planned decision and IMO should give him all the help they can to keep him straight and be in it for the long haul.

Jordan's picture

Bostic is a lock.

Stroh's picture

In your 0pinion that is... Its unlikely, but he could still fall off the roster w/ a poor training camp IMO.

DrealynWilliams's picture

Bostick isn't a lock,but he also isn't on the bubble. It might take a horrible training camp for the Pack to turn their back on him.

Remember DJ Williams? Didn't he always flash during this time of the year?

Stroh's picture

Did you even read my earlier comment? I said he was very close to a lock. It would take a disasterous training camp for him to be released.

You seem to be disagreeing w/ me for some reason, when we actually have the same opinion from what I can tell.

Nick Perry's picture

Stroh, I'm not disputing your point, just a question. What has Bostic done that makes him even the number 2 TE? We've all discussed what Colt may or maynot be and he can play special teams (12 tackles in 2011 or 12). Rodgers and Quarless aren't going anywhere. After that I'd think nobody is safe including Taylor. I'v seen Bostick make ONE catch, last year against the Eagles. Maybe I'm missing something but Bostick seems like one of those McCarthy gives his pat answer about. "We like Bostick a lot and what he brings to out football team". He said that about D.J. Williams too, right up until 5 minutes before they cut him.

Stroh's picture

He hasn't done much... Except flashes. He is all potential at this point, just like Lyerla. However he does have 2 years of development in him and this has to be the year he takes a big step forward. I think he will. I don't think he'll become a Vernon Davis or anything but he's got great athleticism and could be a playmaking TE.

If you have a young developing player w/ 2 yrs invested in him you don't toss him aside now. You have to give him another year to see if he steps up and takes the bull by the horns. Unless he falls on his face in training camp you have to bring him back to give him a shot at becoming a legit starter.

It would be a waste of 2 yrs development/investment. DJ Williams never showed a thing in an NFL game, Bostic has shown a little. And this would be the year he is going to step up if he ever will. Its just not time to cut him loose, unless like I said unless he falls on his face in training camp.

HankScorpio's picture

Regardless of how his talents slot him in, there is no way I'd keep him on the active roster this year. If he's good enough, let him keep his nose clean on the PS for a year. Where the Packers can monitor him day in and day out to see if they are convinced he has turned his life around.

tm_inter's picture

This news made my day. I'd been hoping that he showed up because I thought he'd make a good tight end for the Packers. Go for it, Colt. You owe it to yourself to make it in the NFL.

COW's picture

No need for someone who did this...

"...and at one point in Oregon went on a rant on Twitter that the Sandy Hook school shooting in Connecticut was a government conspiracy."

Hit the road, punk.

4thand1's picture

You still suck

BradHTX's picture

I disagree. Punk, yes, no question, and an incredibly stupid tweet. But he's a kid, he was probably 20 or 21 at the time -- and had a drug problem to boot. Almost everyone says idiotic things when they are young and/or high. Not signing him because of an offensive and stupid tweet a year and half ago?

He deserves a chance to straighten his life out, as does everyone. There's no better place to do that than Green Bay. He's certainly not "Packer People," but there's literally no downside to bringing him in for a tryout. Especially since we all and you in particular have been quick to point out the lack of a real talent (Rodgers aside) at TE.

Evan's picture

I'm inclined to agree with that general sentiment.

But he is just a kid, one with past drug issues. I'm willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and see if he get his shit together.

COW's picture

Love it... so it's all ok because he was only 20 and he was on drugs.

Every parent who lost a kid that day should get to throw a rock at anyone who tweeted a statement like the one he did. Being doped up is not an excuse.

Sometimes a person DOES NOT deserve a second chance.

Evan's picture

He made a stupid, idiotic, insensitive comment on twitter - it's not like he pulled the trigger.

Sure, sometimes a person does not deserve a second chance - sending a stupid tweet doesn't remotely qualify.

EDIT: You're the guy who would welcome any and all steroid users to the Packers if it helped them win.

Where you draw the line makes no sense at all.

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

Cow, I lost my son at 21, our only child. Unless others walk in my shoes, they can't understand. So in principle, I agree with you. I will say this. Making a STUPID HURTFUL STATEMENT is not quite the same as giving the shooter a second chance. This guy, in my opinion isn't backing the guy that Murdered all those kids, & changed the lives of all those family's. I certainly would want to address this upfront with him. If he's genuinely sorry for what he said, as a parent who lost a Family & a Future, I'd be willing to give him a chance. I think that can be determined easily enough. I didn't read his statement. If he's trying to exonerate the Murderer in any way, then put a Bullet in him & tell him to Get The Fuck Out Of Here.

gary's picture

Football aside. Tom god bless you and your family for your loss.

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

gary, THANK YOU!! It's just me & the wife, & everyday is YESTERDAY,
MAY 21, 1990. Thanks for your words, They Do Help.

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

There must be a "REAL FUCKIN' DIRTBALL" on this post. I actually got a dislike for Thanking someone for his words in regards to the loss of my son. I'D LIKE TO MEET YOU SOMEWHERE, YOU FUCKIN' P.O.S.

gary's picture

I lost my son in 1995 with cancer, he was 9 years old. I understand some of your pain. Live your life to the fullest and make your son proud of you every day. He would want you and your wife to be happy. God bless

Nick Perry's picture

Best to you and your family as well Gary. I'm sorry I didn't say something yesterday, I didn't see this post.

Nick Perry's picture

Like Gary I wish you and your family the best LV Tom. I can't imagine what that is like. Nothing but the best from one human being to another.

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

Nick Perry, Just saw the post. Thank You!! It's Appreciated. LVT

BradHTX's picture

Tom, I'm sorry. Thank you for telling your story. Best wishes to you and your wife.

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

BradHTX, THANK YOU!! Tomorrow is always YESTERDAY, MAY 21, 1990 THANK YOU for your thoughts. It never goes away. Next week, it'll be here again.

gary's picture

I lost my son in 1995 with cancer, he was 9 years old. I understand some of your pain. Live your life to the fullest and make your son proud of you every day. He would want you and your wife to be happy. God bless

LAS VEGAS-TOM's picture

Gary, I just saw the post. I know how Tough that must have been. I feel the same towards you, as you feel towards me. I can't come to grips with it. I honestly don't know why?? I wish I had the answers. I wish you well.

BradHTX's picture

No, Cow, not EVERYTHING is OK just because he was young and on drugs. But words and actions are different. If Lyerla had been driving while high and killed several people in an accident, that would not be OK just because he was young and high. But tweeting something stupid and offensive hardly falls into the same category.

Furthermore, while what Lyerla tweeted was definitely insensitive, it was hardly so far beyond the pale as to justify permanent shunning by the entire NFL. He expressed support for conspiracy theories that the government orchestrated the Sandy Hook shootings to sway public support for gun bans. Dumb and ridiculous. But not too different from the widely expressed conspiracy theories that the government orchestrated 9/11 to gin up public support for the war against Iraq, is it? This is the United States of America, where people ostensibly have a right to believe and express unpopular, ignorant and offensive views without being sent to the gulag for them.

And finally, to your statement that "Sometimes a person DOES NOT deserve a second chance"...

And yet, we all keep replying to you.

*smile*

Thanks folks, I'll be here all night. Don't forget to tip your server.

4thand1's picture

The post of the year, so far. clap, clap, clap.

Nick Perry's picture

EVERYBODY deserves second chance, with the exception of Rapist's, Child Molesters, and Murderers, those people, they deserve to rot in jail. I'm sure there's other but you get the idea. Yes, the kid made some very stupid, insensitive comments. He got caught with Drugs in his car, the list goes on but he's already paid a price for those actions, he's been held responsible. Several NFL players have been caught for drugs. Marshawn lynch was caught with a gun in his car, why does he need a gun in his car? Had Colt not said those things, got caught with drugs, he would have been one of the better TE's in this draft. Given the fact he wasn't drafted, offered a UDFA contract, just a "Tryout", he's already began to pay.

Obviously if the NFL invited him to the combine, they felt he deserved a shot, a second chance and judging by his combine scores, he did pretty damn well. The kid is very talented and obviously this is something the Packers organization thought about before inviting him to tryout. Personally it surprised me but he was the one guy I wanted to see at a Packers camp. I hope it's the beginning of a new life for him, he deserves a second chance.

Stroh's picture

I have no problems w/ signing him if that's what they chose to do. I just think they would be wise to have a plan in place to help keep him on the straight and narrow. Counseling, repeated random drugs tests, and finding a mentor for him. I wouldn't just bring him in and hope for the best, that would be foolish and a waste of time IMO.

He's a very talented athlete, but his skills need a lot of refining. He'll need 2 yrs before he might be ready. He's as raw than Finley was coming out, maybe more and more immature as well. Not to metion more of a risk!

Packers would need to be in it for the long haul and have a plan for him.

Nick Perry's picture

I totally agree with that and I think TT and MM would have a very specific plan in place. You're right he's very raw, needs work, and is immature as hell. BUT I think the upside or this kid could be huge. I'm just not thrilled with the Packers current TE's. I admit, I know nothing about Rodgers the Packers rookie TE, but I've heard he's a project too. I keep hearing Aaron Hernandez's name used when describing Colt's on the field play, and that's exciting. I'd just like to see the Packers keep him, give him a shot. The Packers could be the perfect place for him.

Stroh's picture

I agree that Lyerla has a lot of potential. But he is a long way from being ready to be a starting TE. Probably 2 years... Here's a comparison w/ another Packers TE, just so you know there is another very high ceiling TE on the roster.

Lyerla , 6'4 242, 4.61 40, 39 in vertical and 10'8 broad jump. Very little college production or experience for that matter.

Bostic, 6'3 243 at his pro day (listed at 250 now), 4.59 40, 36 in vertical and 10'1 broad and good times in the shuttle and cone drills. Has 2 years in the Packers system.

I would say that kinda indicates that Bostic could easily be just as good as Lyerla w/o the off field issues and hype.

cpitt's picture

The sad part is there is more to respect about Colt than you.

JimTaylor31's picture

He is a high risk guy no matter how you cut it. Now MM has to determine if he is also high reward. Then if he is high reward TT has to determine if the organization is willing to take the high risk. Anything less than a high reward though and I think they have to pass on him. You have to go into the season with guys you can count on.

4thand1's picture

Hernandez was a high risk when the Pats drafted him. He would have been a top 10 pick probably but everyone knew about his gang history. Now he's toast. This kid made some immature and dumb mistakes. Like some draftniks say, If Hannibal Lector ran a 4.3, they'd say he had an eating disorder. I'm sure the team will have him evaluated by the team therapist and check every detail of what he's done lately. Cow you're not judge jury and executioner, and you still suck.

COW's picture

But I'm allowed to have an opinion... and my opinion is that this kid is a piece of sh*t.

Jordan's picture

I suspect he has mental health issues. Only way to explain it. Nice that the Packers gave him a tryout. Hopefully I read where the Packers weren't interested.

zeke's picture

But since you've already confessed to trolling this board, it's hard to tell the real opinions from the trolling for responses. Forgive us.

Ibleedgreenmore's picture

This kid is a double threat, look at his film wow if he can just keep it together. Little risk here but tons of upside on this kid.

JimTaylor31's picture

Actually I think there is a pretty big risk with Lyerla. Just 7 months ago he walked out on his team and got busted snorting coke. The risk is that if you cut another TE to keep him and he's being counted on to contribute and he screws up during the season the team is left holding the bag. You gotta be able to go into the regular season with guys you can count on. Injuries take a big enough toll without some bonehead leaving the team or getting suspended. I'm all for giving the guy a chance but you gotta be pretty darn sure he's gonna stay clean or forget it.

Clay Zombo's picture

I say what the hell, sign him up and let him compete for a job. Good candidate for the practice squad if he don't make the 53 out of the preseason.

Im not opposed to players with shaky pasts, if a player is good he worth the risk of looking stupid for signing him should he screw up again.

L's picture

An intriguing tryout player indeed.

JimTaylor31's picture

I wonder if there has been this much discussion over a tryout player in the past? I can't remember much buzz about any of the tryout guys.

Jordan's picture

His Wiki page says he IS a GBP. Not sure how a tryout translates to being a TE for the Green Bay Packers. Odd. Maybe they signed him. Hope not. He needs some serious years of therapy and mental health counseling. I hope he does well in life, just as long as he's not a Packer.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colt_Lyerla

4thand1's picture

Like cow, you suck too.

Jordan's picture

There's that little 4th and 1 troll.

4thand1's picture

At least I don't suck like you.

Stroh's picture

FYI... That link doesn't say anything about him being a member of the GB Packers. In fact it doesn't mention the Packers at all, no mention of even a tryout.

Jordan's picture

Someone has updated/changed his wiki. When I posted the link, it said he was "currently a tightend for the Green Bay Packers". But someone has removed that from his wiki.

Nick Perry's picture

Hmmm, are you qualified to make that observation? Have you met him? Have you spoke with him? Have you observed him? Hey you're entitled to your opinion, but perhaps you should leave that to the professionals. Obviously the NFL thought enough of him to invite him to the combine. Considering the image ole Roger wants the NFL to maintain, I think those people are better qualified than you.

4thand1's picture

Funny how some people wouldn't want a potentially good player in GB. One more weapon for a troll to worry about? We'll find out in a couple of days if he'll make the 90 man rooster.

Nick Perry's picture

Exactly what I was thinking 4th and one. Sometimes I wonder if the trolls out number the Packers fans. Either that or there's a few trolls that are so obsessed with the Packers dominance over the last 20 years in the division they create 10 different names and troll the site. Pathetic!

Jordan's picture

Nick Perry,

My comments are about someone (Lyerla) that appears to have some mental health issues with his conspiracy comments about murdered first graders. Calling the parents of murdered first graders "liars" is pretty sick, imo.

Since you have come up with your own conspiracy theory that I have multiple accounts and am not a Packer fan, it makes perfects sense that you can relate to Lyerla. You might want seek the advice of a professional on that and get some help of your own.

Stroh's picture

Being invited to the combine says more about his football potential than anything else. They invite the players they feel are most likely to make NFL rosters, more than anything else, even if he has off field issues... Heck that's just another reason to invite him, so all the teams get a chance to talk to him about his issues if they so choose.

TXBadger's picture

There's no risk having Colt in for a tryout. Maybe he'll be the Packer's Vontaze Burfect. Or, maybe he'll be sent home and never be heard from again. It's up to him.

cpitt's picture

So Vick gets a second chance after torturing dogs, but this guy does coke (which tons of nfl players have done), and says a controversial statement (not saying its true or not, but one thousands of americans believe) and he's supposed to be shunned from the league. That's ridiculous. As long as he gets along with teammates and stays away from the drugs, let him play.

4thand1's picture

Totally agree. People that judge are hypocrites like they lead a perfect life.

Stroh's picture

Its a pattern of behavior and one that he hasn't shown he can break. If the Packers take a chance on Lyerla they should be in it for the long haul and have a specific plan in place to help keep him straight. Someone should give him a chance and I think someone will.

DrealynWilliams's picture

Good point(s),CPitt.

Throw Ray Rice in there as well.

Jordan's picture

It's not just about drugs. His comments about the mass murder of 1st graders were sicko comments. They were FIRST GRADERS with families for crying out loud.

He continued to run his mouth on Twitter for months. He's shown no remorse for his sicko comments. He just keeps running his mouth. He doesn't get it.

4thand1's picture

FYI, a lot of people buy into conspiracy theories. Kinda like were supposed to believe that every poster in here is a Packer fan.

4thand1's picture

Go the Packer site and watch the rookie interviews. Abbrederis and Thorton were really good. HaHa looked camera shy and looks like Eddie Murphy,lol. Abbrederis's dad was fishing when the Packers took him. I hope the give Lyerla a spot on the 90 man rooster.

JimTaylor31's picture

Lyerla is very talented but also kinda raw. He had 34 receptions in 2 seasons + 2 games last year at Oregon. His best year was 2012 where he had 25 receptions. He had a reputation of making a highlight reel play or two then disappearing for a stretch. What I'm saying is he isn't neccessarily a proven commodity and will take some time to develop. So does Ted want to take a gamble on a guy with some headcase issues who may take a couple of years to reach a point where he will be much of an impact?

4thand1's picture

Ted isn't going anywhere. Just watch his press con on Packers.com. The Packers will make a decision on Lyerla in the next few days.

4thand1's picture

Some pricks don't like anything.

Thegreatreynoldo's picture

Neither talent nor wealth can reestablish character or reputation. Deeds can do so. To my mind, what Colt did was bad, but the motivation is important. Is he just an addict, or was he a casual user who got caught, like many others. As to the rant, was he just looking for attention and was thoughtlessly cruel, or is he unable to accept authority which might translate into being unable to take coaching. It is up to the Packers to try to discern whether he has ta kernel of integrity and if he is capable of, and is on the road towards, maturing as a person.

HankScorpio's picture

Given what TT has said about how much he values what happens in the locker room, I have to believe the Packers will be very careful about putting a loose cannon in it.

MarkinMadison's picture

There are people who believe that 9/11 was a government plot. There are people who believe that Sandy Hook was a government plot. There are people who deny the Holocaust happened - it was all a Jewish plot. There are people who think that Timothy McVeigh was a hero, or was framed as part of a government plot, depending on the day. People are free to think what they want and say what they want, but I would not defend their sanity for a second. I'd rather that the Packers did not sign Lyrea unless he has demonstrated a monumental change in thinking, but sanity has not always been a requirement for NFL players.

cheesehead1's picture

Hope they give him a fair chance and go form there. We need a sure handed TE. Hoping Finely makes a complete recovery but I doubt if the Packers bring him back. WAY to many dropped passes over the years.

Stroh's picture

Its interesting that Finley's locker is still intact while Pickett and Jolly's has been reassigned. Does that mean that Finley will be back? No... But it would seem to indicate that there is still a chance, probably greater than you and most seem to think.

His drops issue are a thing of the past, time to let that die.

cheesehead1's picture

Just calling it like it is. Finley is not a consistent pass catcher and IMO never will be. Time to move on a get someone with good hands.

4thand1's picture

The real concerne I have with Finley is footsteps. After almost getting paralyzed or worse, you can't tell me he won't be looking for the hit over the middle. The drops could come back in a bigger way.

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