The next Big Kat? Bryant from UCF now with Cowboys working with Lett, Durde, Quinn

A continual trek through the Dallas Cowboys’ undrafted free agent class brings up an intriguing name, but is there an intriguing game to go with it? UCF running back Big Cat Bryant began his career at Auburn after earning 4-star honors out of high school. He was selected to compete in the Under Armor High School All-American game and his career at Auburn was highlighted by earning second-team All-SEC honors and being selected as team captain in 2020.

His then-head coach, Gus Malzahn, left Auburn to become the head coach of UCF, with Bryant following him on a postgraduate transfer. Bryant started all 13 games for the Golden Knights and earned first-team All-AAC honors from league coaches Phil Steele. He led the team with six sacks and 13 tackles for loss. The trade to UCF seemed to work in Bryant’s favor, though he didn’t hear his name during draft weekend.

Was that the mistake of the other 31 NFL teams? A look at the film to see what the Cowboys have invested in.

Measurables and Statistics

Indicated height: 6 foot 5

Listed Weight: 245 pounds

Jersey number: one

Statistics (2021): 28 solo tackles, 50 total tackles

Impact works (2021): 13 tackles for loss, 6 sacks, 3 pass deflections

Film studio information:

Games watched: Alabama (2019), Memphis (2021), Cincinnati (2021), Boise State (2021)

The best game: Memphis (2021)

worst game: Alabama (2019)

Evaluation of physical abilities:

https://ras.football/author/relativeathleticscores/

First step: It lacks the ideal burst from the snap, it takes a while to get to full speed, and when it does; it won’t surprise you.

Bend: Bend is definitely not his strong point, as he lacks a prominent ankle flex. It appears to be quite compact and clumsy when moving. I question his athleticism in general.

Lateral Mobility: Seems to be a bit of a laborious engine. It takes a while to change direction in a sudden movement.

Athletic ability: It lacks a true burst or curve, and has trouble changing direction. He is not a good athlete.

Versatility: She saw him run standing up and with his hand on the ground. He does the best he can when he’s on his feet and can develop his attack instead of attacking his hips. He has shown the ability to drop into coverage and be responsible for the shallows.

Performance evaluation:

Hand use: He lacks a wide range of pass-pressing moves, saw him use the crosscut, but not much more than that. He developed a few more fast passing moves in 2021, and started combining moves as well.

Fast pass plan: Raise your hand to deflect the pass if it doesn’t come home on your run (which seems to be quite often). He has a spin counter, but he doesn’t use it for a purpose. He doesn’t set up the offensive lineman over the course of the game with a wide range of moves.

Motricity/Effort/Physicality: Generally a high-motor player, he had moments of chasing ball carriers down the sideline.

Execute Defense/Anchor: It lacks the ability to change direction quickly. He seems worked on his movement. He has moments where he is heavy-handed and able to anchor, but usually nothing comes of him being anchored. He can’t disengage from his blocker and the ball carrier ends up overtaking him. He is often misled by the wrong address. He often fails to set the edge and force the ball carrier back inside.

Play Strength: He has moments where he shows heavy hands, but he doesn’t show it at all on a consistent basis. When he hits up and with power, he can generally gain leverage.

Strengths:

To be honest, this list is not going to be very long as Bryant has a long way to go in terms of development. The good news is that he progressed throughout his playing career. We saw him add quick passing moves to his arsenal. We saw him develop better playing strength, although he was inconsistent. He showed the ability to run in a variety of ways and even showed the ability to get into cover and cover shallow areas.

Weaknesses:

Bryant on tape appears to be quite unathletic. His movements are laborious and he can’t stop and change direction on a dime. He doesn’t hook his hips when he breaks the ball and lacks a real burst because of that. He doesn’t have the ankle flex needed to bend the rim, and he still has a fairly limited rushing arsenal. His playing strength is inconsistent, though there were flashes. He lacks a real plan of attack and doesn’t use his counters for a purpose.

Fit with jeans:

Bryant is likely to be a player fighting for a spot on the Cowboys’ practice squad. Dallas doesn’t have much room for a development product on its list, but stranger things have happened.

Ahead of him sits DeMarcus Lawrence and an iteration of Dante Fowler, Dorance Armstrong and second-round rookie Sam “De” Williams. Last year’s third-round pick Chauncey Golston is available, as is 2021 free-agent signing Tarell Basahm. With six in the fold, perhaps everyone else is working towards a practice team role in 2022.

Bryant has moments of displaying everything one would look for in an edge runner, minus the curveball, but he shows up infrequently. He will need time to develop a deeper pressure toolbox and hopefully become a better athlete. He needs massive development in the running game, as well as using his strength more consistently.

Leaflet Grade:

First Step (15)

7

Lateral Mobility (10)

6

curve (10)

3

Run Defense/Anchor (10)

6.1

Use of the hand (10)

6.35

Athletic ability (10)

4

Quick pass plan (10)

4

Strength (10)

6

Motricity/Effort/Physicality (5)

3.8

Versatility (10)

7.1

Final note: 53.35, UDFA

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