While Sammy shines on, Martavis Bryant gets an earful from Steelers' coach Mike Tomlin

The Clemson Sports Blog

Buffalo Bills first-round draft pick Sammy Watkins takes part in drills uring NFL football rookie camp at the team's facility in Orchard Park, N.Y., Saturday, May 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Bill Wippert)

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Buffalo Bills first-round draft pick Sammy Watkins takes part in drills uring NFL football rookie camp at the team's facility in Orchard Park, N.Y., Saturday, May 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Bill Wippert)

"He may be tall, but he still has some growing up to do."

That was one Pittsburgh Steelers blogger's assessment of former Clemson receiver Martavis Bryant after an OTA practice session last week, in which the rookie got an earful from head coach Mike Tomlin.

Bryant evoked Tomlin's wrath during a drill when he caught a pass and then slowed and lackadaisically turned upfield.

It was, emphatically, not what Tomlin wanted to see from a first-year player trying to live up to his billing.

"Finish it in 10," Tomlin growled to Bryant, according to a report by Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reporter Mark Kaboly.

Later, Tomlin took Bryant aside and told him "that's not how we do things."

"What you need to do is watch 84 and do what 84 does,” Tomlin said later, referring to Steelers receiver Antonio Brown. “You would never see 84 doing that.”

Watkins Shines In Return To OTAs: Bryant might look to former teammate Sammy Watkins for an example of the 'way things are done,' as well.

The Buffalo Bills were a bit wary that a two-day break for the NFLPA Rookie Premiere in Los Angeles might break Watkins' momentum.

But when he returned to practice, they found just the opposite to be the case. If anything, Watkins turned his performance level up another notch.

Bills Insider's Chris Brown provided these observations:

"Watkins was arguably the best player on the field during team drills as the second week of organized team activities began for the Bills in Orchard Park. Watkins made eight receptions during the practice session with a handful coming in entertaining fashion.

"His biggest play came on a deep post that appeared to be a broken play, but EJ Manuel was able to get the ball out to him for what would’ve been a 70-yard touchdown. Manuel also hit Watkins on a deep crossing pattern for 25 yards, and on the next play connected with him deep on the left sideline for a 35-yard gain.

"There were also a couple of other receptions in which Watkins reached outside his body frame to make plays demonstrating his large catch radius. The rookie receiver’s presence on the field clearly has a positive effect on EJ Manuel’s confidence."

Watkins told BuffaloBills.com that he "was very anxious" because he was afraid he'd fall behind, but that he took his playbook with him to Los Angeles and studied during his free time.

Manuel raved about his new throw-and-catch partner.

“Sammy is a great route runner,” Manuel said. "He e always gives you the true route, so as long as you’re on point with your drop and your footwork and everything like that you just throw it to a spot and

“It feels good just to know we’re on the same page,” Watkins said. “He’s working and I’m working to build that trust. I’ve just got to keep working to get better. Everyday I’m going to get faster and quicker. Learning more, I’ve got a lot of mistakes to fix, but at the same time there are a lot of positives as well.”

Jaron Brown Fighting For His Spot With Cardinals: Former Tiger receiver Jaron Brown fought his way onto the Arizona Cardinals' 53-man roster a year ago after signing with the team as a free agent.

He's back in fight-mode during OTAs as he fends off a large group of contenders for the team's fourth and fifth receiver spots.

Brown is currently listed as one of four backups to starting wideouts Michael Floyd and Larry Fitzgerald, along with Ted Ginn, Dan Buckner and Brittan Golden.

Also competing for a spot are John Brown, Kelsey Pope, Kevin Smith, Walt Powell and Corey Washington.

Meanwhile, in the Cardinals' backfield there is a three-battle for the backup running back spot behind named starter Andre Ellington.

Competing for the No. 2 job are Stephan Taylor, Jonathan Dwyer and Robert Hughes.

Follow Kerry Capps on Twitter @oandwkc

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Comments » 6

fasttiger44#293363 writes:

Same old Sammy. A hard worker that tries to get better today than he was yesterday. And sadly, the same old Martavis, fairly lazy and doesn't seem to care very much about improving on his talent. His does not have enough pure talent to get by in the NFL. If his work ethic doesn't improve, you may see him wondering around the Anderson Mall next football season.

ghostchaser writes:

C'mon. i say give Martavis some space here. Another example of media types writing stuff because they're paid by the word, then people jump on whatever guy is being written about. Tomlin is outspoken and in total control of his team and is going to make his point with any and all rookies. It's up to Martavis to take it to heart. let's just see how he takes such instruction.

TigerNE writes:

What makes this news is not that Bryant had one episode where he was called out by Tomlin. It's that is looks like a trend from the past 3 years.

Sure, he can change it in a heart beat. But he has to CHANGE it, or otherwise it will damage his NFL career.

lhaselden writes:

Bryant will make it, he will take the hard coaching, he might be lazy, but this is money and about taking care of his kids.

CstandsforCowtown writes:

No need for a negative story about Bryant. He went against Dabo's wishes and did what was best for him. Some people need to let it go. I bet he has a better season than Sammy because he plays for a better team and has a better qb. One player won't help the Bills improve anyway. Just ask Spiller.

wrmurray_65#290092 writes:

in response to CstandsforCowtown:

No need for a negative story about Bryant. He went against Dabo's wishes and did what was best for him. Some people need to let it go. I bet he has a better season than Sammy because he plays for a better team and has a better qb. One player won't help the Bills improve anyway. Just ask Spiller.

Spiller is certainly a decent player but, he is no Sammy Watkins. However, both will do well this year. I wouldn't be surprised if the Bills make the playoffs. Take care.

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