Bradford says shoulder is ‘close to 85 percent’


INDIANAPOLIS — Oklahoma QB Sam Bradford spent an inordinate amount of time Saturday at the NFL Scouting Combine discussing the injury that ended his 2009 season after just three starts. He expressed confidence that his shoulder, which he said is now “close to 85 percent” eventually will be “stronger than ever.”

In what was one of the most intense media sessions of any prospect, Bradford rarely smiled and was all business. He said he worked hard in the weight room to gain 13 pounds from his playing weight (223 to 236) after receiving criticism for his slender frame last year.

Bradford answered at least four or five questions about his shoulder, and he repeated each and every time that his surgery by famed doctor James Andrews was successful and he will be fully ready to throw at his March 25 pro day.

“It’s extremely important,” Bradford said of his pro day. “It’s going to be the first time that I’ve done this stuff (for) pro scouts since they’ve seen me play against Texas and I got injured. So I think everyone is really anxious to see my arm, and how it works out.”

Aside from the shoulder questions, Bradford put an immediate stop to the common combine line of questioning for all prospects about what teams he has spoken with so far.

“I really don’t think that needs to be out there,” Bradford said.

The response was met by a stunned “wow” by a few journalists, who are accustomed to players openly discussing the teams with which they have met.

A moment of levity broke up the serious tone of the news conference, though. When asked if the No. 1 on the front of his combine jersey was indicative of his future spot in the draft, Bradford chuckled and said he’s just lucky to have a last name that’s first alphabetically among QBs at the combine.

Jason Feller

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