UFL says it has spot for Terrelle Pryor

Updated: June 9, 2011, 12:11 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

If Terrelle Pryor wants to play football in the United Football League, the league will have a place for him, commissioner Michael Huyghue told the Las Vegas Review Journal on Wednesday.

"We would just place him in the best situation," Huyghue told the newspaper. "For us, Terrelle Pryor can be a great opportunity. There's the question that, at 6 feet 6, is he a quarterback? Is he a wide receiver? He can get a chance in our league to see where his future is. Plus, we have coaches in this league who know how to develop quarterbacks."

Huyghue also suggested the league might be a good landing spot for receiver Plaxico Burress, who was released from prison this week, especially because of the NFL's uncertain labor situation.

"It could be a great opportunity for him to ease his way back into football," Huyghue told the newspaper. "If training camp and the regular season is delayed, he could play in our league and go right to the NFL."

A well-placed UFL source told ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter that Pryor would benefit from the coaching in the league, which includes high-profile former NFL coaches Marty Schottenheimer, Dennis Green, Jim Fassel and Jerry Glanville. The source said he believes there's "a decent shot" Pryor could wind up playing this year in the UFL.

Any player who signs with the UFL must remain in the league for the entire season before signing with an NFL team. The UFL will announce its schedule Thursday.

Pryor, a three-year starter for the Buckeyes, announced on Tuesday that he would be giving up his senior season while the NCAA investigates Ohio State players getting improper benefits, including tattoos, cash and possible deals on cars. Pryor has admitted he broke NCAA rules by accepting improper benefits from a Columbus tattoo-parlor owner.

Pryor hasn't yet applied with the NFL for the supplemental draft, attorney Larry James told ESPN's Joe Schad on Wednesday. A supplemental draft is expected to be held in July, if needed.

An Ohio State spokesman told ESPN: "We anticipate that Terrelle will be eligible for the NFL supplemental draft."

If Pryor doesn't play in the NFL or the UFL, the Canadian Football League also might be a legitimate option.

The Saskatchewan Roughriders have acquired the negotiating rights to Pryor and have spoken to Pryor's lawyer about bringing him to the CFL. James said Wednesday that the CFL is a genuine possibility for the ex-Buckeye.

"Yeah, it's like I told (the Roughriders), my house is not for sale, but at the right price it's on the market," James said.

Roughriders general manager Brendan Taman told The Associated Press on Wednesday that the team owned Pryor's CFL negotiation rights and was intrigued by the 6-foot-6, 233-pound quarterback.

"He's a heck of an athlete," Taman said. "We get a lot of U.S. college football up here. We're well aware of him. With the (bigger) field up here in Canada, with the athlete that he is, he would be an interesting component to come up here and run around and do some things as a quarterback."

Pryor also could take a year off to heal from ankle surgery he had last January and prepare for next year's NFL draft. Many experts think that might be the way to go.

"When we look at him athletically I think he's a good athlete, but I don't think he's an athlete like (former Auburn QB and Heisman Trophy winner) Cam Newton," said NFL draft analyst and former Dallas Cowboys general manager Gil Brandt.

Quarterback coach George Whitfield, who worked with Newton prior to the NFL draft, said Newton and Pryor share a number of on-field traits.

"Cam Newton and Terrelle Pryor are comparable," Whitfield told Schad. "Terrelle is a guy who is going to want to improve his mechanics and there's no evidence to suggest he can't. Cam seemed to have more confidence in his arm strength. But the tools and the ceiling for those two are comparable."

Information from ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter, ESPN college football reporter Joe Schad and The Associated Press was used in this report.

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