Cornerback visits Green Bay

UNLV's Wright boosts stock with strong workouts, but has questionable background

University of Nevada-Las Vegas cornerback Eric Wright has drawn heavy attention from at least four National Football League teams, including the Green Bay Packers. Wright traveled to Green Bay last week for a pre-draft visit, which indicates that he is a strong candidate to be selected by the Packers during the NFL draft on April 28-29.

The Packers are seeking to build depth at cornerback in the draft behind veterans Al Harris and Charles Woodson. Though Wright got into trouble while at Southern California before transferring to UNLV, those problems appear to be behind him. His performances at the recent NFL Scouting Combine and individual workouts at UNLV helped him improve his stock.

Wright ran the 40-yard dash in 4.36 seconds at the Combine in Indianapolis in February. He caught every pass within reach and fielded every punt at his pro day workout in early March before about a dozen NFL scouts, according to the Las Vegas Review-Journal.

Wright told the Review-Journal that he hopes to be selected in the second round of the draft.

"I'm definitely doing the things to show I'm one of the top corners in the nation, if not the top corner in this draft," Wright told the Review-Journal. "I'm just going to keep moving from there."

Wright met with the Packers on April 10. He also met with Packers scouts and scouts from Washington, Philadelphia and Cleveland for his second personal workout on March 23. The Kansas City Chiefs are also believed to have a strong interest in Wright.

"No drops at the combine, no drops here," Wright told the Review-Journal on March 7. "Just focusing on showing all my athletic ability. I just went out there and caught some punts. I'm a great kickoff returner looking to be a great punt returner.

"My feet, hips and hands are the main things I wanted to display out here during the workouts, and I think I did that today."

Wright played in nine games and had 29 tackles with one interception, returning it 32 yards, in 2006. He also led the Rebels, which finished 2-10, in kickoff returns with a 23.9-yard average on 18 returns.

Wright sat out three games with a left knee sprain this past season. He also tore his hamstring in 2003.

Wright transferred to UNLV after being arrested in Los Angeles following the 2004 football season on the suspicion of rape. Police reportedly found more than 100 Ecstasy pills, more commonly known as the "date rape" drug, in the apartment that he shared with a roommate. Charges were never filed after the woman failed to testify, so Wright sat out the 2005 season as required for NCAA transfer students, and then played just one season for UNLV before declaring early for the draft as a junior.

But because of his ability to return kickoffs, aside from playing cornerback, the Packers appear ready to give him a shot in the NFL. The jury is still out on Will Blackmon, selected by Green Bay in the fourth round last year. The cornerback/return specialist from Boston College battled injury problems throughout last year, leaving his status questionable for this season.


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