Given reports of Randy Gregory’s marijuana use in college and that he missed at least three pre-draft meetings with teams, it’s not surprising that Gregory fell to the second round of the 2015 NFL draft, where the Dallas Cowboys selected him with the 60th-overall pick.
But the edge rusher does not believe that his marijuana use, in particular, is what precipitated his slide. In speaking with ESPN Radio on Friday, which was replayed by Dallas’ KESN-FM 103.3 on Monday, Gregory attributes his drop to Day 2 to an overall maturity issue, one that he is both aware of and working on.
Gregory said, via Jon Machoda of The Dallas Morning News:
I’m 22 years old but I think I carry myself real well and I think I need to carry myself a little bit better as far as decision making goes. I think a lot of people are getting tied up in the weed and think it’s just a weed problem. I don’t think it’s a weed problem. I think it’s decision making. I think I’m immature. I’m definitely working on that. I want to prove everyone wrong and I want to do it with this team. I think this is the best team I can do that with.
Gregory failed his drug test at February’s scouting combine, testing positive for marijuana. At the time, he was contrite as well as honest, detailing his two failed drug tests while playing collegiate football for Nebraska and saying that he hadn’t smoked it since December of 2014. He claimed that elevated THC levels dating back to that time spurred the positive test in February. Gregory said, “I was worse at Nebraska than I’ve ever been at any other time of my life. But I know how I am now. I think if teams really look at how I am now more so than the past, they’ll see I’m making strides to get better, as a person and as a player.”
On the radio last week, Gregory said that he’s been clean since the end of his final year at Nebraska: “I haven’t touched it. I’m feeling real good, too. This is a high in itself, to be honest. I’m high on life right now, and I don’t want to lose this high.”
In two years at Nebraska, Gregory totaled 120 combined tackles, 25.5 tackles for a loss and 17.5 sacks. His 10.5 sacks in 2013 led the Big Ten. But because of his numerous off-the-field issues and erratic behavior during the pre-draft process, many teams were wary of adding Gregory to their ranks. The Cowboys ultimately pulled the trigger, but not until late in Round 2.
Gregory is on a PR campaign to repair his image and justify the Cowboys taking a gamble on him. But he’ll have to back up his talk with actions and keep himself out of trouble. At the very least, Gregory knows what he’s been given can be taken away at any time and that fear is currently keeping him motivated. Gregory said, “One of the main things I learned is that this could be gone in a minute.”
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