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Lyerla makes pitch to get back in NFL

It’s hard to call tight end Colt Lyerla a former NFL player because he never really made it to the NFL. He nevertheless wants back in. Or simply in.

ESPN’s Adam Schefter tweeted on Sunday morning the link to a recent item from Tyson Alger of the Oregonian regarding Lyerla’s recent pitch to the NFL via videos posted on Twitter as part of a series he calls “The Resurrection.”

“To the NFL teams out there, obviously there’s been a lot of bad decisions made in the past,” Lyerla says in the video, which also includes clips from a recent workout in which he runs various pass routes. “But like I said the past is the past and it’s going to stay in the past.”

The Packers signed Lyerla as an undrafted free agent last year. He was waived-injured after suffering a knee injury and then reached an injury settlement, which paid him through Week Eight. Lyerla thereafter was arrested for DUI, which became his latest off-field incident in a string that included an arrest for cocaine possession, suggesting that the Sandy Hook shooting was a governmental conspiracy, assault charges that later were dropped, skipping classes and practices in high school, ultimately quitting the team at Oregon.

Lyerla explains in the video that the DUI charge from last September was “officially dismissed,” but he admits that he has been in the NFL’s substance-abuse program for a year and a half and hasn’t failed a drug test. (It’s not known precisely how long he has been in the NFL’s substance-abuse program; if he’s truly been in for 18 months, he would have entered the program in October 2013, seven months before he was undrafted.)

As to the injury that ended his time with the Packers -- a torn PCL and MCL in his knee -- Lyerla says he opted against surgery, allowing it to instead heal on it’s own. It apparently has; remember J.J. Watt’s recent 61-inch box jump? Lyerla did 62 inches.

One of several talented players who weren’t drafted last year due to off-field issues, it could be even harder for Lyerla this time around, given that the NFL has shifted its attitude toward players with problems away from the field (i.e., you’ve got to be extremely talented and not just really talented to qualify for an exception) and that he’s competing with a fresh crop of players emerging from the college ranks.