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February 22, 2008

Brennan looking to make another comeback

MORE: Rivals.com coverage from the NFL Scouting Combine

Comebacks are nothing new for Hawaii quarterback Colt Brennan.

In Hawaii's Dec. 1 game against Washington, the Warriors found themselves down 21-0 in the first quarter. But Brennan engineered a second-half comeback to lead Hawaii to a 35-28 victory that cemented a BCS berth.

Now, as Brennan prepares for his NFL Scouting Combine workout in the RCA Dome, he once again finds himself having to come from behind.


Name: Colt Brennan
Position: Quarterback
Height: 6 feet 2
Weight: 200 pounds
College: Hawaii
High school: Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.)
Agents: Rep 1 Sports
Fact: This record-setting passer came struggled with illness at the Senior Bowl. He left Mobile with major questions, and has yet to shed the "system quarterback" label.
"All of the criticism that I've gotten the last couple of weeks, especially since the bowl game, has kind of put me at ease," Brennan said. "My whole life it seems like everybody has said I'm not going to be able to do it. When I went to Mater Dei High School (in Santa Ana, Calif.), they told me I was too small as a freshman and I wouldn't be able to start. I ended up starting as a senior and we went to the CIF semifinals. I tried to get into a college, I couldn't find one, so I went to a prep school.

"From there I walked-on at Colorado, transferred to a JC and then walked-on at Hawaii. I never could get a break and everybody kept saying 'too small' or 'not big enough.' To hear the criticism now almost puts me at ease that I'm going to have great success in the next league. I'm just excited to get to a team to prove that I could do it."

The big question about Brennan after last month's Senior Bowl was his weight. Brennan was sick with the flu the week before the game, and weighed in at 185 pounds. You literally could hear the surprise as his weight was announced to the room full of NFL coaches and scouts.

At Friday's weigh-in at the Combine, Brennan was at 207 pounds.

"I told a lot of people I wasn't joking around when I told them I got sick down there at the Senior Bowl," Brennan said. "I started putting weight back on right away, and I've probably put on a good, solid 15 pounds in the month. I still think I can get bigger."

Brennan's weight-gaining secret has been a specific supplement diet laid out by his agent and personal trainer that consists of three meals and three snacks a day.

"If I knocked out my meals and supplements, I can eat anything I want," Brennan said. "I made a couple of runs to In-N-Out (a fast-food hamburger restaurant). I basically ate as much food as I can. I was able to work out every day and was just in a very specific environment and able to gain a lot of weight."

Brennan said he will do everything at Sunday's quarterback workout in the Dome except run a 40-yard dash. He says he hasn't had enough time to properly train. Brennan hurt his hip in Hawaii's Sugar Bowl loss to Georgia and still was slowed by the injury at the Senior Bowl, which has kept him from working on his 40 start.

Frank Coyle of draftinsiders.com said Brennan is going to need a strong showing at the Combine because he clearly hurt his stock with his Senior Bowl showing.

"Brennan's fallen like a rock," Coyle said. "He has to go in there and weigh in close to 200 and be healthy. No. 1, there are some real questions about his arm strength and delivery and such. People might cut him a little slack for being sick (at the Senior Bowl), but he's got to make up the ground now."

Three of Brennan's former Hawaii wide receivers are in Indianapolis also preparing to work out Sunday. When Ryan Grice-Mullen was asked about his former quarterback, he had nothing but confidence that Brennan will get it done at the next level.

"The guy is just a gamer and you see that every day," he said. "A guy like him might not get drafted that high, but you see guys like him always making plays in the Super Bowl and nobody knows where they came from. He's just a playmaker."

Fellow Warriors wide receiver Jason Rivers echoed Grice-Mullen's assessment.

"Colt has all the tools to make it," Rivers said. "He has the attitude and the drive. Whatever problems people say about him, they are easy fixings. The one thing you can't teach at this next level is being super-accurate and he's one of the most accurate quarterbacks coming out this year.

"He just has that 'it' factor. He's a gamer."

One concern about Brennan is how he'll fit into a team's offensive system. For instance, he took snaps in the "Shotgun" formation at Hawaii, and taking snaps from under center is something he's continuing to practice.

As Brennan prepares himself for Sunday's workout, he again has to come from behind. The question: Does he have another comeback left in him?

MORE: Rivals.com coverage from the NFL Scouting Combine

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