COVERING ALL THINGS SILVER AND BLACK

Nnamdi Tutoring DHB After Hours

By Joe Kukura
|  Wednesday, Aug 4, 2010  |  Updated 10:45 AM PDT
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Nnamdi Asomugha is working with DHB.

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Why is Pro Bowl cornerback Nnamdi Asomugha spending all kinds of extra time after practice to work with a dubious and disappointing first-round Oakland Raiders draft bust like Darrius Heyward-Bey?

Because Nnamdi himself used to be a dubious and disappointing first-round Oakland Raiders draft bust. But eight years and a little hard work later, Asomugha is a three-time Pro Bowler and unquestionably the best NFL cornerback who is not currently engaged in a holdout.

So Asomugha has taken on Heyward-Bey for personal tutoring sessions at the conclusion of Raiders training camp practices each day. The Associated Press reports the sessions include "getting off the line of scrimmage, getting separation and other key details a receiver needs to master to succeed in the NFL."

DHB has been an eager student. "With him being the top DB in the league," Heyward-Bey said of Asomugha, "picking his brain is key."

Hard to believe, but Nnamdi was once considered a first-round disappointment, too. "He's not a natural player," dissed Sports Illustrated in 2003, right after the Raiders selected Asomugha, "struggling in coverage and sometimes reacting late."

Asomugha has struggled and reacted late all the way onto the NFL's All-Decade Team for the 2000s, as named by Fox Sports.

Now he's passing the knowledge onto Heyward-Bey. "We'll come aside after practice and I'll ask him what is it today. He'll be like, 'I need work on this, I need work on that'. We just go out and do it."

To be fair, both guys will make more than $15 million in 2010. Fans might expect them to put in some extra time.

But elsewhere in the NFL, some guys making more than $15 million aren't even capable of practicing.

Joe Kukura is a freelance writer who is not a natural player and struggles in coverage.

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