ATLANTA — Juantarius Bryant dreams of playing in the NFL. Last week, he thought he would take one step closer to making his dreams come true with a tryout with the Atlanta Falcons.
But when he arrived at the Falcons rookie minicamp, he learned the tryout wouldn’t happen because it was never real in the first place.
Bryant shared he was the victim of a “heartbreaking” hoax, saying someone pretended to be Falcons defensive coordinator Dean Pees and used a 404 area code number to invite him to try out.
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“I did not realize it was not a legit opportunity until I traveled to the facility for rookie minicamp check in on Wednesday May 12th. It’s most definitely one of the most embarrassing things that has ever happened to me and a very humbling experience. Just want to apologize for everyone and the Atlanta Falcons organization for the mix up. I honestly thought it was a legit opportunity on my end,” Bryant wrote in a statement Saturday.
Because of the pandemic, the NFL limited the number of tryout players that teams could have at their rookie minicamps and the Falcons had the maximum of five, ESPN reported.
Bryant said he doesn’t know why someone would pull something like this, but said he is ready to move on from the situation.
“At the end of the day, this will not make or break me. I will still continue to fight for my dreams because I know it’s what I really want. I’m still striving and still in the best shape of my life. When the opportunity presents itself, I will be ready,” he wrote.
That opportunity is now right around the corner for Bryant. ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported that he will have the chance to play in front of NFL scouts, including the Falcons, at a HUB Football event May 23.
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