After the team used a third-round pick to acquire the former Ohio State star in the 2011 supplemental draft, Pryor missed most of training camp last summer before serving a five-game, league-imposed suspension for breaking NCAA rules while at school.
He failed to register a statistic during the 2011 season and contemplated leaving the game.
He decided to stick around and his immediate job in Oakland is proving he's worth a roster spot. With starter Carson Palmer and veteran Matt Leinart in the mix, that might be tough to accomplish, but he's shooting for more than making the team:
"Carson is the starter and he's going to be the starter. But I don't put myself as I'm going to be backup," Pryor told Bay Area News Group during organized team activities this week. "I mean, I don't sit around saying, 'I want to be a backup, that's what I want to be.' That's not how I operate. That's not how I want to be. I'm going to work to play. And Carson's always played well and always will. Whenever the opportunity comes for me to play, I'll play. But I'm not planning to be a backup. Get that correct."
Pryor has freakish size and athletic gifts; he'll be given a long look this preseason. It would have been unfair to expect production last year: Missing camp and five regular-season games, only to find Palmer in the starting role. Then the coach gets fired. Total chaos.
Looking down the road, the battle between Leinart and Pryor for the No. 2 job in Oakland looms as an intriguing fight.