Morning thunderstorms caused a delay of two hours, 30 minutes and none of the afternoon starters was able to finish rounds. They will resume play Friday at 7:30 a.m. local time.
Bryant fired a 6-under 65 over the Copperhead Course at Westin Innisbrook Resort, one shot better than Stewart Cink, Jeff Maggert and Kenny Perry. Lee Janzen was also at 5-under through 15 holes and had a chance to displace Bryant as the first-round leader.
Janzen has not won since he captured the second of his two U.S. Open crowns in 1998.
Cink is appearing for the first time since losing to Tiger Woods in the finals of the Accenture Match Play Championship.
Bryant is seeking a return of the form that brought him two victories in 2005, including the Tour Championship. He has just three top-10 finishes since then.