Pro day tracker (cont.)
Many of the pro days for today are well underway, and already there have been several players who have wowed NFL teams, none more so than Greg Childs of Arkansas.
The big receiver posted an official 40 time of 4.41 seconds, though he timed in the high 4.3s on a number of watches at the workout. That's more than a full tenth of a second better than his combine time of 4.55 seconds. Childs also improved in the vertical jump by four inches, touching 40.5 inches at his pro day.
Teammate Joe Adams was unable to improve on his performance in Indianapolis, equaling his combine time of 4.55 seconds in the 40. For Adams, considered a vertical threat with home-run-hitting speed on the field, the mark is disappointing.
Linebacker Jerry Franklin, who many thought was deserving of a combine invitation, proved to scouts he belongs in the NFL. Franklin tipped the scales at 242 pounds, posted a vertical jump of 37.5 inches and ran a 40 time in the low 4.6s. Only three linebackers at the combine ran faster or jumped higher than the marks posted by Franklin today.
Also adding his name into the mix was running back/fullback Broderick Green, who clocked in the low 4.7s at 238 pounds and posted a vertical jump of 34 inches. Green, considered a leader on the Arkansas team and a character prospect by scouts, is a real sleeper at the fullback position. The Arkansas players are presently participating in position drills.
In Atlanta, Georgia Tech receiver Stephen Hill is again drawing rave reviews.
Hill stood on his stellar combine marks, but tipped the scale at a solid 209 pounds during the Georgia Tech workout, six less than his combine weigh-in. Once again Hill was flawless during pass-catching drills, running clean routes and doing an exceptional job catching the ball. The buzz continues to build around Hill, as several NFL decision-makers, as well as directors of college scouting for teams around the league, openly stated this morning that he ranks as a first-round choice and should be off the board by pick 25.
The Hawaii workout ended a very busy pro-day schedule on Monday though no player stood out. The winner of the day was Cal-Poly cornerback Asa Jackson who improved his combine marks in the 40, turning in a time of 4.46 seconds, and the vertical jump, where he touched 37.5 inches.
Defensive tackle Vaughn Meatoga stood on his combine numbers while Hawaii's other front line defender, Kaniela Tuipulotu, hurt a hamstring on his first forty attempt and did not continue with the workout. Of note was Corey Paredes, one of the teams best linebackers, running through a battery of fullback drills for scouts.
Two players performed well at the Indiana pro-day starting with offensive lineman Andrew McDonald. The versatile blocker measured almost 6-feet-6 and tipped the scale at 317 pounds. His 40 time clocked under 5.2 seconds. His vertical jump was 28.5 inches and McDonald looked good in position drills. He's getting consideration at both guard and tackle from teams.
Linebacker Jeff Thomas completed 20 reps on the bench and ran 4.75-seconds in the 40. Thomas, who measured 5-feet, 11.5-inches and 231-pounds is an intense competitor scout project as a back-up for several linebacker positions and a special teams ace.
The news was not so good for Damarlo Belcher. The one-time highly rated receiver who was dismissed from the Indiana program during the middle part of last season performed poorly during the entire pro-day workout.
Like the Georgia pro-day, the workout at UAB was highlighted by a pair of offensive linemen:
Matt McCants, graded as a potential middle round choice, improved on a few of his combine marks today. His fastest forty clocked in the upper 5.3-second area and later in the workout McCants looked athletic in position drills.
Unheralded Terence Edge turned a few heads today. The offensive guard, who tips the scales in excess of 330-pounds, completed 27-reps on the bench, ran 5.2's in the forty and touched 31-inches in the vertical jump. Edge is unlikely to be drafted, but rather will be quickly swiped up after the seven rounds by a team wanting an athletic, wide bodied guard.
The workout is complete at Georgia and by all accounts Cordy Glenn once again impressed coaches on hand. There's a feeling in the scouting community Glenn is headed into the top half of round one, possibly to the Dallas Cowboys.
Justin Anderson was another offensive lineman that stood out. The big tackle rested on his combine numbers but looked terrific in position drills. The 330-pound blocker easily moved around the field and displayed terrific power in bad drills. Anderson has positioned himself as a late round sleeper.
Expanding on the workout of Orson Charles, the athletic tight end looked good in position drills despite very difficult conditions. He caught the ball well and battled high winds which made throwing the football impossible at times.
Cornerback Brandon Boykin has been medically cleared to workout from the leg injury he sustained at the Senior Bowl but chose only to participate in the bench press. Boykin is expected to schedule a personal pro-day prior to the draft in order to have some additional training time.
Tough conditions confronted the participants of Georgia's pro day, as players faced a cold, stiff wind for most of the workout. Early nresults has tight end Orson Charles running unofficial times in the low-to-mid 4.7-second range. Defensive lineman DeAngelo Tyson completed 30 reps on the bench, then ran a pair of 40 times that averaged under 5.0 seconds.
Monday starts off what is expected to be a busy and hectic week on the pro day schedule.
Scouts are in Athens, Georgia this morning as the Bulldogs take the field for their workout. Tight end Orson Charles and defensive lineman DeAngelo Tyson did not work out at the combine, but are expected to fully participate in today's event. Charles made a last-minute decision to enter the draft and opted not to run in Indianapolis, as he wanted the extra week to prepare for his workout. Tyson was recently cleared by doctors to participate in the full slate of physical tests.
Later this afternoon scouts will be out west in Carson, California for Hawaii's pro day. Most eyes will be on defensive lineman Kaniela Tuipulotu, who many thought deserved an invitation to the combine but was snubbed.
Sandwiched in between the two are workouts for the NFL prospects at Indiana and Alabama-Birmingham.
Twenty teams descended upon the campus of Cincinnati today to watch more than a half dozen Bearcats work out. None of the school's three participants from the combine took part in a full workout. Running back Isaiah Pead and defensive tackle Derek Wolfe participated in position drills. Wolfe, in particular, looked good in drills. He was fluid moving around the field and looked powerful during bag drills.
The team's other senior, defensive tackle John Hughes, took part in the bench press. Hughes completed 29 reps, one more than his total from Indianapolis. Hughes has been struggling with hamstring tightness and will run for scouts on March 24, as will linebacker J.K. Schaffer, the team's leading tackler who sat on the sidelines most of today with an injury.
Receiver D.J. Woods turned some heads with an exceptional showing. The 6-foot, 180-pound pass-catcher posted a 37-inch vertical jump, then ran a pair of 40s in the low 4.4-second range (4.42 fastest). During drills Woods ran crisp, detailed routes and caught the ball well. Coaches on hand asked the swift wideout to run nearly a dozen NFL routes and came away impressed with his ability.
Quarterback Zach Collaros also turned some heads. The smallish passer (Collaros struggles to measure 6-feet even) displayed solid arm strength and accurately placed his deep throws into pass-catchers' hands.
Late word from yesterday's Missouri pro day has NFL scouts buzzing about Tiger field goal kicker Grant Ressel, who consistently split the uprights from 60 yards during his workout. Ressel struggled as a senior, hitting on only 56.2 percent of his field goals, as well as just 1-of-7 from 40 yards or longer. His workout yesterday will at least get Ressel an invite to camp.
Tight end Michael Egnew, as well as receivers Jerrell Jackson and Wes Kemp, all looked good in pass-catching drills. Jackson, who ran in the upper 4.5s at the combine, will run the 40 on March 15, when Missouri has its second pro day.
Offensive linemen Austin Wuebbels and Dan Hoch both impressed. Wuebbels, a three-year starter at guard, completed 40 reps on the bench press, receiving applause from scouts.
Hoch measured 6-6½ and 320 pounds. His 40 time of 5.25 was adequate while many were impressed by his short shuttle time of 4.73, a mark which would've placed him in the top half of offensive linemen at the combine.
Tight end Michael Egnew, Missouri's top tight end prospect, is still struggling with a tight hamstring which came about during the combine. He will wait until March 15 to better his time of 4.62 seconds in the forty from the combine. Egnew did participate in the broad jump, measuring 11-feet, 4-inches, which was a five inch improvement from Indianapolis. His vertical jump of 37.5 inches today bettered his combine number by 1.5-inches.
Receiver Wes Kemp, who entered the season with late round grades yet was not invited to the combine, gave scouts a lot to think about today. The 6-foot, 3.5-inch receiver who tips the scales at more than 220-pounds completed 22 reps on the bench press then posted times as fast as 4.46-seconds in the forty.
After sizzling during the testing portion of his workout, Brandon Brooks continued to impress during a 10-minute segment of position drills. According to scouts Brooks moved well around the field, looking fluid and smooth. At one point during bag drills he knocked over a coach from the Pittsburgh Steelers after violently striking the bag with his powerful hand punch.
Brooks is slated for a second workout next Thursday, March 8, where he will solely participate in offensive line drills. The expectations from NFL decision makers at the workout is Brooks will be the first non-combine participant drafted in April.
There's no rest for the weary, as less than 48 hours after completion of the NFL combine in Indianapolis, scouts, coaches and general managers begin criss-crossing the nation to attend college pro days. Over the next four weeks, NFL hopefuls will be measured, tested, interviewed and drilled as teams ready their draft boards for April's event.
Two pro days started off the schedule today: Missouri and Miami-Ohio.
The Miami pro day is important, as offensive lineman Brandon Brooks, considered the highest rated player not invited to the combine, took the field. More than two dozen teams were on hand to watch Brooks today, and he did not disappoint.
The big offensive lineman measured 6-foot-5 and weighed 346 pounds. He completed 36 reps on the bench press, a number exceeded by just one offensive lineman at the combine. The same can be said for Brooks' 4.98 40 time, which included a 10-yard split of 1.71 seconds. Only Donald Stephenson ran faster at the combine. His vertical jump of 32 inches and broad jump of 8-feet, 9-inches were also superb. The 4.52 short shuttle time beat all marks from the offensive linemen who ran in Indianapolis.
Brooks in presently participating in offensive line drills for the position coaches and scouts on hand.
The big story for prospects not invited to the combine surrounds the alleged super-regional combine, which takes place at Ford Field in Detroit the final two days of March. Reports had as many as 100 of the top players not in Indianapolis last week receiving invitations to this smaller scouting event. Early excitement about the event, however, soon dissipated once the details were closely inspected.
Unlike the Indianapolis combine, the top players invited to Ford Field will have to pay their own travel expenses to and from Detroit, which does not sit well with many. Worse yet, players are reportedly participating in just a few of the combine tests (40-yard sprint, short shuttle, vertical jump and L-drill) and critical medical exams will not be performed at the regional combine.
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