In the wake of the cancellation of the NFL Scouting Combine, the focus has turned to college “pro days” for scouting for the 2021 NFL Draft. Here is a breakdown of Tuesday’s Pro Days.
Yes, Alabama already had a pro day that we covered. But given the school’s powerhouse status (no to mention the direct ties Joe Judge has to Nick Saban), it makes sense to cover them again. Especially when players who had previously not participated worked out on Tuesda.
Heisman winner DeVonta Smith looked solid running routes today, flashing the same abilities that helped him win college football’s most prestigious award. He and teammate Jayen Waddle (who did not participate as he continues to rehab and recover from his ankle injury) have both long been in play for the Giants’ 11th overall pick. While seemingly less likely now due to the Kenny Golladay signing, should the Giants brass feel either are the best player on the board one of them could still end up in the Big Apple.
Word from scouts in Tuscaloosa is that Najee Harris will only do position drills today. No testing. Harris has battled thru an ankle injury since CFP semifinal vs. Notre Dame.— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) March 30, 2021
Najee Harris, arguably RB1 in this year’s draft, decided to only partake in the positional drills. He has solidified his status among the class’ elite RB talents so this comes as no surprise. His film proves what you really need to know about him.
Meanwhile, a potential Day 2 pick for the Giants appears to be in good spirits and good health.
Landon Dickerson tore his ACL in the SEC Championship Game.— SEC Network (@SECNetwork) March 30, 2021
Today, he’s doing cartwheels in the middle of Mac Jones' interview pic.twitter.com/PU6u9F5f8O
The 6-foot-6, 325-pound center was a beast last year as he earned the 2020 Rimington Award (given to college football’s best center). And while scouts and analysts alike were afraid a torn ACL in the SEC Championship Game would scare teams away, Dickerson seems plenty healthy.
Justin Fields was the main attraction today in Columbus. While the Giants won’t go for him (barring any wildly unforeseen circumstances and changes of heart), Fields has shown himself to be a capable quarterback during his time at Ohio State. A 2019 Heisman candidate with 3,273 yards, 41 touchdowns and 3 interceptions, Fields took a step back in 2020 but delivered arguably one of college football’s finest performances in the 2020 Sugar Bowl (22/28 with 385 yards, 6 touchdowns and an interception)
His pro day today was just as off-the-charts impressive. Throw in a 4.44 40-yard dash time and throws like the one below, and Fields most likely is a bona fide top 5 pick.
For the Giants, however, there are a bunch of other players at positions of need who could be in play. Wyatt Davis is considered one of the best guards in the draft and will likely be available early on Day 2. Our own Chris Pflum gave Davis a simple, yet meaningful evaluation statement in his scouting piece earlier this month:
Ohio State’s Wyatt Davis has the size, athleticism, play strength, technique, and competitive toughness to be a starting guard at the NFL level.
Meanwhile, running back Trey Sermon and defensive lineman Jonathan Cooper both turned heads with their athleticism on display today.
Official results from Ohio State pro-day:— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) March 30, 2021
RB Trey Sermon
Hand 9 3/8
Arm 33 3/8
Wing 77 1/8
40-yd 4.60/4.57 (NFL scout ⏱️)
EDGE Jonathon Cooper
Finally, we head out west for the last big pro day of the day. It is a big one, as the Giants have shown their affinity for Washington guys (see former college roommates and recent Giants signings Danny Shelton and John Ross, along with Dante Pettis).
And make no mistake, there is a ton of talented players from UW who will be hearing their name next month:
Official results from @UW_Football pro-day:— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) March 30, 2021
DT Levi Onwuzurike
Hand 10 1/8
Wing 79 1/4
40-yd 4.85/4.89 (NFL scout ⏱️)
CB Keith Taylor
Official results from @UW_Football pro-day Part III:— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) March 30, 2021
DT Josiah Bronson
Hand 9 1/4
Arm 31 1/2
Wing 76 1/4
QB Kevin Thomson
Washington defensive tackle Levi Onwuzurike left no doubt he believes he is the best defensive tackle in this draft class. Many mock drafts have Onwuzurike going late in Round 1 and he said Tuesday “I think that’s how it should be, 100 percent.”
“I think I’m the best d-tackle in the draft,” Onwuzurike said. “Best d-tackle in this draft should go in the first round.”
Edge rusher Joe Tryon is reminding people not to forget about him when the consider the best edge rushers in this draft class.
“Obviously not playing you get forgotten about,” said Tryon, who opted out of the 2020 season. “At the end of the day I know what I’m capable of and I’m not worried about what everyone else has to say.”
A full report of the results and information about the Washington players can be found here.