Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Pro Day postulations

Another Pro Day is in the books. A total of 30 scouts showed up, though that total includes Chris Palmer and four of his assistant coaches for the new UFL team. So it was 25 NFL scouts representing 21 teams.
  • Robert McClain had quite a showing, at least before tweaking a muscle after the 40-yard dash. But his 4.43 40 time, 38.5-inch vertical and 23 reps of 225 pounds was impressive and may have created a little buzz.

  • Lindsey Witten ran a 4.65, which is impressive considering Brad Kanuch turned in a 4.62. Of course, Kanuch wasn't planning to participate today until the Eagles called him a couple of weeks back. Kanuch told the team he hadn't been working out and was spending most of his time playing basketball and volleyball, but he did his best to get ready on short notice.

  • Witten also had a 36.5-inch vertical, while Marcus Easley went 37.5. Dahna Deleston, back looking to secure a free agent deal, was also impressive with a 4.49 40 and 40-inch vertical. Deleston is in contact with several NFL teams, but he definitely has at least one option. Chris Palmer was very interested in Deleston, and the two exchanged numbers. Deleston said the UFL will be an opportunity to put some game action on film, one of the big factors holding him back, now. "I can run this and jump that, but I can't show them what I can do in a game," Deleston said. "I don't have any (recent) film."

  • Mike Hicks has spent the last seven weeks training in Lancaster, Pa. -- the heart of Amish country. He didn't arrive in a horse and buggy, but Hicks was noticeably slimmer at 313 pounds, down about 15 since January. "I haven't weighed 313 since high school," Hicks said. Hicks said he's spoken to NFL teams, and worked out for some. Randy Edsall believes both Hicks and Dan Ryan will at the very least be invited to an NFL camp.

  • Andre Dixon did limited work today, comfortable to let his previous work stand on its own. Part of that is because Dixon is nursing an arm injury, and didn't want risk devaluing his stock. Dixon passed on all the physical tests, running drills only. "I'm a player," Dixon said. "Put me in pads and put me on the field."

  • Marcus Easley is looking more and more like he'll be a mid-to-late round pick. He's got the size, speed and hands for the NFL. Easley didn't run the 40 today, standing firm on the 4.39 he ran at the Combines. He spent a while running routes with Jets wide receivers coach Henry Ellard -- a fair NFL receiver himself once -- and finished with a couple of one-handed grabs.

  • Deleston, Aaron Bryant and Terry Baltimore were among the ex-UConn players who came back to show their stuff. Former UConn assistant Norries Wilson was also there with a player -- Newington's Austin Knowlin, a receiver for Wilson at Columbia.

  • Among the UConn alumni in the house were Terry Caulley, Darius Butler and Rob Lunn. Caulley, still a dead ringer for Carlton Banks, chatted with Chris Palmer and is looking at the UFL after spending the past three seasons playing in Canada. Butler used the time to catch up with old friends. Lunn is now dominating the blogging industry with his FWG franchise, which he's expanded to separate sites for the NFL and soon-to-be-launched Major League Baseball. Rob is also sporting a jet-black Hollywood Hogan beard, which may or may not be spray-painted.

  • Here's a list of the scouts on hand today: Rich Long (Browns), Frank Dorazio (Bucs), Tom Gibbons (Chargers), Jay Muraco (Chiefs), Jamie Moore (Colts), Anthony Hunt (Dolphins), Chris Petit (NYG), Louis Clark (Jags), Jo-Jo Wooden (Jets), Matt Bazirgan (Jets), Dave Uyrus (Lions), Lee Gissendander (Packers), Jeff Beathard (Panthers), William Thomas (Raiders), Jason Barnes (Seahawks), Will Lewis (Seahawks), Chris Palmer (UFL), Rob Quinn (Pats), Ahmed Russell (Eagles), Davonne Jones (Saints), Jim Hostler (Ravens), Henry Ellard (Jets), Dan Gregory (Panthers), Rex Hogan (Bears), Robinson Payne (Falcons), Richard Shelton (Titans), Frank Housen, Tony Sparano Jr., Oji Fogan and Shane Waldron (UFL Hartford).

  • I could have included Neill Ostrout of the CT Post on the list, as he brought his own stop watch (and yes, I wish I had thought of the same thing). The day concluded with a media grudge match spring between Joe Perez of the Norwich Bulletin (and his freshly-shaved head) and Zac Boyer of Neill revealed the 40 times and they were, well, they weren't great. But the foundation has been laid for next season's media Pro Day.


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