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Old 03-13-2009, 01:10 PM   #1
El-Gonzo Jackson
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Default Pro Day Risers and Sliders

There is more at the link, but here are a couple reports.


BJ Raji/DL/Boston College: Raji stood on most of his combine numbers, only doing position drills during the Boston College pro day Thursday, yet he continued to impress NFL scouts. He looked fluid and very athletic, quickly moving around the field. Scouts now feel it may be a waste to use Raji at nose tackle or as a two-gap defender, rather they feel he has the ability to line up as a three technique lineman. In other words, NFL decision-makers think Raji has the skills to chase the quarterback and make plays on ball carriers as opposed to just clogging the line of scrimmage. Raji has moved into the draft's top six picks barring any unforeseen red flags at the last minute.

Pat White/QB/West Virginia: White told teams in attendance at his workout Thursday that he would participate in receiver drills or field punts upon request. He did none of that, rather performing brilliantly throwing the ball. White showed good speed on his passes and was very accurate all day. His passing drew praise from the scouts at the West Virginia pro day.

Brice McCain/CB/Utah: McCain was one of the few draft eligible Utah players on defense not invited to the combine yet his performance was head and shoulders above those who made the trip to Indianapolis. McCain's forty times read as fast as 4.25 seconds on some stopwatches and his short shuttle was under four seconds. He had a solid position workout and McCain moved into the draft's later rounds.

Demonte' Bolden/DT/Tennessee: Bolden was sick prior to the combine and showed up at Indy weakened and underweight. He was back to full strength for pro day Wednesday and after measuring 6-foot-3.5 and 294 pounds, Bolden ran his forty in 4.95 seconds. His other marks included 33-inch vertical jump, 9-5 broad jump and 26 reps on the bench.


Andre Smith/OT/Alabama: Smith's disastrous workout Wednesday has been well documented. He weighed a flabby 325 pounds, barely broke 5.3 in the forty, completed just 19 reps on the bench press and put up other marks which were horrendous. Workout results aside, Smith's immaturity has NFL decision-makers concerned. After his exploits at the combine when he disappeared unannounced prior to his workout, Smith did nothing to redeem himself during Alabama's pro day. Smith has lost millions as teams are no longer willing to use an early draft pick to acquire him as it would mean a big contract with lots of guaranteed money for someone they are not sure about. He's being compared to Winston Justice, the one-time talented offensive lineman from USC who lacks the mental make-up to play on the NFL level. Smith may get one more chance before the draft to work out in front of a cumulative audience of NFL personnel people. If he does not make the most of it he will drop into the second half of round one.

Paul Kruger/DE-OLB/Utah: Kruger's combine was disappointing and his pro day was not much better. He barely broke 4.8 seconds in the forty and completed 22 reps on the bench. Scouts will now debate what position to line up the 260-pound defender who is in danger of falling out of round two.
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