2017 NFL Draft: Auburn Pro Day

Gus Malzahn, Mike Tomlin, Kevin Steele

Sparks didn’t fly at this year’s Auburn pro day, but the NFL organizations were still well represented as always. Of the teams in attendance, Pittsburgh had the biggest group there headlined by general manager Kevin Colbert, head coach Mike Tomlin, linebackers coach Joey Porter and scout Mike Gorscak (the scout that heads the 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine).

Most likely the Steelers staff were eyeing potential high Day Two pick Carl Lawson. Lawson chose to stick with his impressive numbers from the combine last week as he just participated in the on-field drills. Lawson showed stiffness throughout his lower body in the change of direction bag drills receiving some disappointing looks from scouts in attendance. Lawson’s pace was never questioned, though. His non-stop motor is always going unlike his teammate Montravius Adams.

One of the Bengals coaches headed up the on-field defensive line drills and lit a fire into Adams. Adams failed to consistently run throughout the entirety of the drill resulting in more repetitions because of an unsatisfied coach. Though the effort and listening concerns Adams dealt with, he had a nice day overall. Light on his feet in bag drills and smooth in change of direction, Adams proves to why he is one of the more athletic big men in this draft class.

Dakota Sumpter // Auburn University Athletics

Defensive back Johnathan “Rudy” Ford needed a big day and clocked in with an unofficial 40-time of 4.34. A player whose stock is all over the place, Ford threw up 20 bench press reps at the combine and finished his career with the Tigers racking up 177 tackles, 8.5 for loss, nine passes broken up and two interceptions in his final two seasons.

Illinois graduate transfer TJ Neal didn’t see significant time on the field as he had hoped this season, but he had a solid day. Neal finished with a 31-inch vertical, 9’0” broad jump and 19 reps of 225 pounds on the bar. Neal was smooth in linebacker drills coached by Hall of Famer and former Auburn Tiger Kevin Greene, New York Jets, as he also finished with a better 40-time than expected with a 4.77.

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With some viewing him as a combine snub, Joshua Holsey was out to prove what he is capable of offering an NFL organization. Holsey was clean in the on-field drills and also in workouts. He finished the day with the best vertical jump at 35 inches and also had an impressive broad jump at 9’10”. Holsey ran a 4.50 and racked the bar with 15 bench reps.

Tony Stevens may have lost traction in SEC play because of inconsistent quarterback play for the Tigers, but Stevens showed that he deserves to be a possible late-round flier. Stevens, lean build with a long 6-foot-4, 212-pound frame, started his workout with a 10’6” broad jump, best of the afternoon, and a vertical measured at 34.5 inches. I clocked him with a 4.50 in both tries at the sprint. Stevens, however, was not impressive in the on-field drills dropping multiple passes from senior quarterback Jeremy Johnson. Even the ones he did catch were not clean.

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Even before injuring his shoulder this season, Marcus Davis was not as much of an impact as expected earlier in the season. Davis, with a clean bill of health, ran a 4.51 dash and was the most impressive catching the football. He awed a crowd filled with former and current players when making a one-handed snag near the sideline showing off impressive concentration and body control. Davis is listed at 5-foot-9.5 and 179 pounds.

*Times & measurements according to Auburn University Sports Information.

PLAYER POS. HEIGHT WEIGHT VERTICAL JUMP BENCH 40-BEST
Adams, M. DL 6-3 1/2 304 N/A N/A N/A 4.85
Dampeer, X. OL 6-2 5/8 308 29″ 9’0″ 30 5.16
Davis, M. WR 5-9 1/2 179 31’5″ 9’6″ N/A 4.49
Davis, T. CB 5-11 5/8 200 34″ 9’2″ 19 N/A
Ford, J. DB 5-11 1/4 200 N/A N/A N/A 4.34
Hall, G. LB 6-2 1/4 254 32″ 9’5″ 25 4.91
Holsey, J. DB 5-9 3/4 190 35″ 9’10” 15 4.45
Johnson, J. QB 6-4 1/4 232 31’5″ 9’6″ N/A 4.73
Kozan, A. OL 6-3 1/2 309 31″ 8’3″ 18 5.52
Lawrence, D. DL 6-1 7/8 294 N/A N/A 31 N/A
Lawson, C. DL 6-1 7/8 259 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Leff, R. OL 6-5 1/2 302 28″ 8’7″ 20 5.18
Neal, T. LB 6-0 236 31″ 9’0″ 19 4.77
Phillips, K. P 5-11 5/8 185 N/A N/A N/A N/A
Stevens, T. WR 6-4 212 34’5″ 10’6″ 12 4.49
Swain, M. DL 6-5 329 24″ 7’11” 27 5.22
Taylor, M. DB 6-2 1/2 195 34″ 10’3″ 13 4.53

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About Christian Page 129 Articles
Co-owner, co-host and website manager of The Draftster. Scout for Optimum Scouting.

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