from Gil Brandt:
Scouts from five NFL teams, as well as a coach from one — Philadelphia Eagles wide receivers coach Bob Bicknell — watched 18 players work out at Ole Miss’ pro day Monday. The workouts took place indoors and on field turf.
Donte Moncrief, who participated at the NFL Scouting combine, was among the 18 players who worked out, but three others looked like they were good enough to bring to camp as free agents.
Donte Moncrief, WR: Moncrief was weighed and measured (6-foot-2 3/8, 219 pounds) and did position drills only. Scouts said that he looked very, very impressive.
Jeff Scott, RB: Scott measured in at 5-6, 165 pounds, and posted times of 4.49 and 4.47 in the 40-yard dash. He’ll probably be a free agent.
Michael Marry, LB: Marry (6-2 1/4, 256 pounds) ran a 4.96 in the 40. He also posted a vertical jump of 30 inches and a broad jump of 9 feet, 4 inches. He’ll be a free agent only.
Charles Sawyer, CB: Sawyer (5-10 7/8, 186 pounds) ran a 4.56 in the 40 and posted a vertical jump of 37 inches and a broad jump of 9 feet, 2 inches.
Pittsburgh defensive tackle Aaron Donald was not in a racing mood on Monday.
Donald, a 287-pound three-technique and NFLDraftScout.com's 22nd-ranked player overall, allowed his 4.68 40-yard dash time at the NFL Scouting Combine to stand while going through position drills at Pitt's pro day, held at the Panthers' indoor facility.
Bill O'Brien of the Houston Texans made Pitt his first pro day stop as an NFL head coach. Four quarterbacks coaches and Philadelphia Eagles head coach Chip Kelly were also in attendance according to Pitt's Sports Information Department.
Donald's height (6-foot 5/8-inch) is the only legitimate nick on his evaluation. He plays with power, suddenness and violent, jolting hand strength to shed blocks. With the momentum gained at the NFL Scouting Combine and as a dominant, award-winning defender last season, Donald could come off the board in top 15.
Quarterback Tom Savage, who could be a late-round riser, went through a scripted workout of 100 passes. Savage (6-4, 228), has the arm strength to be at least a quality backup.
A two-time transfer, Savage said he patiently explains to scouts that his travels should not be a red flag. But his limited experience against FBS defenses do complicate Savage's evaluation. Savage, who also attended Rutgers and Arizona, said it doesn't have to be a negative.
"I've been in three different systems, probably four or five different offensive coordinators. I don't even know anymore I've been to so many schools," Savage said. "You kind of have to pick it up on the run. You have to learn on your own. At Pittsburgh, I had to walk on and earn my spot. I had to pick up the offense and learn it by myself. Being ineligible you can't offer to much to the team. You really have to grind in the film room and pick it up on your own, kind of like the NFL will be. There will be veterans that know the playbook. They're not going to slow down for some rookie."
Wide receiver Devin Street (6-3, 198) said Monday that some scouts timed him below 4.5 seconds in the 40 after going 4.55 at the Scouting Combine.
"A lot of teams had me at 4.46 today," he said.
The possible fourth-round pick is NFLDraftScout.com's 21st-ranked wide receiver in what is regarded as a very deep class.
After strong showings at last month’s NFL Combine, Ra’Shede Hageman and Brock Vereen had little to prove Monday at the Gophers’ annual Pro Day.
But Hageman and Vereen were both among the Gophers who turned out for an event that drew officials from 19 NFL teams at the Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex.
The Vikings had at least 15 people there, including new head coach Mike Zimmer and GM Rick Spielman. Zimmer was on the field giving instruction as the players went through their position drills. What did he say to Hageman?
“He just said I was doing well,” Hageman said. “There were some good things they saw, and obviously, ‘Keep my phone on.’”
Indeed, Hageman has a good chance of becoming first Gophers player picked in the first round since Laurence Maroney in 2006.
Of course, Hageman will have to wait two more months to find out, as the NFL Draft has been moved back to May 8-10.
“That is a very long time,” he said. “So I think I’m just going to barricade myself in my room. Just play video games and just work out.”
Vereen stays focused
Vereen and Hageman did position drills and let their numbers from the Combine speak for themselves.
At the Combine, Vereen ran the 40-yard dash in 4.47 seconds and did 25 reps at 225 pounds on the bench press – more than any other defensive back.
“I feel like I opened some eyes at the combine and I wanted to show them [during Pro Day] that it wasn’t a fluke or anything like that,” Vereen said.
Vereen is a potential mid- to late-round pick, but don’t get him going about the speculation.
“I haven’t watched ESPN in two months,” he said. “I haven’t watched NFL Network. If somebody starts a conversation about that, I tell them to stop. I’ll worry about that in May.”
He said he plans to watch the draft with his family in California, including his brother Shane Vereen, the New England Patriots running back.
“I can’t just sit and watch the TV,” Brock Vereen said. “We’ll probably go bowling or something.”
Former Gophers wide receiver Derrick Engel had surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his knee on Dec. 3, so all he could do was watch Monday.
But Engel hopes to be running full speed in April and be cleared for free agent workouts in May. How fast could Engel run the 40 if he were healthy?
“I think if I really trained for it, I’d have the potential to go sub 4.4 [seconds],” he said. “That’s kind of the goal I’ve set for myself. … Judging off Brock, I know we’re pretty close in speed and I’ve beat him in conditioning races.”
Other Gophers standouts
* One highlight of Pro Day came in the weight room, where former Gophers defensive tackle Roland Johnson did 40 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press. For comparison, Hageman did 32 at the Combine.
“Actually, I expected to get 50,” Johnson said. “The record is 49, and that was my goal.”
* Former Gophers cornerback Jeremy Baltazar ran the 40-yard dash in 4.44 seconds and did 27 reps of 225 pounds in the bench press.
* Former Gophers linebacker James Manuel ran the 40 in 4.53 seconds and posted a 37-inch vertical jump.