2014 Pro Days: Saunders stumbles, teammates healing at Oklahoma
Representatives from 28 NFL teams saw Sooners' top-rated prospect -- wideout Jalen Saunders -- post shockingly slow times in shuttle drills during Wednesday's Pro Day. On a more positive note, former teammates Trey Millard and Aaron Colvin appear well on their way to recovering from major knee surgery.
The Oklahoma Sooners' best chance at a prospect earning a spot among the first two rounds in the 2014 NFL draft might have evaporated the second cornerback Aaron Colvin went down with a torn ACL during the Senior Bowl.
Neither Colvin nor fullback Trey Millard (also an ACL) were able to work out Wednesday during the Sooners' Pro Day as each is still recovering from knee surgeries. With playmaking mighty mite Jalen Saunders also largely electing to stand on his Combine numbers, Wednesday's workout wasn't nearly as scintillating as most in Norman during the Bob Stoops era. Saunders, a 5-09, 172 pound wideout with terrific playing speed, proved shockingly slow during shuttle drills, raising questions about how much Oklahoma's spread attack exaggerated his overall athleticism.
That didn't keep representatives from 28 teams from attending the Pro Day, according to the Sooners' official athletic website. The only teams not represented were the Carolina Panthers, Chicago Bears, St. Louis Rams and Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Other than positional drills, the only thing that Saunders did Wednesday was run shuttles and 3-cone drill, which he was unable to run at the Combine due to a muscle strain.
Saunders, whose game is built on quickness and acceleration, was clocked at 4.42 seconds in the 20-yard shuttle, a surprisingly slow time that would have ranked 37th among the 39 wideouts who ran this event in Indianapolis. Similarly slow times came in the long shuttle (11.56) and 3-cone (7.29), results which also would have ranked among the slowest at the Combine among wide receivers.
Only two receivers who participated in the 3-cone at the Combine recorded slower times than Saunders on Wednesday, in fact. Those two receivers were the 6-foot-5, 240 pound Kelvin Benjamin (Florida State) and the 6-foot-6, 225 pound Brandon Coleman (Rutgers).
On a more positive note, Millard and Colvin's recoveries appear to be coming along well.
“I’m running pretty confidently,” Millard told SoonerSports.com. “The next step is kind of changing direction. Right now, I’m just running straight, but I’m doing well with it. It’s encouraging. There’s still a lot of interest (from NFL teams). Unfortunately, I’m not able to really do anything here, but there’s quite a bit of film from over the years, so hopefully that speaks for itself."
Colvin's recovery sounds even more extraordinary.
“I’m feeling great,” Colvin said Wednesday. “I’m ahead of schedule. I’m in the pool doing things - running, doing a bunch of different exercises. I’m scheduled to run April 20 or April 23. Everything’s going great; they’re taking good care of me. I’m doing squats, I’m doing leg presses so it’s going good.”
One player who may have caught the attention of NFL scouts with his workout, however, was wideout Jaz Reynolds, who was clocked at 4.56 seconds in the 40-yard dash and showed impressive overall explosiveness during the leaping drills, recording a 35" vertical and a 10-5" broad jump.
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