Pro day updates

March 21, 2023

Pro day updates … No surprise here as there was a big crowd at today’s Iowa State pro day workout with all 32 teams represented. And again no surprise that Pittsburgh lead the way with both G.M. Omar Khan and head coach in attendance, along with defensive co-ordinator Teryl Austin and several other senior staffers. Green Bay G.M. Brian GuteKunst was also there along with contingents from Tennessee, Dallas, Jacksonville and Arizona. The leading attraction drawing the crowd to Ames was ER Will McDonald who did not run at the combine. His time today was listed as ‘somewhere’ between 4.62 and 4.65 seconds which probably puts him somewhere in the 4.7 range. That’s good, but not necessarily elite, although his short shuttle time in the 6.60 range is exceptionally quick and McDonald is known as one of those guys with terrific flexibility and bend. Its also interesting that the three teams deepest at the ISU pro day – Tennessee, Green Bay and Pittsburgh – pick 11th, 15th and 17th respectively in this year’s opening round. And given that G.M.s don’t usually travel to pro days to look at 2nd round candidates, is this maybe a hint that teams are looking at McDonald in that range. At the same time, though, there is some evidence that the Steelers’ people, who do go to just about all the pro days may have been just as interested in ISU WR Xavier Hutchinson.

Meanwhile, we already noted that the USC pro day turned into mostly a swamp because of heavy rains in the area so nobody did a whole lot. In particular, DE Tuli Tuipulotu, another player who did not run at the combine, opted not to run again today. He still reported plenty of interest from other teams as he already has pre-draft meetings planned for Baltimore and Pittsburgh, while he also reportedly talked at length with San Francisco, Tampa Bay and the NY Giants today. At Rutgers, S Christian Izien, who was not invited to the combine, but may have earned an extra look or two from pro scouts as he ran the 40 in 4.40 seconds (a 2nd report actually had him at 4.32) and posted a 41.5-inch vertical. And while he was never a star with the Knights he did have over 300 career tackles and almost 20 career pass breakups including 4 picks.