Defensive linemen Destiny Vaeao Darryl Paulo, linebackers Jeremiah Allison, Ivan McLennan and Kache Palacio, receivers Dom Williams and Dan Lilienthal and offensive tackle Joe Dahl all participated in workouts.
Washington State’s NFL hopefuls had their Pro Day in front of scouts from about 17 NFL teams in Pullman Thursday morning.
Defensive linemen Destiny Vaeao and Darryl Paulo, linebackers Jeremiah Allison, Ivan McLennan and Kache Palacio, receivers Dom Williams and Dan Lilienthal and offensive tackle Joe Dahl all participated in the workout.
Williams’ 40-yard dash was one of the highlights from the workout. According to his agent, Williams ran a 4.4 40 and tallied 40.5 inches in the vertical jump, 10-feet-5-inches in the broad jump and 11 repetitions on the 225-pound bench press.
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If Williams had been invited to the NFL Scouting Combine, that vertical jump score would have tied him with Baylor’s Corey Coleman as the second-best among all receivers who performed for scouts in Indianapolis in February. Oklahoma’s Sterling Shephard and TCU’s Josh Doctson were No. 1 at the Combine with 41-inch vertical jumps.
According to Williams’ agent, Adam Snyder, one scout clocked the WSU receiver at 4.39 on his first attempt in the 40 yard dash, and 4.43 in the second attempt. Scouts from Pro Days generally get together to compare and aggregate scores at the end, so officially, Williams 40 time worked out to be a 4.4.
That would have put him third among all receivers who ran the 40 at the Combine. It’s an impressive time, and one Williams needed to help boost his stock with NFL teams. Additionally, Williams’ broad jump score would have tied him with Ohio State’s Jalin Marshall at No. 11 of all receivers who worked out at the Combine.
“I just wanted to get out there and show what I could do,” Williams said.
Williams and Lilienthal also took part in some receiver drills, catching passes from one of the scouts.
Dahl said this week that he has chosen to stand by his Combine workout numbers, but he did some offensive line drills for scouts at Pro Day and was clearly the biggest draw.
For every Coug senior who participated in the workout, this was their best chance to convince NFL representatives that they are deserving of a roster spot.
Vaeao had a good showing at the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl in January. Since then, he’s been training in Orlando, Fla, but he returned to Pullman last week to get ready for Pro Day.
Vaeao has kept in close touch with WSU defensive line coach Joe Salave’a. He’s spent some time this week watching film with Salave’a, and after Pro Day, he intends to stick around in Pullman, working out at the football operations building to stay in shape, and running through position drills with his old coach until the NFL Draft.
Being back in Pullman but no longer a member of the football team is a little strange for the guys.
“It’s different not being part of the team,” said Vaeao. “But at the same time, we’ve been working so hard just to get to this point. You’re all on you’re own now, there’s no coach telling you what to do. It’s all on you, your effort and your work ethic.”
Vaeao has spent the last couple of months fine-tuning his mechanics for the 40-yard-dash and building his overall strength and power.
“I just want to show the scouts what I can do,” Vaeao said. “Just not only to showcase my skills, but show them what I’ve got. What kind of person I am. I’m a big dude, but I’m able to move and to do lateral stuff.”
The list of NFL teams at WSU’s Pro Day included: the Seattle Seahawks (Director of College Scouting Scott Fitterer), Philadelphia Eagles, Kansas City Chiefs, Indianapolis Colts, Pittsburgh Steelers, New York Jets, New York Giants, Oakland Raiders, Atlanta Falcons, Arizona Cardinals, New England Patriots, Jacksonville Jaguars, Green Bay Packers, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and San Diego Chargers.
Several CFL teams also sent representatives.