Fourteen Notre Dame football players went through their last meaningful paces at the Loftus Center today when the Class of 2013 conducted its NFL Pro Day. While all (most of) the national press focused on the performance of Manti Te’o, Notre Dame’s erstwhile defensive field general, John Goodman, Mike Golic Jr., Braxston Cave, Theo Riddick, Robby Toma, Tyler Eifert, Cierre Wood, Kapron Lewis-Moore, Zeke Motta, Jamoris Slaughter, Manti Te’o, Ben Turk, Jordan Cowart, and Chris Salvi all sought to put their best effort forward in front of representatives from 27 NFL teams. Wrapped in familiarity’s embrace one last time, the fourteen did not disappoint.
Jack Nolan and UND.com’s whirlwind video hits the highlights:
Eric Hansen at the South Bend Tribune provides the most comprehensive run down of ND’s Pro Day here.
While Notre Dame does not give official 40 times, Manti’s definitely improved over his disappointing NFL combine 4.82. Running a 4.69 according to ND a 4.71 according to ESPN’s Todd McShay and a 4.75 according to Mike Mayock, Te’o said afterwards that he “felt good. I’m at home now, at a place where I’m comfortable, surrounded by people I know.” Most sources, including NFL.com, didn’t see Manti’s 40 time as improving his draft stock dramatically. Still, one-tenth of a second improvement is very solid for a middle linebacker.
Other notable performances included Robby Toma, who turned in a very solid 4.5/40 and fastest times in skills drills and the three cone drill. Braxton Cave and Mike Golic, Jr. put up big numbers on the bench press with 32 and 31, respectively, while John Goodman impressed in the long jump and the vertical, clearing 34 inches. Tyler Eifert eschewed the drills he completed at the combine, but still turned in a solid performance, putting him in position to achieve his self-stated goal of being the first TE drafted. Ben Turk put up 26 reps on the bench and jumped 32 inches vertically. Ben Turk, ladies and gentlemen.
Unfortunately, neither Cierre Wood nor Zeke Motta were able to add much zip to their plodding performances in the 40 at the combine, with Motta still unable to crack 4.70.
While neither Manti nor Tyler will be in New York for the draft, all fourteen players, including the rehabbing KLM and Jamoris Slaughter, will no doubt be watching the coverage and staring at their phones, intently.
Quick Word of Thanks: Today marks my one year anniversary writing for HerLoyalSons. I want to thank Biscuit and Tex for bringing me on and making me a part of this great community. I owe Tex a special debt of gratitude for showing me how to blog. Literally. yTex has to talk me through the magic spells needed to make the 1’s and 0’s do their thing. And I want to thank you, the Loyal Reader. Without you, we’d be nothing. I appreciate your readership and your commentary. I hope that I’ve made your unofficial ND blog experience a touch more enjoyable.