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March is Pro Day month - Texas A&M Pro Day


For the past ten years, I've made my way to Texas A&M Pro Day, minus the whole COVID thing in 2020. But, outside of that horrific pandemic, I've been there. Johnny Day. Cullen Gillaspia getting himself drafted with a blazing 40-yard dash. Mike in 2014. Myles in 2017. Nick Caserio running drills, throwing to the Aggies receivers and running backs, only to take a break to get on the phone to make a deal with a future Patriot, as he moved bags and cones around for the linebackers on the next drill.

Pro Day is always fun for me, especially because I love to see the future prospects. Which teams are bending the ear of a prospect walking onto the field for the workout? What drills are the prospects doing or not doing? What prospect surprises, like Gillaspia? How much money has A&M sunk into new facilities? Man, let me tell you this right now, the facilities are incredible. New indoor facility. There's a new building attached to the indoor facility that is just so ridiculously large that it took away all the parking in front of the new indoor facility. It's going to be enormous.

Anyhow, the Aggies have a number of prospects that all 32 teams laid eyes on Tuesday morning. The one that probably had the most attention was Aggie LB Edgerrin Cooper (#42 in the Harris 100). After running at the combine, and running well (4.51), he decided to do everything on the field, including running two 40s in the 4.45 - 4.50 range, confirming the speed we knew he had. He also ran a 7.00 3-cone drill and looked extremely sharp in his on field drills as well. He moves so fluidly and the Combine/Pro Day just allowed him a chance to show off, in some sense because he can FLY.

I was standing up on the catwalk near Weapon X Ainias Smith's people. Family. Trainers. You name it, they were there. They were ALL part of his crew for sure and they could be heard the whole time. I've always said that I'm a huge fan of Smith but knew that he's quicker than he's fast. He ran in the 4.53-4.55 range, which isn't horrible, isn't tremendous. But, then he had a 6.81 3-cone and sub 4 second short shuttle. The way he changed directions, my goodness.

However, I thought he was even more impressive in his position drills. He was even quicker in the RB drills than he was in testing and then he did the WR routes as well. I've rarely seen that at a Pro Day, but, uh, "encouraged" shall we say by his team upstairs, he just hopped into the RB drills after running deep over routes at the receiver spot. It was clear he was tiring but if all you saw was the rep, you'd never know because he was the Energizer bunny just going and going and going…He is such an outgoing, gregarious and emotive young man; I'll follow his career wherever it leads.

Similar to Gillaspia back in 2019, the 12th Man safety/ST Sam Mathews didn't steal the show, but he had me thinking, whoa, he could legitimately find his way to an NFL camp in May. Back in 2019, Gillaspia's 40-yard dash time generated a ton of interest and he was eventually drafted by the Texans. In true 12th Man fashion, Mathews posted a sub 4.5 40-yard dash and a sub 7 second 3-cone drill. At 6-3, 210 lb, with that speed, he's interesting and intriguing. Furthermore, when he started and played the entire Texas Bowl, I thought he played as well or better than the Aggies starters at the safety position. His Pro Day could get him much more attention from NFL teams, even if it just forces NFL teams to ask more questions or meet with him.

I've always been a big fan of OG Layden Robinson and after he ran a 4.98 40-yard dash, I might be an even bigger fan. What I saw in 2021 told me that he had NFL starter written all over him and talking to people I trust around the program, they believe he can be a better NFL player than he was an Aggie in his final two seasons. He was flying in his 40-yard dash and his position workout was excellent. He was moving so fluidly for any sized player, much less one that's 300+ lb.

Aggie LB Chris Russell, who had some fine moments in his career, ran in the 4.4 range and looked really good in his position drills. I'll be honest, I didn't see that coming. That'll force me to go back and study whether he can be a priority undrafted free agent and get into a camp this July.

It's always a great time in College Station and there could be one of those Aggies that ends up in Houston. It's happened before a few times.

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