USU football Pro Day 2017 takeaways


Takeaway #1: Devante Mays is an animal

When Devante Mays transferred to Utah State from Blinn Community College two years ago, upon watching his tape I immediately said to myself “that man is going to play in the NFL.” After playing in all 13 games and rushing for 966 yards his junior year, he was the clear cut number one for the Aggies backfield entering 2016. An injury-plagued senior season led some to wonder if he would have a shot to play at the next level, but he left no doubt that he’s capable of it today. Mays had a day many running backs could only dream of, recording a 40.5” vertical jump, 10”9’ broad jump, 22 bench press reps, and a 4.47 40-yard dash. Had he been invited to the NFL Combine, those numbers would have placed him at first, third, fourth and fourth respectively among running backs. If that doesn’t catch the attention of NFL teams, I don’t know what will.

Takeaway #2: NFL scouts know where to find treasure

Though the Aggies may not have the highly-anticipated NFL prospects this season that they have had in seasons past, that didn’t deter NFL scouts from Logan. In search of the next Zach Vigil, Marwin Evans, Kerwynn Williams or D.J. Tialavea, NFL teams are hoping they can turn a late-round draft pick or an undrafted free agent contract into a contributor. Scouts from 21 of the 32 NFL teams made the trek to USU’s pro day searching for treasure. Though most mock drafts don’t have any Aggies coming off the board during the draft, there is no doubt several players will get an opportunity to sign contracts and try to earn a roster spot in camp.

Takeaway #3: Wyatt Houston may have a few tricks up his sleeves

The most beloved Aggie of the 2016 season for many fans may have been tight end Wyatt Houston. Mr. Reliable (a nickname I just barely made up for him) seemed like every time the ball was thrown in his general direction he would snag it, and every time the Aggies needed a big play he would deliver. He had a pretty nice day as well, recording a 33.5” vertical jump along with 18 bench press reps, and he navigated the three cone drill flawlessly. But in a draft class like this year’s which is so loaded at the tight end position, that may not be enough to get his name called. So in one of the biggest surprises of the day, Houston performed not just the tight end/receiver drills, he also tried out his hand at long-snapping. Though he never long-snapped during his college days he looked like a natural, and an additional skill like that may be exactly what he needs to get a chance.

Takeaway #4: Chuckie’s still got it!

Chuckie Keeton is back in Logan! Well, for the day that is. With no graduating quarterbacks this year, the Aggies made a call to the former five-year QB to help out with receiver and defensive back drills. Keeton, who is now a graduate assistant under former Aggie head coach Gary Andersen at Oregon State, was able to return to his old stomping ground and lend out his arm. It was clear that he hasn’t skipped a beat since graduating a year ago, as he heaved deep pass after deep pass with pinpoint accuracy to the likes of Kennedy Williams, Wyatt Houston, Devante Mays and the Aggie DB’s. One lob was even deflected off the rafters of the Laub Center. While I’m sure “Coach Keeton” is happy with his situation up in Corvallis, more than one scout jokingly asked about his draft eligibility.

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