NFL Draft 2011: 5 Players Who Could Move Up With Strong Pro Days
The 2011 NFL draft is scheduled for April 28-30. Meanwhile, a new collective bargaining agreement is still being negotiated by the players and the owners.
So...this is awkward.
Meanwhile, the pre-draft process is moving forward. Prospects are currently working out and attending their schools' pro days, where scouts are proceeding as usual.
Many players have impressed at their pro days already, but several more are still lurking with a chance to improve their hypothetical draft stock.
Here are five prospects who have a chance to move up draft boards with a good workout on their pro days.
Anthony Castonzo, T, Boston College on March 23
Already the top-rated tackle on many draft boards, the 6'7", 295-pounder could move into the top 10 overall with a strong workout.
No team can ever honestly say, "Yeah, I think we're set on the offensive line." Injuries and general wear and tear are so rampant in the trenches that some smart team might jump on Castonzo a little earlier because of his durability.
Quan Sturdivant, ILB, North Carolina on March 31
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Not currently projected in the first round, Sturdivant stands to climb significantly on UNC's pro day. The 6'2", 240-pound inside backer is ranked either first or second at the position, even after struggling in the 2010 season.
Slowed by hamstring issues, Sturdivant was limited to just seven games in his senior season and is underrated because of that fact.
He does not possess the athleticism that some prospects at his position might, but NFL scouts know that he is steady, experienced and productive, which will warrant a pick sometime in the second or third round, if not earlier.
Rahim Moore, FS, UCLA on March 29
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The UCLA Bruin took scouts on a roller-coaster ride through his college career.
He looked like a future top 10 pick after his sophomore year, when he led the country with 10 interceptions. He looked like a future bust just a year later when he only caught three.
A lot of his qualities are not NFL-ready, such as his strength and tackling, but Moore has great potential to be the prototypical "center fielder" at free safety with his athleticism and size.
Scouts often fall in love with a player's non-football qualities, like a 40 time or reps on the bench. Moore is one of the guys that the scouts would tend to fall in love with, so look for his athleticism to win over NFL talent evaluators on UCLA's pro day.
Aaron Williams, CB, Texas on March 29
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Williams is wanted for his size and aggressiveness, though his footwork and cover technique need polish.
He's the next in a line of strong reputations as a corner at Texas, with players like Cedric Griffin and Aaron Ross before him.
He is not fully developed, but the prospect of his development into a shutdown corner should be too good to pass up for a team needing help in its secondary.
Williams can move into the upper-middle of the first round with some good pro day numbers as he showcases his quickness and pass defending on March 29.
Dwayne Harris, WR, East Carolina on March 23
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The 6'0", 205-pound Conference USA Most Valuable Player sunk on draft boards after a poor Senior Bowl of dropping passes and lackluster explosion.
His stock remains low, but his ability to line up at different positions is increasingly valuable in the NFL's new age of offenses. The consensus on Harris is that he lacks the breakaway speed of many NFL deep threats but that he has a penchant for making tacklers miss and keeping his legs moving through contact.
His willingness to go over the middle to make catches could make him a valuable possession receiver in the mold of Davone Bess or Wes Welker.
His athletic numbers, like his 4.58 40, have a lot of room to improve, so he could make a big splash in the draft pool by moving up.