Micah Parsons Shows off Elite Athleticism at Penn State Pro Day Before NFL Draft

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMarch 25, 2021

Penn State linebacker Micah Parsons (11) during an NCAA college football game in State College, Pa., on Saturday, Sept. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Barry Reeger)
Barry Reeger/Associated Press

After sitting out the 2020 season, linebacker Micah Parsons took center stage in front of NFL scouts on Thursday during Penn State's pro day.

Parsons entered the day looking to solidify his standing as a potential top-10 pick. ESPN's Todd McShay has the 2019 All-American ranked as the No. 4 player in the 2021 draft class on his most recent big board: 

"He's long and is pretty good in coverage, with plenty of range. He is an above-average tackler and shows the burst to shoot gaps and be disruptive in run defense. Parsons also has the instincts and speed to blitz, tallying five sacks in 2019. Another 2020 opt-out, he will need work in getting off blocks at the next level, but consider him a day one starter in the NFL."

Per NFL Network's Kim Jones, the Los Angeles Rams were the only team that didn't have a representative on hand to watch Penn State's pro day:

Kim Jones @KimJonesSports

The 31 nfl teams at Penn State pro day (no Rams) — including Mike Tomlin & Joe Judge — have seen DE Jayson Oweh’s 11-2 broad & 39.5 vertical jump. At 257 pounds. 40s next. #ProDay @nflnetwork

The Rams weren't going to be in the mix for Parsons, even if they had sent someone to watch him. They don't have a first-round pick until 2024 as a result of trades for Jalen Ramsey and Matthew Stafford

The first thing Parsons did at his workout was run the 40-yard dash in 4.39 seconds:

PFF Draft @PFF_College

MICAH PARSONS: 4.39 LB1 https://t.co/uU4Wu9Y34e

Lake Lewis Jr @LakeLewis

Micah Parsons and Jayson Oweh ran sub 4.4 times in their Penn State pro day. That’s crazy. How do you not draft Parsons in the top five?

For perspective, at the last NFL scouting combine in 2019, LSU's Devin White was the fastest linebacker with a 4.41-second time in the 40-yard dash. He wound up being selected No. 5 overall to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and was instrumental in their run to the Super Bowl last season. 

Big Ten Network @BigTenNetwork

"That's wide receiver fast!" Here's a quick look at @MicahhParsons11's very impressive @PennStateFball Pro Day performance. 👀 https://t.co/bbXkrDh9mb

Parsons officially measured in at 6'3" and 246 pounds:

PFF Draft @PFF_College

LB1 Micah Parsons' Penn State Pro Day 🤯 https://t.co/XSJceKuPEy

Jim Nagy @JimNagy_SB

Official pro-day results @PennStateFball juniors: LB Micah Parsons HT 6031 WT 246 Hand 11 Arm 31 1/2 Wing 78 7/8 40-yd 4.39 (NFL scout ⏱️)👀 10-yd 1.59 VJ 34.0 BJ 10-6 SS 4.40 3C 6.94 BP 19 DE Jayson Oweh 6047 257 9 1/4 34 1/2👀 82 4.39 (1.59 10-yd)👀 39.5 11-2👀 4.15 6.84👀 21

Penn State On BTN @PennStateOnBTN

.@MicahhParsons11 putting up 19 reps of 225 at #PSUProDay @PennStateFball https://t.co/Cgf40nmqqr

Kim Jones @KimJonesSports

🏈 ⁦@MicahhParsons11⁩. One of the final drills today. #PennStateProDay https://t.co/ebvZb6QlUM

It's difficult to project where Parsons might land in the draft at this point. There are a lot of teams picking at the top in need of a quarterback, as well as other teams picking sixth through 10th and just outside of the top 10 that could be looking for help at that position. 

Based on talent alone, Parsons has an argument as one of the best players in the 2021 class. He's got unlimited potential as a middle linebacker with a combination of speed and athleticism that will let him disrupt plays in the passing game and stop the run. 


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