By Jared Fields, Sports Editor
Representatives from a dozen NFL teams came to the Wildcats’ pro day March 11 to see prospects work out. Among the former Wildcats were running back Rashon Myles, defensive lineman Clayton Farrell, receiver Robb Spells and punter Chase Fishback.
Danieal Manning attended the pro day, but ran only the three-cone and 60-yard cone drills before going through position drills for the scouts. After attending the NFL Combine, Manning ran at Texas A&M’s pro day before working out in Abilene. He didn’t have much to gain by running here, but said he came more for his teammates.
“The whole purpose was to help them out,” Manning said. “Right now, I still have four more workouts planned before the draft.”
Manning’s presence attracted interest from many teams who otherwise might not have come to see the Wildcat players. The player who benefited most from Manning was running back Myles.
“Today I upped my stock because of Manning,” Myles said. “It gave us a chance to show our stuff.”
Myles showed his stuff with impressive measures in all categories. He made a 37-inch vertical and 10-7 broad jump and ran a 4.5 second 40-yard dash. Myles said his only disappointment was in the 40-yard dash because he ran a 4.46 at the Cactus Bowl, but did better than he wanted to do in everything else.
Myles is a relative sleeper among NFL scouts. He missed playing in the last games of the season because of injury, and is still recovering. Because of his pro day performance, he is now gaining attention.
Myles said two teams are talking about playing him as a running back, but most say he will be a fullback. Still, others call him a “tweener,” a cross between a running back and a fullback. At 6-foot-2-inches and around 220 pounds, Myles size and explosiveness make scouts question his projected position.
For Farrell the future is not as certain. He has heard he could play defensive tackle or end or on the offensive line. He said a few Canadian Football League teams have shown interest, but his priority is still to play for an NFL team.
“Even going out there and busting my butt on the practice squad would be great,” Farrell said. However, he will have to wait until after the NFL Draft to know what teams want and what his chances are of being with an NFL team.
Chase Fishback worked with a Jacksonville Jaguars special teams coach at the pro day. Fishback said his two options are with a CFL team or to attend graduate school at Texas Tech. The Ottawa team invited him to its final tryout in May, and has been invited to a try out with the Edmonton Eskimos, too.
Robb Spells is drawing attention from CFL teams as well. Like Myles and Farrell, Spells might attend a pro day at North Texas or Southern Methodist to gain more attention from scouts.
Manning is currently ranked as the 92nd overall prospect in the draft on www.scout.com. The ranking projects him to be a third round pick, but analysts have said he could go anywhere between the second and fourth rounds.
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