The season may not have turned out the way the Wyoming football program had hoped but that didn't mean there wasn't some quality upper classmen talent on roster to be showcased to professional scouts.
On the 13th of March, Wyoming hosted twenty-two representatives from eighteen different NFL teams to test and interview nine professional hopefuls. The teams who made the trek to Laramie were Atlanta, Baltimore, Buffalo, Carolina, Chicago, Cleveland, Dallas, Denver, Green Bay, Indianapolis, Kansas City, New England, New Orleans, New York Jets, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Francisco and Tampa Bay. The Eagles had the biggest collection of personnel in attendance.
Leading those that were participating were the trio of quarterback Brett Smith, wide receiver Robert Herron and free safety/cornerback Marqueston Huff. Also showing their abilities were wide receiver Chris McNeil (2012), safety Luke Anderson (2012), defensive tackle Justin Bernthaler, wide receiver Jarrod Darden, runningback Tedder Easton and runningback/wide receiver Brandon Miller.
The likes of Smith, Herron and Huff are expected to hear their names called on either day two or three of the NFL draft which takes place on May 8-10 at the Music City Hall in New York City. The last time Wyoming had three players selected in the NFL draft, it was 1997 and before that in 1970.
The nine participants performed a wide variety of testing drills ranging from the standing long jump; vertical jump; 40-yard dash; three-cone drill; I-cone drill and the 60-yard shuttle. Leading the speed and agility drills was Andy Dengler, assistant director of player personnel for the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Some of the testing numbers for the main three prospects are as followed.
For Brett Smith, who has been working out with EXOS out of Carlsbad, California, this was his first chance to impress the teams on hand due to being snubbed for the NFL combine.
Smith measured 6016, 207-pounds and had 10-inch hands. He ran his 40-yard dash in a time of 4.51 seconds, which would have put him at the top of quarterback forty times at the combine. Better than Logan Thomas who ran 4.61 seconds and Johnny Manziel who ran a 4.68 seconds. Other testing results for Smith were a 10'8" broad jump and 18 bench press reps of 225-pounds.
When it came to passing drills (led by Jordan Palmer and Brent Calloway), he showed good velocity and accuracy on his throws. He was routinely throwing 55-65 yards passes with a lot of zip to show off his arm, which he wasn't able to showcase as much throughout his career at Wyoming due to questionable protection. He also displayed a ability to throw 45 yards down the field while throwing across his body on roll-outs.
Smith's performance caught the attention of Eagles scouts who talked to him after his testing and as well as the Broncos who planned to bring him in for a workout.
As for wide receiver Robert Herron, who has been working out for EXOS out of Phoenix, Arizona, this was a opportunity to improve on his numbers he put up in Indianapolis.
During the NFL combine Herron ran a quality time of 4.48 seconds in the 40-yard dash but definitely slower than what many expected and he himself. At the combine the talk was that Herron played faster than his time showed. Back in Laramie, he verified that he was actually faster than his 4.48 like most assumed. Herron blazed the field with unofficial 4.29 and 4.25 second 40-yard dashes. The slowest time recorded by any scout in attendance was 4.33 seconds.
When it came to field drills, Herron showed his typical quick acceleration off the line of scrimmage, his soft hands and his ability to make adjustments on deep balls. One can only imagine the type of numbers vertically Herron would've been able to put up this past season if Smith had more time to look deep.
Herron definitely helped his stock in a already very deep and talented wide receiver draft class. The train of thought is that he could slip into the second day of the draft.
Lastly we had free safety/cornerback Marqueston Huff who ran a unofficial 4.47 second 40-yard dash to slightly improve on his 4.49 second forty he ran at the combine. Huff stood on most of his testing numbers from the combine but did perform field drills to try to showcase his improved footwork.
Greg Williams, assistant secondary coach for the San Diego Chargers ran the defensive back positional drills for Huff and Anderson.
Huff spoke with the Chicago Bears and had already worked out for the Chargers the day before.
Another player that had some buzz following him after his workout was runningback/wide receiver Brandon Miller.
With a little over a month left until the draft, all NFL hopefuls go back to their place of training or home to prepare to hopefully hear their names called on draft weekend. Any player that isn't drafted has the chance to be picked up and signed by a team as a undrafted free-agent.