A handful of the 17 college prospects invited to the Chiefs local Pro Day Tuesday afternoon will find their way onto an NFL roster this fall. Maybe even in Kansas City.
For the majority, however, the five-hour Pro Day represented a once in a lifetime opportunity to train in front of NFL coaches inside a team facility.
“I think that you will find that exposure in this business is one of the things that will help you,” Chiefs head coach Romeo Crennel told the pro hopefuls. “The more exposure you get, the better opportunity you may have as you go down the road. Our whole staff is here and everybody is watching, taking notes about how you work and how you move.
Donald Stephenson, a left tackle from the University of Oklahoma and a product of Blue Springs High School in Blue Springs, Missouri, headlined the group and commanded much of the day’s attention. He’s projected by many scouting services to go in the middle rounds of April’s draft.
The Chiefs don’t make Pro Day results public, but the highlight of the day might have the vertical jump performance of Mid-America Nazarene University fullback Brandon Smith. Here’s video of the 5’11” 230-pounder jumping 40” at former Chiefs linebacker Mark Simoneau’s sports performance facility in Overland Park, Kansas.
Smith played defensive line at MNU and tallied 28.0 sacks over his college career, but trained as a fullback in Pro Day drills.
MNU supplied the most locals with three players working out for the Chiefs. There are currently four former Chiefs on the coaching staff at the NAIA powerhouse: QB Jonathan Quinn (2002-03), RB Kimble Anders (1993-98, 2000), DE Duane Clemons (2000-02) and LB Anthony Davis (1996-98).
Quinn has served as the Pioneers’ head coach since 2009 and has compiled a 32-4 (.889) record at the school.
After the Pro Day concluded, Crennel reminded the local hopefuls that anything can happen in the NFL business.
“You have to stay in shape,” Crennel said. “If you’re in shape when somebody calls for a workout, then you have a chance to make a good showing. If you’re not in shape when someone calls, you’ll look bad and coaches will say you’re not ready to go and that you don’t really want it. So you’ve got to keep working.”
Here are a few photos from the workout…
Mizzou vs. OU
Missouri G Jayson Palmgren works with Oklahoma T Donald Stephenson in offensive line drills. Stephenson is rated as the 10th-best tackle prospect in this year’s draft class by nfldraftscout.com.
Dunsmore Shows Receiving Skills
Northwestern TE Drake Dunsmore, a graduate of St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Lenexa, Kansas, showed off his athleticism in receiving drills. Dunsmore lined up all over the field for the Wildcats as a tight end/fullback/h-back.
Chiefs offensive quality control coach Jim Bob Cooter throws to receivers while UCLA’s Taylor Embree (9) and William Jewell’s Phil Freeman (17) look on. Embree’s father, Jon, served as tight ends coach for the Chiefs from 2006-08 and is currently the head coach at the University of Colorado. Embree prepped at Blue Valley West High School in Overland Park, KS.
Daboll Gets Going
Chiefs offensive coordinator Brian Daboll served as a mock defender for many of the throwing drills. Assistants Jim Zorn, Jim Bob Cooter and Derius Swinton played quarterback since the Pro Day featured no QB prospects.