Da'Quan Bowers' workout drew all the attention today, but yesterday's Pro Day event at North Carolina might end up being a more important event for the St. Louis Rams and their 2011 NFL draft plans. The matinee in Chapel Hill featured several top NFL prospects, including a pair of defensive linemen and an under the radar receiver.
DE Robert Quinn had the best day, solidifying his first round stock. He not only improved his Combine performances, but the he went through drills displaying the kind of moves that put him so high on so many teams' draft boards. Here's a highlight from the report at Draft Breakdown:
Bears defensive coordinator Rod Marinelli took Quinn and Austin through a series of drills, testing their ability to fire off the ball and then quickly change directions. The drills then shifted to pass rush drills where Quinn and Austin had to display their hand quickness and strength. Quinn's hands can only be described as strong and active, which is rare for young pass rushers.
DT Marvin Austin also had a solid outing by all accounts. Whether he goes in the first or second round of the draft is the big question.
The Rams 14th pick is probably too far down for Quinn and too far up for Austin.
It was wide receiver Greg Little that really surprised everyone. Little ran good routes and didn't miss a pass thrown to him. Most felt like he soldified his status as a second day, second or third round, pick this year. Not so long ago, one draftnik said that Little wouldn't go before the third round because of character concerns. Tony Pauline said some teams took issue with his interviews at the Combine. Let the Mike Williams comparisons begin.