Scouts and coaches from NFL teams across the country attended Spider Football’s Pro Day on March 19 in Robins Stadium.
The athletes that participate in Pro Day have exhausted their eligibility, since they either graduated in December or will be graduating in May, coach Danny Rocco said. Rodney Barnes, Kevin Finne, Kendall Gaskins, Darryl Hamilton, John Laub and Cooper Taylor were among the players who participated in the day’s activities.
More than 20 of the 32 NFL teams had representatives attend this year’s Pro Day, Rocco said.
Throughout the day, athletes participated in the same activities that take place at the NFL Combine, including bench press, vertical jump, standing long jump and a 40-yard dash, among others, Rocco said.
Senior Kendall Gaskins decided to participate in Pro Day so that he could ultimately play football at the next level, he said. Gaskins participated in all of the activities and was happy with his overall performance, he said.
“It helped to reassure the scouts of my ability and hopefully raised my stock,” Gaskins said.
Although Pro Day took place this month, players will not know whether they will be drafted until the NFL Draft, April 25 through April 27, Rocco said. If a player has not been drafted, he is considered a free agent, and could be picked up by any team at any time, he said.
In the meantime, Gaskins has been in contact with various teams, conducting interviews and exchanging information, he said. Gaskins does not care which team he is drafted to, as long as he is able to show his abilities, he said.
In the past, Pro Day has jump-started the careers of former Spiders and current NFL players, including Lawrence Sidbury of the Indianapolis Colts defensive line and Justin Rogers, running back for the Buffalo Bills.
Although the official Richmond football season does not begin until next semester, the team has been practicing three times per week since spring break in preparation for its annual scrimmage on April 20 in Robins Stadium, Rocco said.
Football players are not required to stay in Richmond during the summer, but Rocco and the coaching staff highly recommends that they stay close to campus to continue working together as a team and in the weight room, he said. The summer is a great time to build team unity, Rocco said, especially as freshmen arrive to assimilate to college life.
Contact reporter Gaby Calabrese at firstname.lastname@example.org