The Iowa State, Princeton, and Tulane Pro Days were the next stops on the NFL Pro Day schedule, as several highly-rated prospects worked out in front of NFL decision-makers. Let’s take a look at why Will McDonald IV and Xavier Hutchinson earned top billing during today’s showcase and the other headlines coming out of Iowa State, Princeton, and Tulane.
Iowa State Pro Day Gets Large Turnout
There was a huge turnout at Iowa State Pro Day, with 49 NFL personnel members on hand.
The Steelers had general manager Omar Khan, head coach Mike Tomlin, defensive coordinator Teryl Austin, as well as Dan Rooney Jr. on hand. The Tennessee Titans had outside linebacker coach Ryan Crow and director of college scouting Jon Salge in attendance.
The Saints were represented by receivers coach Kodi Burns, the Packers had general manager Brian Gutekunst and director of football operations Milt Hendrickson in the building, and the Jaguars had Bill Shuey, their outside linebacker coach, at the event.
The Cowboys had major representation in the form of defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, VP of player personnel Will McClay, and Mitch LaPoint, their director of college scouting. The Cardinals also sent their VP of layer personnel Quentin Harris.
Will McDonald, Xavier Hutchinson Steal Show at Iowa State Pro Day
As expected, the star of the show was Will McDonald IV. His 40 times came in at 4.62 to 4.65 seconds. McDonald ran the 40 wearing a short sleeve hoody. NFL personnel people joked he would’ve run under 4.60 seconds without the extra draft.
His three-cone times were as fast as 6.60 seconds, and his short shuttle was 4.21 seconds. He looked terrific in drills, and there were many compliments about McDonald’s agility and ability to bend. The only criticism I heard was McDonald looked off balance because he’s “Too fast for his body.”
He participated in both defensive line and linebacker drills. Teams project McDonald as a one-gap defensive end in a 4-3 alignment or a 3-4 outside linebacker.
McDonald had dinner with the Steelers brass on Monday night. He also met with the Los Angeles Rams, Arizona Cardinals, New Orleans Saints, Kansas City Chiefs, and Jacksonville Jaguars. McDonald has 16 requests for official visits in the lead-up to the draft but will not be able to accommodate all of them.
Defensive lineman MJ Anderson, who’s been struggling with a bad hamstring since January, saw the injury flare up again during his first running of the 40 but gutted out the entire workout. His 40 times ranged between 4.85 to 4.95 seconds, and he clocked as fast as 7.78 seconds in the three-cone and 4.75 in the short shuttle. Anderson posted a vertical jump of 33″ at the Combine.
Cowboys DC Quinn ran the drills, and Anderson did defensive end and a few linebacker drills. Teams were impressed he chose to workout through the injury rather than call it a day. Anderson is being talked about as either a 3-tech or a 5-tech at the next level.
Besides meeting with the Rams, Packers, Cowboys, and Steelers the past two days, Anderson had dinner with the Washington Commanders on Monday.
Star wide receiver Xavier Hutchinson looked tremendous in position drills. His route running was crisp and sharp. Hutchinson caught everything thrown in his direction. The New Orleans Saints got what they came to see.
Andrei Iosivas Shows Out at Princeton Pro Day
There was a large turnout at Princeton as 31 teams were on hand for the workout — most notable was Las Vegas Raiders director of pro personnel Dwayne Joseph. Most were present for receiver Andrei Iosivas, a Senior Bowl and Combine participant. But there were other surprises from the Ivy League school standout.
Iosivas sat on his Combine numbers but did position drills. He caught everything thrown his way, and his route running was better than expected. The Jets and Bengals had WR coaches on hand. Saints offensive assistant and assistant to the head coach Kevin Petry was also in attendance and had dinner with Iosivas on Monday evening.
While I have Iosivas as a late-round prospect, there are many who believe his size (6’3″, 205 pounds), speed (4.43 at the Combine), and athleticism (Iosivas was a decathlete and multi-event track champion at Princeton) will push him into the middle rounds.
Princeton offensive center Henry Byrd turned a few heads this morning. Byrd measured 6’5″, 310 pounds, touched 33″ in the vertical jump, 9’7″ in the broad, and timed as fast as 5.16 in the 40. His three-cone was 7.7 seconds, and his short shuttle was 4.52 seconds. Some came away from the workout believing Byrd may have worked himself into the late part of Round 7.
Matthew Jester put on a show for scouts during today’s workout. Jester measured 6’3″, 252 pounds, completed 27 reps on the bench, and timed anywhere from 4.52 to 4.62 seconds in the 40. His vertical jump was 37.5″ with a broad of 10’1″. He was as fast as 7.25 seconds in the three-cone.
Jester was a linebacker for Princeton and recorded 30 tackles each of the past two seasons. Besides participating in linebacker drills today, he also caught passes today as some teams believe a move to fullback is in his future. The results were positive, as Jester looked smooth catching the football.
Tiffin’s Tyler Richardson Performs at Tulane’s Pro Day
Tiffin cornerback Tyler Richardson, graded as a late-round draft pick entering the season, took part in Tulane’s Pro Day Monday to display his skills in front of almost 20 teams.
Richardson measured 5’10” and 193 pounds and timed in the high 4.4-second range in the 40-yard dash. He’s a long defensive back projected to be a priority free agent. Richardson met with the Raiders, Cowboys, and Commanders.