Players aim to impress NFL scouts on Pro Day

This year's Arizona State pro day may have lacked the hype of last year's event, yet plenty of NFL scouts were on hand on Friday to evaluate the likes of Brandon Magee, Keelan Johnson, Cameron Marshall, Rashad Ross, Jamal Miles, and other outgoing ASU seniors.

After a disappointing senior campaign in which he tallied only 582 yards on the ground, running back Cameron Marshall needed a quality performance to show that he is ready for the next level and he delivered. On the bench press, Marshall pumped out 22 reps and with his nine-pound lighter frame, he ran a 4.5 in the 40-yard dash.

"I felt like I had a lot to prove today and I thought I did a really good job, (the scouts) were really happy with my results," Marshall said.

Marshall has been prepping for the NFL with his dad back in Northern California. When asked if he likes his chances of being taken in the draft, Marshall said that he feels good about his opportunities.

"I don't know whether it's drafting or free agents, but wherever I end up is where I'm supposed to be," Marshall said. "I still have a lot to prove going into this next level stuff. There was a lot of stuff that I didn't get to accomplish on the field this year that I definitely want to use as my motivation for next year. "

One of the former Sun Devils that really stood out at pro day was deep threat wideout Rashad Ross. With a 35" vertical and 4.34 40 time, Ross definitely opened some eyes. His straight-line speed is something that can surely be utilized at the NFL level.

"I feel like I ran great today, I did what I had to do," Ross said. "I feel like I have a lot of potential, here I didn't get to show it as much. I really didn't get the rock a lot (this year). I came off kind of slow just because of the new system and everything but as the season went on I got stronger."

In his last game as a Sun Devil, Ross caught three touchdowns on four receptions for 139 yards against Navy in the Kraft Fight Hunger Bowl, showcasing his top-end speed.

Excelling in special teams at both the junior college and Division I level when he had the chance, Ross feels like he can make a significant impact right away in the NFL as a returner.

Arguably Arizona State's top playmaker in 2011, wide receiver Jamal Miles was primed to stand out in his senior season. A season later and no touchdowns to show for in his final year as a Sun Devil, things didn't go according to plan.

"Senior year wasn't what I expected," Miles said. "The touches dropped this year from what I had last year so that came into play with my performance."

Throwing that all aside, Miles came out and had a respectable pro day, running a 4.44 40 and recording a 36" vertical in front of the scouts.

"I feel like I ran pretty solid, it's a little slower than what I expected but I still think it was a solid performance," Miles said. "A couple of teams have stopped me and talked to me, they said that they are looking for a running-back type style returner."

Like Ross, Miles has the chance to make an impact in the NFL on special teams. In his junior year, Miles recorded three return touchdowns and gained 788 yards off kickoffs.

A year removed from his senior season at ASU, linebacker Shelly Lyons was a participant in the pro day activities.

"I just wanted to come out today and run my 40, show scouts that I've improved from last year," Lyons said. His time of 4.64 at this pro day is significantly better than his 4.8 at the end of his senior year.

After going undrafted in 2012, Lyons got some NFL camp experience playing for the Miami Dolphins in all four preseason games before being cut late in August.

Lyons thinks having a NFL camp under his belt will help him this year as he tries to make a roster.

"Right now I'm just in a grey area you know, nothing is for certain," Lyons said. "My thing right now is just to get on an NFL roster for camp and show them what I can do and make it however I can."


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