Carnahan, Matt Miller Seek NFL Careers

They may have graduated in different years, but both these ex-Sun Devils share a common theme. Andrew Carnahan and Matt Miller hope that their knee injuries won't derail their chances of playing in the NFL. Devils Digest sat down with the two during ASU's pro day, to talk about their efforts to overcome adversity and get a shot at playing on Sundays.

It's ironic that offensive lineman Andrew Carnahan, who started every game in his ASU career and had the most starts of anyone on the 2006 roster, had to succumb to injury in his senior year. Furthermore, he's a three-time Hard Hat winner for his work in ASU's strength and conditioning program. His illustrious career at ASU was most likely going to lead to being selected in the NFL draft.

Alas, an ACL injury against Cal in the fourth game of the 2006 season changed all of that. He still participated in the NFL combine in Indianapolis, and said that even though he obviously wasn't able to go through the whole array of workouts, he did achieve an important goal. "It was great going there and getting exposure," he said. "All the doctors there that looked at my knee were happy with the condition of it and that was one the biggest reasons I went out there – to show that I'm on track with my rehab."

Carnahan mentioned that his on-schedule to finish rehabbing between the end of June and early July. He's not sure if that prognosis will be good enough for a free agent contract, but there's another event that could stir some teams to take action regarding him. "I go back to Indianapolis for a recheck and a physical, and we'll see what happens after that," he said. "My agent hasn't heard yet from a lot of teams, because they all want to see if the knee rehab is on-track. I should be all right."

Matt Miller (pictured)had a fine Pro Day in 2006, until a torn ACL cut the workout short and squashed any chance he had at the NFL draft that year. Yet, he has no regrets over the rough times he had to go through. "If it wasn't for my injury, I wouldn't meet my fiancé," he stated. "I'm happy with my home life and I'm ready to play some football."

In his rehab, Miller trained with Andy Bowman, who's a martial arts expert. Bowman trained former Sun Devil Kyle Caldwell, as well as the Phoenix Suns' Gorilla mascot. "I've done well there. He put some size on me. I'm at 191 and I'm in the best shape of my life," noted Miller. "I was able to stay fast, so I feel good."

In his senior year in 2005, the wide receiver had career-highs in receiving yards (563) and touchdowns (seven). Up until that year, he always felt that he had to prove himself so he could earn playing time. It's that mentality that hasn't allowed him to sulk when things look bleak, and ultimately excel in front of NFL scouts. "It's all about second chances for me, even here at ASU," said Miller. "It feels great coming out here and running again – I ran a 4.4 and that was my goal. The scouts said I caught the ball well, so I'm happy."

It's probably not a coincidence that a couple of west coast teams are already showing interest in the wide receiver and in one case he may be battling a former teammate for a roster spot. "I talked to the Raiders and the Chargers, and hopefully I can get picked up as a free agent and go for a tryout at a three-day mini-camp," he commented. "I heard Shaun McDonald is with the Chargers so I'm looking forward to that (competing with him). I've done it once and I'm ready to do it again. He's a great competitor and I know I can learn from him…I hope that after a mini-camp I can sign a contract."

"Either way I'm gonna keep on playing football," Miller continued. "If this (NFL) doesn't work out, I'm gonna try and play in Canada. I'm a football player and that's what I want to do. I'm gonna keep on doing that until injuries or someone else tells me otherwise."

Sun Devil Source Top Stories