After Mids quarterback Keenan Reynolds was not invited to the NFL Scouting Combine late last month the Navy Pro Day suddenly took on a little more relevance. Reynolds was the main attraction, the marquee draw, as scouts from 18 National Football League takes descended on Annapolis for an event that saw eight Navy football players given the opportunity to showcase their skills and give the talent evaluators an idea of how they would project at the next level.
Reynolds had good and bad times at the pro day. Early on his measurable were exceptional, with the 5-foot-11, 205-pounder throwing down a vertical leap of 37.5 inches and a 10-foot long broad jump. These marks speak to the explosive power of Reynolds, a trait the NFL scouts want to see as powerful legs increase the ability of a player to break arm tackles and turn two or three yard gains into six or seven yard runs. These marks were also among the best posted by skill position players at the combine itself.
Reynolds was also on during his first attempt at the 40-yard dash. His time of 4.56 seconds was very reasonable, but he clearly tweaked his hamstring at the end of the run. After some debate with his trainer and agent, Reynolds decided to cut his losses and call it a day rather than run again. The thinking behind this was that a poor time could be used against him in the draft and that he could easily turn the slight tweak into something much worse by running again.
The big downside here was not Reynolds inability to run the dash for a second time, but that the injury prevented him from doing the on field workouts that followed. Reynolds was scheduled to showcase his receiving skills by catching passes from specially invited Georgetown quarterback Kyle Nolan. Many scouts see Reynolds NFL future as a slot receiver and he has spent much of this pre-draft process catching balls from the JUGS machine and working on his route running. Showcasing those aspects of his game will now have to wait for another day.
Other Mids that stood out on the day were fullback Chris Swain, nose guard Bernie Sarra and defensive end Will Anthony. OF the three it was Swain who really made the most of his opportunity as he benched the 225 pound bar 23 times before running the 40 in 4.67 seconds. Swain is quickly rising up draft boards because his size/speed/strength ratio is off the charts. There is a definite niche in the NFL for short yardage, power runners and the 245-pounder gets up to speed very quickly for someone with his frame. If Swain can add an ability to catch balls out of the backfield to his resume then there is a decent chance he will get a shot somewhere in the league.