Irish Hold Pro Day

Notre Dame had their first of two Pro Days on Sunday afternoon. Several Irish players participated in the drills but all eyes were on quarterback Brady Quinn. He's trying to establish himself as the top prospect in this year's NFL Draft after a stellar career at Notre Dame. Representatives from all 32 teams were present but Quinn was the main attraction.

"Today was pretty good," Quinn said after the workout. "It wasn't my best, but it was pretty good. I think there's definitely still room for improvement."

Quinn's stock has been slipping in the past few weeks. He did not participate in the Senior Bowl week of practices because of a minor knee injury. Quinn also didn't throw or run at the recently completed NFL Combine in Indianapolis. In several mock drafts, he could go anywhere from No. 3 to Cleveland, No. 7 to Minnesota or No. 9 to Miami. The owners of the Vikings and Browns were among those in attendance.

"It's exciting," Quinn said about the owners' attendance. "Obviously you go to meet them at the combine and then anytime they come out to a pro day like this or a more private workout it shows what kind of vested interest they have. One, I think you have to be thankful for the fact they're able to come out here. Two, you have to be excited about the opportunity to workout in front of them and kind of show them what you're all about."

Coming into the college football season, Quinn was regarded as the overall best prospect. But since the Sugar Bowl loss to LSU, Tigers quarterback JaMarcus Russell, who was the MVP of the game, has bypassed him on almost every mock draft. Scouts have pointed to his lack of success in big games. Another possible downfall that scouts have is Quinn's lack of accuracy down the field. Irish head coach Charlie Weis, who ran Sunday's Pro Day, thinks otherwise.

"Did you see that?" Weis asked about a throw Quinn made. "The last post was thrown about 70 yards right on the money. A lot of times when people talk about under thrown and over thrown it comes down to being in synch with your receivers when they're running routes. But a lot of times even on short and intermediate routes, what looks like an inaccurate throw might not be the throw, it might be where the receiver is. People always want to say, ‘Hey, I wish he'd have thrown it there.' Maybe that's where the guy was supposed to be."

In addition to the owners of the Vikings and Browns in attendance, the head coaches were there as well. Cleveland's Romeo Crennel and Minnesota's Brad Childress saw the proceedings. The Browns might be focusing on Quinn and Oklahoma running back Adrian Peterson, who impressed teams last week at the Combine with his great workout and 40-yard dash time. Crennel liked what he saw from Quinn on Sunday.

"He's a polished quarterback," Crennel said, who was an assistant with Weis in New England. "He's smart. When you watch him on tape you can see he knows where to go with the ball. He will at times throw it away when he has to. So we think he's a good young prospect."

According to the pool report, Quinn completed 58 of the 63 passes he threw with several of the incompletions being dropped. He'll go back to Arizona and train for a few weeks before returning to campus for the second Notre dame Pro Day on March 22nd. At that session, he'll participate in a 40-yard dash, shuttle run and vertical jump drill. Quinn wanted to give his right knee, after a bout with bursitis, more team to heal.

"I'm not thinking about any particular team," Quinn said. "I just want to go No. 1. That's really what I'm looking forward to. And I hope that will be the case in the end."

There wasn't alot a lot of other statistical information released. The pool report stated that Rhema McKnight and Darius Walker ran 40-yard dashes. Offensive linemen Ryan Harris and Dan Santucci battled each other in drills. Harris benched pressed 225-pounds 25 times, which is three more than what he achieved at the Combine in Indianapolis. Cornerback Mike Richardson ran down and caught both deep balls thrown his direction in a drill. Defensive tackle Derek Landri, who injured himself in the Sugar Bowl loss, isn't working out until March 22. Current Notre Dame players in attendance watching the Pro Day were John Carlson, John Sullivan, Demetrius Jones, Jimmy Clausen, Terrail Lambert and Geoff Price.

***This story was pieced together through the pool report from the AP writer at the Notre Dame Pro Day. Top Stories