Pro Day Tour: Ansah and Kicker

Ziggy Ansah wasn't only pro prospect at BYU on Thursday. A record-setting kicker, however, was the top player at Louisiana-Lafayette. Plus, three more schools on the pro day circuit.

There might not be a more polarizing player in this draft than BYU's Ezekiel Ansah.

Ansah (6-5, 271) is an astounding athlete. He ran in 4.63 at the Scouting Combine with a 34.5-inch vertical.

But he is raw. Very raw.

Born and raised in Ghana, Ansah was noticed by a LDS Church missionary and went to BYU because he wanted to be like his favorite athlete, LeBron James. He failed to make the basketball squad twice, so gave track and field a shot in 2009. He was so good in the 400 that the track coaches showed him the way to the football offices. He played special teams and defensive end in 2010 and special teams and outside linebacker in 2011 before going back to end in 2012. Despite not starting until the fifth game of the season, he tallied 4.5 sacks and 13 tackles for losses and picked off a pass in the bowl game.

However, as one scout put it, "He spends more time on the ground than Astroturf."

He could play outside linebacker for the Packers. Green Bay even had a formal interview with him at the Scouting Combine, a source told Packer Report. But Ansah figures to be long gone by the time the Packers are on the clock at No. 26.

Offensive linemen Braden Brown (6-6, 310) and Braden Hansen (6-5, 306) look like solid Day 3 prospects. Brown was a three-year starting tackle with long arms, big hands and excellent tools (5.20 in the 40 and 26 reps on the bench). He had an excellent position workout. The Packers almost always draft offensive tackles so he might be a player of interest. Hansen was a four-year starter at guard.

Alabama

Eddie Lacy, the powerhouse Alabama running back, will work out for scouts on April 11. Lacy (5-11, 231) ended the season as the consensus first running back off the board but might have ceded that position to Michigan State's Le'Veon Bell. As a junior in 2012, Lacy rushed for 1,322 yards (6.5 average) and 17 touchdowns.

Here are the other schools with a Packers scout in attendance.

Louisiana-Lafayette

The Packers have a new kicker with Giorgio Tavecchio signed to challenge Mason Crosby. Nonetheless, the Packers sent a scout to watch Brett Baer, who made 45-of-50 career field goal attempts; his 90.0 percent accuracy is tops in NCAA history. Among the makes was a 50-yarder on the final play to win the 2011 New Orleans Bowl.

On Thursday, Baer was asked to kick only eight field goals, according to a source. By contrast, Florida's Caleb Sturgis and Florida State's Dustin Hopkins had 15 attempts at their pro days. Baer missed from 45 to start his workout but made the next six, including hitting from 60, before missing from 60.

Also, defensive end Cordian Hughes (6-5, 299) had an impressive day with a 4.9 in the 40 and 24 reps on the bench. He went through defensive line drills, guided by a New England scout, as well as offensive line drills, led by a Chiefs scout.

Sam Houston State

Cornerback Dax Swanson (5-10, 186) is considered a late-round possibility. He ran 4.56 at the Combine with a 33-inch vertical and reduced that to as low as 4.41, according to a source. Swanson owns Bearkats records for single-season interceptions (eight in 2011) and career interceptions (14). He nabbed four picks as a senior, including one against Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel.

Central Arkansas

The lone prospect, at least according to NFL Draft Scout, is receiver Jesse Grandy (5-11, 164). Grandy spent his first two seasons at Ole Miss. As a sophomore there in 2010, he averaged 14.7 yards on punt returns with a touchdown. As a senior, he caught 61 passes for 797 yards and seven touchdowns, averaged 12.5 yards on punt returns with a touchdown and 26.1 yards on kickoff returns.

Grandy arrived late because he had an exam to take, and was sick and threw up four times during workouts. Still, he ran in the high 4.4s and had a 36-inch vertical. He ran 4.29 for scouts when they tested him as a junior.

Northern Iowa

Terrell Sinkfield (6-1, 192), who ran the believe-it-or-not 4.19 in the 40 at Minnesota's pro day a couple weeks ago, ran in the 4.3s at Northern Iowa on Wednesday. As a senior for UNI, he caught 43 passes for 499 yards (11.6 average) and four touchdowns. He caught six balls for 67 yards against Wisconsin in the opener.


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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and PackerReport.com and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at packwriter2002@yahoo.com, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at twitter.com/PackerReport.


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