It's Pro Day season, and that means Atlanta's scouting department has been busy traveling around the country checking out draft-eligible players at their respective Pro Days. Let's take a look at where they've been so far, and the players the Falcons have been linked to over this time period.
The Falcons reportedly had a scout attend the University of Minnesota's Pro Day. The Gophers have a handful of players who might fill positions of need for Atlanta, including 6'6", 311 pound defensive tackle Ra'shede Hageman and safety Brock Vereen.
The Falcons had personnel on hand at Auburn's Pro Day, and they were likely watching offensive line prospect Greg Robinson closely. Per Walter Football, the Falcons have already had a private meeting with Robinson during the Combine. Outside linebacker Dee Ford put in an impressive performance after being medically unable to participate in the Combine.
The Falcons visited Buffalo to take a closer look at linebacker Khalil Mack, who had an extremely impressive performance. Mack beat his 40 time from the Combine and had a very impressive Pro Day overall.
Atlanta had representatives at the University of Arkansas for their Pro Day, and Tony Pauline on Walter Football reportsthat the Falcons met extensively with defensive tackle Bryan Jones. Jones was unable to participate in Pro Day activities after suffering an injury in training the previous week.
The Falcons had their eye on some prospects at Northern Arizona's Pro Day. According to Gil Brandt, the two players who stood out were defensive tackle Tim Wilkinson, who is tiny for a DT at 5'11" and 291 pounds, and also running back Zach Bauman, who is just over 5'7" and 197 pounds.
Thomas Dimitroff himself was at Texas A&M's Pro Day to see offensive tackle Jake Matthews in action. Matthews, considered by many to be the top offensive line prospect in this year's draft, previously met with Atlanta during the Combine. Per Gil Brandt, outside linebacker Nate Askew also had a good showing at A & M's Pro Day. Askew may not be in high demand as he has transitioned to linebacker from receiver prior to the 2013 and will be a project at the position. Askew posted 4.45 and 4.44 40-yard dashes.
The Falcons visited the University of Wisconsin to take a look at some of their draft-eligible players during their Pro Day. Notable prospects include linebacker Chris Borland, receiver Jared Abbrederis, running back James White, and safety Dezmen Southward, who played cornerback in the Senior Bowl.
The Falcons were at Clemson's Pro Day, and got to witness quarterback Tajh Boyd improve his stock with a stellar performance. Receiver Sammy Watkins, who is great but unlikely to be a target for Atlanta, also had an impressive performance.
Atlanta had personnel on hand to evaluate players at the University of Illinois Pro Day. Outside linebacker Jonathan Brown may be of interest for depth at the position. He's projected to be a late round pick or available as a college free agent following the draft. Tiny Illini receiver Ryan Lankford demonstrated his considerable speed at his Pro Day. He's also likely to be available as a late round pick.
Ohio State featured some intriguing prospects at their Pro Day, and Atlanta was on hand to witness linebacker Ryan Shazier's blazing-fast 40-yard dash. Shazier clocked in with an unofficial time of anywhere from 4.36 to 4.41. He tweaked his hamstring in the process, but it's not a serious injury. Jack Mewhort, a very good guard prospect, worked out with a number of teams during Pro Day. Running back Carlos Hyde hurt himself slightly at the combine and was not cleared to run the 40, but participated in all of his position drills and was impressive.
The Falcons visited Texas Christian University for their Pro Day, and one of the more intriguing prospects they got to see in action is from nearlby Abilene Christian University. Running back Daryl Richardson posted a 4.49 40-yard dash time on a wet track. Richardson performed well in other drills and also caught the ball well. He's projected to potentially be a 7th round pick.
We'll have more updates on upcoming Pro Days as they happen. Weigh in on the Falcons' Pro Day focus so far!