Sunday, April 03, 2016

Pro Day

Cody Fulleton jumps for the scouts. 
Dartmouth coach Buddy Teevens has said many times that he wants to bring talented players to Hanover whose goal – in addition to earning a great education and winning a few Ivy League championship rings – is to make it to the NFL.

Fulleton winds up for his jump.
No fewer than 10 seniors on last year's Ivy League championship team, and one from the Class of '15, spent several hours in Floren Varsity House and on the Memorial Field turf yesterday chasing the NFL dream in front of a cadre of more than a dozen scouts.

Among those who participated in the Dartmouth Pro Day (along with several players from the University of New Hampshire and St. Anselm) was All-Ivy League defensive end Cody Fulleton, perhaps the breakout star of the day. Fulleton has been training in San Diego with players from Power Five conferences like Penn State's Anthony Zettel and Kyle Carter, intent on showing a kid from a non-scholarship, FCS school belongs. He completed 38 reps in the 225-pound bench press yesterday, more than any lineman at the NFL Combine, that despite having three reps discounted from his original total of 41. And he had a 30-inch vertical while carrying 285 pounds on his 6-foot-3 frame.

"This has been my dream since I was a little kid, even before I started playing football," Fulleton said. "Coming out of high school I had one offer and it was to Dartmouth College. I remember sitting down with coach Teevens in his office the first day when he met me on an unofficial visit and I said, 'I want to play in the NFL.'

"He said this is the route. It doesn’t matter where you go. I would say to all the young guys out here and to anybody who is at a small school, you can do it if you are willing to put the work in."

Scouts measure Dalyn Williams.
Like Fulleton, Dartmouth quarterback Dalyn Williams took the winter off to prepare for his NFL bid. Although he's just seven pounds lighter than he was at Dartmouth he looks significantly leaner after working hard in Florida with AJ Zuttah and Zach Slafsky.

"Going away and training for three months in the winter was big," Williams said. "It was a chance to get faster and to work on stuff from under center."

A healthy percentage of Fulleton's and Williams' former teammates were among the several hundred people in the Memorial Field stands watching the Pro Day. Williams believes that sharing the pro dream makes everyone better.

"It helped having teammates who worked hard and had similar goals," he said. "That pushes you. It was a great atmosphere today and all the guys looked good. I wish it had been a little warmer, but all in all I think we controlled what we could control.

"I threw the ball pretty well and did pretty well in the agilities. I think it was a successful day for all of us."

Williams has a workout set with his hometown Dallas Cowboys on April 8. Fulleton has been invited to his hometown Seattle Seahawks' Pro Day.

Also working out yesterday was former defensive lineman Evan Chrustic '15.
Scouts from the Seahawks, Packers, Chiefs, Patriots and Raiders clock Dalyn Williams in a cone drill.
The scouts compare times.
Center Jacob Flores goes airborne . . .
. . . as does defensive lineman AJ Zuttah.
Linebacker Zach Slafsky keeps his eye on the ball.
Chai Reece runs the 40.
Vernon Harris, who trained in San Diego with Fulleton,  heads for the finish.
Victor Williams runs through the line.
Ryan McManus "elevates."
Buddy Teevens looks on as scouts share times.
The day ended with Dalyn Williams throwing passes to McManus, Victor Williams and several others. Here is the "script" he followed.
Teammates watch the goings-on in the weight room . . .
. . . and later outside.
Joining their coach for a team photo after the Pro Day were, from left, Vernon Harris, AJ Zuttah, Zach Slafsky, Troy Donahue (whose participation was limited by a pull at a previous workout), Jacob Flores, Teevens, Cody Fulleton, Victor Williams, Chai Reece, Ryan McManus and Dalyn Williams.