NFL personal workouts for the 2020 draft class have been canceled, affecting hundreds of player’s draft stock. Being able to show what you can do in front of scout’s eyes can even decide whether or not you get drafted. That is why most college programs offer their players a “Pro-Day” where they can invite NFL teams to come to take a look in case certain players were not invited to the official NFL combine or selected not to participate in certain events (as lots of players do).
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there will be no Pro-Days as well. So, what now? What can players do? Players are determined to show what they have and have resorted to video-taping workouts and posting online or sending the footage directly to teams. These videos tend to include standard Pro-Day events such as their measurables (height & weight), 40-yard dash, cone drills, and position-specific drills.
Alabama star Tua Tagovailoa is among those who filmed their own Pro-day. Granted, he has a lot of question marks surrounding him due to his injury history which ended his final college season and forced him to sit out important drills during the 2020 NFL Combine.
While the argument could be made that this hurts everyone, I would argue that this helps the players who are currently in the “will not be drafted” group. Now, the players who would usually not be able to get in front of scouts anyways are on the same playing field as those that would. Scouts get to see them in the same light and GMs can’t say that they are picking a player over another just because they saw one in person and not the other.
The draft starts April 23rd with the 1st round, followed by the 2nd and 3rd rounds on April 24th, and lastly rounds 4 through 7 (A.K.A the speed rounds) on April 25th. As the draft goes on, it is my assumption that you will see these virtual workouts changing the destiny for more and more players. In an unprecedented time, the NFL draft will be an odd event this year that we will not soon forget. No handshakes with the commissioner for selected players and no live fan reaction will give this draft an eerie feel. Nonetheless, the show must go on and one of the landmarks of the NFL season will continue as scheduled!