Notes from a star-studded Washington pro day

Apr 2, 2015, 7:22 PM | Updated: Apr 8, 2016, 10:50 am
Cornerback Marcus Peters was one of three potential first-round picks who worked out at UW’s ...
Cornerback Marcus Peters was one of three potential first-round picks who worked out at UW's pro day. (AP)
(AP)

The University of Washington held its annual pro day Thursday as scouts and front-office personnel from several teams came to watch the Huskies’ NFL hopefuls, a group that includes three who could be chosen in the first round. Here are a few notes.

Photos | Video: Shaq Thompson, Marcus Peters, Kasen Williams, Hau’oli Kikaha

Light day for UW’s Big 3. Nose tackle Danny Shelton, linebacker Shaq Thompson and cornerback Marcus Peters mostly stuck to positional drills, opting not to run in the 40-yard dash or take part in other workouts and instead letting their combine numbers stand. This isn’t unusual for top prospects, though it was somewhat surprising that Thompson didn’t attempt to improve his combine 40 time of 4.64, which was considered underwhelming. Thompson took part in defensive-back drills in addition to linebacker drills. According to Rob Rang of NFLDraftScout.com, Thompson also bench-pressed – performing 20 reps – after being unable to do so at the combine because of a thumb injury.

Shelton waiting. “It’s all just waiting right now,” Shelton said, referring to what’s next for him in the pre-draft process. It’s true in a couple of senses. He said he hasn’t visited with any teams as of yet but has an upcoming visit with the Browns, who have an opening at nose tackle after losing Ahtyba Rubin in free agency to Seattle. “That’s the only team that’s really been contacting me,” he said of Cleveland. Shelton is also waiting for an invitation to the draft in Chicago, which he said he’d like to attend. Shelton is projected as high as a top-10 pick.

Peters returns. The UW allowed Peters to take part even though he was dismissed from the team for disciplinary reasons midway through last season. “It’s wonderful. It feels good. It feels good,” he said when asked about how it feels to be back. Peters, considered one of the top cornerbacks in this draft, said he has met with three teams and has a few more visits lined up but declined to specify which teams.

Kikaha getting comfortable. Hau’oli Kikaha led the nation in sacks last season with 19 as an edge rusher, but at around 250 pounds his job description at the next level might include dropping into coverage as an outside linebacker, which he’s been working on. “It’s something that I hadn’t really worked on in the past,” he said. “These past couple months it’s been a good focus point for me. I feel a lot better, a little bit more smooth in transitions. Felt comfortable.” Then he asked with a smile: “How’d it look? Did it look alright? I felt good.” The pro day was particularly important for Kikaha considering how he wasn’t able to work out at the combine because of an illness. He posted a vertical jump of 34.5 inches Thursday, which would have tied for seventh among defensive linemen at the combine. According to Rang, Kikaha’s times in the 40-yard dash were “high 4.8s to mid 4.9s.” Kikaha did attend the combine and said “there were probably about 100 doctors” that examined the ACL that he has torn twice.”They all seemed to be pretty happy with it, so nobody has really asked ever since,” he said.

Williams happy with 40, foot. After sustaining a nasty foot injury that required surgery during his junior season and catching a career-low 20 passes as a senior, Kasen Williams was hoping to show on Thursday that neither his speed nor his route-running are an issue. Mission accomplished? He believes so. Williams, who’s listed at 6 feet 3 and 217 pounds, said he ran the 40 in 4.52 seconds. “A lot of people didn’t know I had the speed and they was looking me like a 4.6 guy,” he said. “I just needed to get in the 4.5 range and once I did that I think I turned some heads today.” Williams said his foot is now 100 percent and doesn’t affect his ability to make cuts. “I wanted to make sure that everyone knows that I don’t have problems with my foot anymore and I hope I showed that today,” he said. Williams said he wasn’t all that satisfied with his 35.5-inch vertical leap.

Seahawks’ contingent. The Seahawks tend to be well-represented at UW pro days given their close proximity, and this year was no exception. Several assistant coaches from both sides of the ball were on hand in addition to head coach Pete Carroll, general manager John Schneider and a handful of scouts. Three players also observed: linebackers Bobby Wagner, Brock Coyle and Kevin Pierre-Louis. San Francisco’s Trent Baalke and Washington’s Scot McCloughan were among the other general managers in attendance.

Roll call. Former Huskies quarterback Keith Price was among the participants, throwing passes to receivers, running backs and tight ends. The other listed participants who have yet to be mentioned: James Atoe, Jesse Callier, DiAndre Campbell, Mike Criste, Travell Dixon, Mike Hartvigson, Micah Hatchie, Andrew Hudson, Evan Hudson, Jon Kwon, Taz Stevenson, Everette Thompson, John Timu, Tre Watson.

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Notes from a star-studded Washington pro day