Each day between now and the NFL Draft features multiple pro days around the country, forcing scouts and general managers around the league to collect countless frequent flier miles. Thursday alone there were no less than six schools showcasing their players.
One of those schools was Clemson, a team that had a disappointing 6-7 season but has a few players that could fit in with Kansas City. The spotlight was moved onto those players after the scheduled star of the show — Da’Quan Bowers — sat out due to a lingering knee injury. The expected top 10 pick will hold his own workout on April 1 and — barring a major move up the draft board by Scott Pioli — is not on the Chiefs radar.
Defensive tackle Jarvis Jenkins never received the same sort of attention as Bowers, but he was All-ACC this season and an honorable mention selection as a junior. On top of his 51 tackles (nine for a loss), Jenkins blocked two kicks this season and one each his junior and sophomore seasons, respectively. That is a big deal for a team that needs to improve on special teams.
Jenkins isn’t going to be a huge factor rushing the passer, but will fill plenty of space in the run game. Pioli might prefer to go the free agent route on the defensive line, but if not, Jenkins would be a fit. The Kansas City front office will no doubt notice that Jenkins was named a permanent team captain
A name that we are most likely to hear again is OT Chris Hairston. Another All-ACC selection, Hairston is massive at 6’6″, 326 pounds and could turn out to be the long-term answer at right tackle for Kansas City with a little tweaking.
Some scouts I have talked to worry about his footwork, but I am confident that spending time with Bill Muir will go a long way to taking care of that problem. When you can bring that sort of size to the table, I’ll take my chances late in the fifth or sixth round.
It doesn’t hurt that, like Jenkins, Hairston was honored as a permanent team captain in January.
A third name that intrigues me, but for very different reasons is WR Xavier Dye. He is a year removed from his best season and even that was only 14 catches for 236 yards and three touchdowns. The reason he stands out is because of his raw physical talents.
Any time you have a receiver that is nearly 6’5″ and 210, but runs a 4.4 (would have placed fourth at the combine among WRs) flat in the 40 yard dash you need to take notice. As we’ve seen in the past, size/speed combo alone does not make an NFL player, though it makes it a lot easier to take a flier in free agency (whenever that may be).
Dye wasn’t honored as a permanent captain, but he did win Clemson’s Spiritual Leadership Award.