Eight pro prospects from USC football will participate at the 2017 NFL Combine in Indianapolis beginning on February 28.
The official list of participants for the 2017 NFL Combine was released on Wednesday, featuring USC football players Zach Banner, Justin Davis, Adoree’ Jackson, Damien Mama, Darreus Rogers, JuJu Smith-Schuster, Stevie Tu’ikolovatu and Chad Wheeler.
The eight Trojans will be tested at the Combine in Indianapolis beginning on February 28 through March 6.
USC is tied with Utah with the most representatives from the Pac-12.
Undoubtedly, Jackson and Smith-Schuster headline the Trojan representatives. The cornerback and wide receiver are each looking to up their draft stock with an impressive showing potentially boosting them into a first round selection.
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Jackson won the Thorpe Award as the nation’s top defensive back in 2016, but there are questions he’ll need to answer about his technical ability at cornerback while his exceptional athleticism could light up some eyes.
Smith-Schuster didn’t manage to reach the heights of his sophomore season at receiver, but could still show scouts his full potential when healthy.
Mid-round prospects like Banner, Mama and Wheeler could also use a big showing to shore up their selection range. The three offensive linemen provided the foundation for USC’s stellar run in 2016 as a unit, but as individuals they will need to show their worth to scouts.
Banner’s size is mouth-watering but scouts wonder if it could be a limiting factor while Mama and Wheeler were solid players but their NFL ceiling is in question.
Meanwhile, the trio of players with fringe draft potential — Davis, Rogers and Tu’ikolovatu — have a huge opportunity to turn some heads at the Combine in their bid to hear their names called on draft day.
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Davis missed the East-West Shrine Bowl because of his injured ankle but should be healed up in time to participate at the Combine. Rogers and Tu’ikolovatu are hoping the momentum of their late-blooming careers will be enough to convince scouts they’re worth a pick.
Trojans who didn’t nab an invite include safety Leon McQuay III, tight end Taylor McNamara and linebacker Michael Hutchings. They’ll have to wait until USC’s Pro Day to get in front of NFL scouts.
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USC sent seven players to the Combine, but only four of them were drafted. Su’a Cravens went in the second round to the Washington Redskins while Cody Kessler and Max Tuerk were both off the board in the third to the Cleveland Browns and then-San Diego Chargers respectively.. Kevon Seymour snuck in at the sixth round to the Buffalo Bills.