Stanford Football Pro Day becoming reunion of NFL stars and league brass

STANFORD, Calif. (KGO) -- Stanford Football Pro Day is a time for NFL scouts, coaches and management to assess the upcoming talent ahead of the NFL Draft.

But on the Farm, it has also become a reunion of some of the top NFL evaluators and former Cardinal-turned-pro.



"Those are my brothers out there. Any success that they have, I feel it and vice versa. Just to have them there hyping me up was great. Some of them were even coaching me like, 'I think you should do this or that'. I listened because I know they have the best interest in me. Just having them around and hyping me up was definitely a great feeling," Stanford Wide Receiver JJ Arcega-Whiteside said.

The former players like Christian McCaffrey, Solomon Thomas and others help motive the stars of tomorrow on a day that could weigh in on whether or not they make the next step in their careers.



"It definitely feels like a job interview, but at the end of the day it's just football. As soon as I stepped on the field, it was like no one was there. It was just me, Keller, Jesse and Kaden and we were just playing pitch and catch," Arcega-Whiteside said.



"The transition of becoming a professional is fun. I'm no longer a college student so you spend time on your body and your craft. The Senior Bowl was fun, but it has just been great to compete. The Senior Bowl, you compete against some of the best guys in the nation. In the combine, you compete with freaks. Then last day on the Stanford field, I get to compete with my brothers. It has been a fun process," Stanford Linebacker Bobby Okereke said.

One player not participating in the Pro Day, is one of the greatest players in Stanford Football history.

An injury held running back Bryce Love back from competing. But he is still proud of the work his teammates did.

"It's definitely tough, but at the end of the day the guys that were out there did an amazing job. All the work that they put in during our time at Stanford and the work that they did to prep is all coming together and they looked well," Stanford Running Back Bryce Love said.

The Pro Day isn't just a reunion of former players, it has become a who's who in the NFL world as well.



This includes San Francisco 49ers General Manager John Lynch and Head Coach Kyle Shanahan, as well as Oakland Raiders new General Manager Mike Mayock.

These big names all here possibly looking to add stars from Stanford to their roster.

"They have a lot of great football players here. They built a program that we can all be proud of and it has produced a lot of top-flight NFL players. It's a great visit every year and an easy one for us, but one we're always glad to make. It was well-attended as well it should have been," 49ers General Manager John Lynch said.

As more and more Stanford players go on to have successful careers in the league like Andrew Luck and Christian McCaffrey, the bigger this event grows.

Stanford Head Coach David Shaw believes it all starts with creating great people and turning them into great athletes as well.

"If we do what we want to do, which is recruit the best and the brightest, great athletes who are great students and great people, when their time is up, a lot of people are going to want them. A lot of companies are going to want to hire them, some may start their own companies and a lot of NFL teams are going to want them to. As long as we do that, these days will continue to be big," Coach Shaw said.
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