Tuesday, September 2, 2014 · 12:17 a.m.
Print
Jacques Smith works out at Tennessee's Pro Day on Wednesday. (Photo: Reed Carringer)

KNOXVILLE – Former Tennessee defensive end and Ooltewah native Jacques Smith took off his orange and white uniform for the last time after Tennessee knocked off Kentucky in the 2013 season finale.

But Wednesday morning he got one more chance to have his name on the back of Tennessee gear – a final opportunity to work side-by-side with teammates on the campus where he played four year as he participated in Tennessee’s annual Pro Day with all 32 NFL teams represented.

“After all that hard work and preparation, it was finally just a day to show it and I got to display that today,” Smith said. “This is our last hour of being a Vol. This completes the process of college football for us. We’re heading for a new phase. It’s a blessing, but it’s strange at the same time. Four years go by fast.”

Unlike some of his teammates that are all but certain to be picked when the NFL Draft rolls around on May 8, Smith is fighting for his football life. He isn't found in many mock drafts. He wasn’t invited to the NFL Combine in February. He’s what many analysts consider to be a Round 7-FA prospect, meaning he has a chance to sneak into the draft, but there’s a decent chance he’ll have to settle for a free-agent contract.

Jacques Smith goes through D-line drills at Tennessee's Pro Day. (Photo: Reed Carringer)

That’s why Smith is doing all he can to make himself valuable. He worked out as a defensive end and linebacker on Wednesday. He’s gained 20 pounds since the end of the season, up to 258 pounds. His workout routine – which consisted of 3-4 hours of lifting and running per day over the past few months – was evident on Wednesday.

Smith ran a 4.9 second 40-yard dash, had a vertical jump of 36.5 inches, a broad jump of 10'3" and benched 225 pounds 27 times.

“Whatever teams need, I’m trying to be that,” he said. “If it’s a defensive end, if it’s an outside linebacker, if it’s a rush specialist, if it’s a special team(er), whatever it is to get on the field. I want to go out and do it and give my best effort.”

Smith admits that he doesn’t know what the NFL Draft weekend will look like for him. It might be a long weekend with no calls. It could be waiting until it’s over and finding the best free-agent fit. Or maybe there’s a surprise in store and a team will take a chance on him.

He’s just trying to focus on the process.

“There’s a point in time where those questions get answered – May 8,” he said. “I’m just going to keep putting my head down and working and grinding and doing all the things that Coach [Butch] Jones and all my other coaches have taught me. You can’t worry about the results, you just have to do what you can to change those results and if I’m working and giving my best effort every day, I’d say I have a pretty good shot.”

Tennessee Pro Day results

Alex Bullard

6-3 ¼, 326 pounds

225-pound bench press reps : 31

Broad jump: 7’5”

Vertical jump: 24 inches

Best 40-yard dash time: 5.64

 

J.R. Carr

5-8 7/8, 231 pounds

Bench: 21

Broad jump: 8’4”

Vertical jump: 24 inches

Best 40: 5.22

 

Maurice Couch

6-1 1/2, 323 pounds

Bench: 31

Broad jump: 7’10”

Vertical jump: 23 inches

Best 40: 5.32

 

Zach Fulton

6-4 5/8, 319 pounds

Bench: DNP

Broad jump: DNP

Vertical jump: DNP

Best 40: DNP

 

Ja’Wuan James

6-6 1/8, 311 pounds

Bench: DNP

Broad jump: DNP

Vertical jump: DNP

Best 40: DNP

 

Daniel McCullers

6-6 7/8, 348 pounds

Bench: 27

Broad jump: 8’3”

Vertical jump: 23 inches

Best 40: 5.32

 

Corey Miller

6-2 3/4, 258 pounds

Bench: 33

Broad jump: DNP

Vertical jump: DNP

Best 40: DNP

 

Rajion Neal

5-11 1/8, 220 pounds

Bench: 28

Broad jump: 9’11”

Vertical jump: 38 inches

Best 40: 4.5

 

Michael Palardy

5-11 ¼, 191 pounds

Bench: DNP

Broad jump: DNP

Vertical jump: DNP

Best 40: 4.64

 

Tiny Richardson

6-5 7/8, 326 pounds

Bench: DNP

Broad jump: 9’4”

Vertical jump: 31 inches

Best 40: DNP

 

Dontavis Sapp

6-2 1/2, 234 pounds

Bench: 25

Broad jump: 9’10”

Vertical jump: 30 inches

Best 40: 4.69

 

Jacques Smith

6-1 7/8, 258 pounds

Bench: 27

Broad jump: 10’7”

Vertical jump: 36.5 inches

Best 40: 4.9

 

James Stone

6-3 3/8, 311 pounds

Bench: DNP

Broad jump: DNP

Vertical jump: DNP

Best 40: DNP

 

Marlon Walls

6-1 5/8, 272 pounds

Bench: 21

Broad jump: 9’3”

Vertical jump: 27 inches

Best 40: 5.07

Daniel Lewis covers Tennessee athletics for Nooga.com. Follow him on Twitter @DanielNooga

Print
Reader's Recap
Daily news delivered directly to your inbox.   sign up
Press Esc to close