VIDEO: Penn State NFL Pro Day

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By Arielle Sargent, GoPSUSports.com

2017 Pro Day Central (Results)

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Lasch Football Building and Holuba Hall were bustling this afternoon as 11 Nittany Lions participated in Penn State's 2017 Pro Day. 

The annual event features both mental and physical testing, designed to give representatives from a variety of NFL teams a closer look at the Nittany Lions, all in anticipation for the 2017 NFL Draft slated for Thursday, April 27 through Saturday, April 29 in Philadelphia.

Today's itinerary kicked off with Wonderlic testing to start the morning. Other items for the day included meetings and interviews with scouts and NFL personnel as well as height, weight, hand and arm measurements.

On the physical side of things, testing included a 225-pound bench as well as broad and vertical jumps. Agility testing featured the 40-yard dash, shuttle and the L cone drill among individual workouts.

Catch up with a few of the Nittany Lions following their Pro Day performances for updates on the day as well as look at some preparation leading up to the highly anticipated day. 

Chris Godwin, wide receiver
Coming off a standout performance at the NFL Combine, Godwin noted that the success in Indianapolis provided some momentum headed into Pro Day. 

"It gave me a lot of confidence because there was that validation that I could really play with the best guys in the country," Godwin said, looking back on his combine experience.  "My numbers really stood up to all of theirs so it gave me a lot of confidence moving forward." 

Godwin also relied on teammates and coaches for mental and physical preparation, having declared for the draft just after the Rose Bowl. 

"They really helped me, whether it was on the field getting me ready to perform as far as routes or in the classroom just what to expect," Godwin said.


Evan Schwan, defensive end
After earning a spot in the starting lineup, Schwan completed his senior senior on a high note, earning All-Big Ten third team honors by the conference coaches and media. Immediately following the Rose Bowl, Schwan and Brian Gaia headed to Tampa, Florida to begin a grueling training session leading up to pro day. 

"Training with some NFL vets was really cool, kind of getting their opinion on everything, what to do, what not to do, preparing for the next level," Schwan said. "It was a lot of hard work. A lot of days waking up really early, trying to get to bed as early as possible, trying to get as much sleep, a lot of hard work and some of the hardest workouts I've ever done and I feel like that paid off today."


Brian Gaia, offensive line
Along with training with Schwan, Brian Gaia also relied on the support of the Nittany Lion coaching staff for Pro Day preparations.

"I think I hit my numbers, got what I wanted to and everything," Gaia said. "I think coach Limegrover and all the other coaches do a really good job making sure we have the football stuff down and then the running stuff we learn as we go."


Brandon Bell, linebacker
Brandon Bell also hit the Sunshine State for his Pro Day preparation, channeling months of hard work into just single day of work.

"I feel like it went well, I definitely accomplished what I wanted to, I put in a lot of work from the last few months into one day so it felt good," Bell said.


Garrett Sickels, defensive end

Also coming off an appearance at the NFL Combine, Sickels utilized pro day as an opportunity to regroup from the experience, capitalizing on a second look. Along with Godwin, Sickels opted to forgo his final year of eligibility with Penn State to enter the NFL Draft.

"During the Combine I just felt I wasn't myself and didn't perform the way I wanted to," Sickels said. "Leading up to today I just needed to relax and do everything I was taught, and I was able to do that."




Malik Golden, safety
Concluding his final season in the Blue and White, Golden took things from each position coach throughout his time as Nittany Lion in preparation for his Pro Day debut. 

"It was a lot of nerves, I didn't really sleep that well last night, but I'm happy with the results," Golden said. "You always feel like you can do better but I'm proud of where I stand right now."


Nyeem Wartman-White, linebacker
After an injury sidelined Wartman-White for the remaining 11 games of the season, Wartman-White said that the best part of pro day might simply be participating.

"I was supposed to do the drills 55 to 75 percent and I think I did them around there, maybe higher," Wartman-White said.


Tyler Yazujian, long snapper
Earning back-to-back CoSIDA Academic All-America honors in his final two seasons for the Nittany Lions, Yazujian completed his career as Penn State's long snapper from 2014 through 2016 before making his pro day debut.

"Today went well," Yazujian said. "It was exciting to see all the seniors out here putting in all the work they've been doing the past couple months and putting on a show."

For Yazujian, Pro Day preparations meant getting leaner, stronger and faster along in addition to his usual snapping responsibilities.

"I was happy with my athletic tests," Yazujian said. "I showed I could move a little bit for a snapper. And then I snapped pretty well, so I'm pretty happy overall with today."

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