For the next four weeks, leading up to the NFL Draft, STACK will chronicle the journeys of several elite athletes comprising the 2011 draft class. From projected number-one selections to fast-rising prospects, all of these players share a common bond: they have proven themselves worthy of playing on the game's biggest stage.
Kicking off the series is top-ranked defensive prospect Da'Quan Bowers, whose skills were on display this morning during his Pro Day at Clemson.
Bowers' times were in line with top-performing d-linemen at the NFL Combine. His best times were 6.95 in the Three-Cone Drill and 4.34 in the 20-Yard Shuttle. But Bowers, a former number-one nationally-ranked high school recruit, knows that impressive test times are just a fraction of what he needs to accomplish to prove his value to NFL personnel.
"I'm going to bring an explosive pass rush," he says. "I feel like I can bring leadership from a young guy's perspective. I can give them that extra burst that they need on defense. They're going to get a hard worker.
"Being the number-one prospect for the Draft, that gives a guy every reason to brag and boast, but that's not the type of guy that I am. You've got keep working hard, and thank God for blessing me with the opportunity that I have."
In the video above, Bowers capitalizes on every opportunity presented to him, starting with Combine prep with Travelle Gaines, director of elite athlete development at Athletes' Performance.
Photo: German Alegria
Photo Credit: Getty Images // Thinkstock