BOWLING GREEN — Chris Jones was so nervous Tuesday morning, he didn’t eat breakfast.
For the 302-pounder, who played defensive tackle on the Bowling Green State University football team the last four seasons, that was news.
“I don’t know [the last time that happened] — nothing usually keeps me from eating,” Jones said with a laugh.
But the biggest news Tuesday was that Jones performed well at the Falcons’ Pro Day. Scouts from 24 NFL teams were in Bowling Green to watch Jones and several recent BG graduates get times and tested in hopes of getting drafted in April, or at least get signed as a free agent.
For Jones, the biggest question was whether he could improve upon his 5.3 time in the 40-yard dash set at the NFL combine in February. His time was the slowest among defensive linemen at that event.
“I was told that I really helped myself in the 40,” said Jones, who covered the distance in 5.0 and 5.19 seconds. “That’s what I really wanted to do: I wanted to show them I could run faster than I did at the combine.
“I also wanted to show them I had some explosiveness with the jumps, and I wanted to do well in the position drills.”
Jones, running back John Pettigrew, offensive lineman Jordon Roussos, and linebacker Dwayne Woods were joined by former Falcon Diyral Briggs in performing for the scouts. The group lifted weights, and they were measured in the broad jump and vertical jump before getting timed and going through position drills at Perry Field House.
But Jones said the goal for he and his teammates wasn’t to post fast times or long distances; it was to convince NFL talent sleuths to watch film and judge whether the Brownsburg, Ind., native, who ranks among the top players on nearly every draft board, or one of his teammates is one of the lucky players to hear his name called on draft day.
“The film doesn’t lie,” Jones said. “It shows what you do on every play, and it shows every detail.
“Hopefully the film will show them I can play.”