COLUMBUS, Ohio — Ohio State's annual Pro Day is a can't-miss event for teams across the league, and ClevelandBrowns.com was on site Thursday afternoon at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.
Here are five things to know.
- Malik Hooker watched in sweats as his teammates performed in front of all 32 NFL teams with roughly a month before the draft
Hooker, the ball-hawking safety widely viewed as one of the best players in the year's class, said he's itching to get back on the field after a January surgery to repair two sports hernias and a torn labrum in his left hip.
"It's just more so anxious, just being anxious to get back out there and show everybody that I am who I am on film," he said, "but that's just more (of what it is), just competing. I haven't ran since the Clemson game in January."
Hooker, who said at the Combine he hopes to be ready by rookie minicamp, said he started running in the pool this week and did some light on-field work.
"I'm ahead of schedule," he said. "From here on out, it's more just getting my legs under me."
Hooker, who is projected to be a top-10 pick, led the Buckeyes with seven interceptions in his first season as a starter.
- Speaking of potential top-10 picks, cornerback Marshon Lattimore wants the record to show he did not, in fact, pull his hamstring at the Combine earlier this month.
"They didn't even know what was going on," Lattimore said, referencing media reports that he sustained an injury during the 40-yard dash in Indianapolis. "I didn't grab my hamstring or anything like that, they just thought it was my hamstring."
Indeed, Lattimore — who battled chronic hamstring issues in college — said he's feeling good and proved as much during Thursday's on-field drills.
Lattimore, who clocked a 4.36-second 40 at the combine, said he suffered an insignificant hip flexor injury.
"It is what it is, but I'm good," he said. "I had to show them — that's another reason I had to come out here — show them (that I was fine) … I wanted to clear it up, it is what it is."
- Just like he did at the Combine, Pat Elflein worked at both center and guard as he tried to show teams he can play wherever they need him.
"I'm still doing both, they have film on both," said Elflein, a three-year starter who switched to center this past season.
To be sure, the 2016 Rimington Trophy winner (given annually to the nation's best center) and Pickerington, Ohio, native said he doesn't much care where he plays at the next level.
"As long as I get on the field," he said. "Whatever it is, as long as I get a job somewhere."
Elflein is considered one of the better offensive linemen in this year's draft class and is projected as a second or third-round pick.
- Curtis Samuel knew he was fast but he didn't know he was that fast.
Ohio State's do-everything H-Back said he was surprised when he found out he clocked a 4.31-second 40-yard dash at the Combine.
"I'm not gonna lie, I didn't expect that," he said, laughing. "My times trainig weren't 4.31 or 4.3s at all, but once I gave my body the proper time to rest and heal I could pull off something like that. I'm grateful."
Samuel, who is projected to play either wide receiver or running back at the next level, worked at both positions Thursday.
"I did a whole bunch of stuff today," he said. "I'm just trying to expand my role wherever teams want me."
- Ohio State middle linebacker Raekwon McMillan entered Pro Day with something of a chip on his shoulder, saying he wanted to dispel talk about his athleticism or alleged lack thereof.
"Everybody was saying I can't move, and that I'm not an athlete," said the former five-star recruit and three-year starter. "I came out here and moved."
That's true. The 6-foot-2, 240-pound McMillan clocked a 4.61-second 40-yard dash at the Combine and posted a 33-inch vertical and 121-inch broad jump Thursday.
"What else do you want from me?" he said with a smile. "That's the best I can do."