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2020 NFL Draft

What you should know from Ohio State's Pro Day extravaganza

COLUMBUS -- The Woody Hayes Athletic Center was apparently the hottest place to be Friday morning, as all 32 NFL teams gathered here for Ohio State's annual Pro Day.

"This is Ohio State, it's the atmosphere," said running back Ezekiel Elliott, who is considered by some as the top back in this year's draft class.

"(This is what happens) when you come to a place like this where you've got a lot of great guys competing. I think everyone came out and did a great job."

The Buckeyes featured 22 players working out — including Elliott, DE Joey Bosa, QB Cardale Jones, and WR Braxton Miller — for 125-plus league coaches, scouts, and other personnel while ESPN and the NFL Network held live broadcasts from the team's facility.

"It's life in the big city," Ohio State coach Urban Meyer said.

Indeed, the eyes of the NFL -- including the Browns, who sent executive vice president of football operations Sashi Brown and vice president of player personnel Andrew Berry -- were locked on Central Ohio this morning.

And Elliott, who rushed for 3,699 yards and 41 touchdowns in two seasons as a starter with the Buckeyes, said it seemed like things were coming full circle in Columbus.

"I remember walking in here and doing a little combine right when you get on campus trying to make your mark in front of the coaches," he said, "and now we're trying to make our mark in front of the pro coaches. It's crazy to see us come from there to now."

Bosa bolsters stock

Ohio State defensive end Joey Bosa is projected to be a first-round draft pick, and the All-American proved as much during the combine two weeks ago. On Friday morning, Bosa left little doubt to his status as one of the best players in this year's class.

Bosa improved his bench press from 24 repetitions of 225 pounds at the combine to 28 inside the team's weight room and cut his 40-yard dash time from 4.86 seconds to 4.78, according to the NFL Network's broadcast.

Bosa did not meet with reporters in Columbus but was confident of his ability in Indianapolis.

"I do believe I'm the best player in the draft. There's, of course, a lot of amazing players in the draft and it's going to be up to Tennessee to make that decision," he said, "but I think as a player if you don't believe that then there's kind of something wrong."

Bosa — whose 6-foot-5, 269-pound frame has given some teams reason to believe he can drop back in coverage — also participated drills where he did exactly that.

Bosa's family came from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., to watch him perform Friday morning. His younger brother, Nick (who will be a freshman defensive end for the Buckeyes in the fall) arrived wearing Tennessee clothing. The Titans hold the top overall pick in April.

Miller turns heads

At Ohio State, Braxton Miller became a star for his breakaway speed, fast feet and shifty spin moves that made him among the most electric players in college football.

So when Miller, the quarterback-turned-receiver, posted slower-than-expected times in the 40-yard dash at the NFL Combine, it left some analysts and experts scratching their heads.

That might have changed Friday morning, as the two-time Big Ten Player of the Year reportedly clocked unofficial times of 4.33 seconds and 4.36 in the 40.

And for Miller — who's still somewhat of a project at receiver considering he switched to the position less than a year ago — it should only improve his draft stock when added to an otherwise solid combine, where he showed elite agility in the 20-yard and 60-yard shuttles.

Jones shows off big arm

A hamstring injury kept Jones from throwing at the combine. And considering the quarterback's powerful arm might be his greatest asset as he tries to impress league coaches and scouts, a solid showing at Pro Day seemed to become all that more important.

But Jones — who guided the Buckeyes to a national title before being benched last season — played down that notion.

"The stakes are always going to be high," he said.

In any case, Jones looked sharp, throwing a combination of deep balls and shorter passes to show he has the tools to be a complete quarterback.

"I thought I'd have a B . I missed a couple passes. Guys were running some great routes and I had an overthrow and a couple of drops," he said.

And while the "script was really taking shots downfield," Jones added he wanted to show touch with his passes, a criticism that's nipped at Jones over the course of the past two seasons.

"That was one of my main focus points today," he said.

Thomas an option at No. 32?

Michael Thomas continues to establish himself as perhaps one of the best receivers in this year's draft class, reportedly running a sub-4.40 40-yard dash time after a 4.57 time at the combine.

Thomas, who was impressive in on-field drills Friday and in Indianapolis, is projected by some to be a first or second-round draft pick come April.

For the Browns -- who have the second and 32nd overall picks and are hoping to strengthen their receiving corps -- Thomas might be an intriguing option early in the second round, provided he's available.

"The Big Ten prepared me for the NFL, we won a national championship," Thomas said when asked if he was ready for the league. "I feel like it prepared me very well."

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