By now, it has become very clear that the coronavirus pandemic has brought many things to a screeching halt, including pro days. However, some athletes have not allowed this to be a road block in their pursuit of an NFL career. Recently, Tua Tagovailoa posted videos of his progression from his comeback journey after sustaining a horrendous hip injury months ago. It seems that other athletes are following Tagovailoa’s lead. One of those is his former teammate, safety/cornerback Jared Mayden. The NFL-hopeful has taken to Twitter, posting a series of clips entitled “No Pro Day, No Problem”.
In these clips, he gives an in depth showcase of his skillset at a local football field with aspirations of being noticed by NFL scouts, coaches, GMs, etc. Instead of sitting back, Mayden has taken the initiative of bringing the Pro Day to the pros. While his work this past season for the Crimson Tide was quite impressive (59 tackles, 3 pass deflections, and 4 INTs), it’s the intangibles that often sell a player in the decision makers’ eyes. These videos are his way of providing virtual resumes to NFL franchises.
Jared Mayden hoped to showcase his speed at now-canceled pro day— Charlie Potter (@Charlie_Potter) March 27, 2020
"Not being able to showcase that, it definitely is detrimental as it relates to his evaluation. I tell guys all the time, 'Walmart doesn't sell the kind of speed that he possesses.'"https://t.co/XRjLwAttC5 pic.twitter.com/exM7JKzZpa
Currently, Mayden has a draft projection of 2nd-3rd round. Along with timing at a 4.47 40-yard dash, his versatility is proving to be his greatest asset. “The more you can do on the back end, the longer you can have your career. It’s real important because it gives you the ability to show teams you don’t have to just go draft three corners to play corner or two safeties to play safety. You can save money and draft somebody like me. That’s something that teams look for, versatility guys. Guys that can put their hat on and just go anywhere,” Mayden said. He’s a “do everything” guy on the back end of the defense, which is a coach’s dream. It’s not that he can be plugged anywhere and do “okay”. Jared can play any position and own what he is doing.
Sunday Funday 😎 pic.twitter.com/4kou5dHAQ9— Jared mayden (@maydenII) March 29, 2020
Along with his versatility, Jared Mayden has uncanny anticipation and great recognition. He’s able to position himself well, no matter what the coverage. One of his biggest strengths has been his ability to communicate and by doing so, be an effective leader. Mayden plays with sound technique and excels in fundamentals. These qualities and being a real student of the game have caught the interest of those seeking his employment. Mayden agrees with that assessment. “The way I prepare for practices, showing I’m coachable when I mess up. And then my overall mentality on how I approach the game, how I get to the ball, how I encourage others and how loud I am on the field vocally. Those are all things that I want teams to take away and to remember me when they’ve got to go back and make their own decision.”
So, how else can Jared Mayden’s videos be of benefit? It can disprove negative evaluations given to him. Before launching his series of clips, cons associated with him were that he lacked explosiveness, couldn’t play single-high by himself, and has limited range. However, within seconds of any clip playing, that “fake news” is destroyed. Unless a viewer has a serious visual impairment, it easy to see that Mayden’s explosiveness cannot be questioned. His movements are very fluid. In addition, he can change direction on a dime without sacrificing speed.
Jared Mayden is taking the stage online to show why he’s worthy of a high draft selection. While others may be relaxing, he’s grinding. Pro Days may have been cancelled, but Jared’s NFL dream continues. Others may likely follow his lead. If they are wise, they will. While we’re being told to practice social distancing, Mayden, with his videos is about to get up close and personal with the NFL. Get ready to witness the league’s next star.
I am a 2003 graduate from the University of Alabama with a degree in Exercise Science. While at the Capstone, I served as a student assistant with the head strength and conditioning coach of the Crimson Tide football team. I have competed in both powerlifting and bodybuilding for several years. In addition, I have served athletes and people through the arena of personal training. Jesus is my Lord and Savior. I am a passionate fan of Alabama, but do not make other fan bases miserable because of it. College football has my heart first, but I cover all areas of sports. Follow me on Twitter: @justinriley7!