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Kuechly shines at BC's pro day

By Greg A. Bedard
Globe Staff / March 22, 2012
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The run to the draft for former Boston College linebacker Luke Kuechly took another step Wednesday as he put together an impressive performance at the school’s pro day in front of scouts.

“A lot of stuff I had done before, so it wasn’t anything too new,’’ Kuechly said. “I think overall it went pretty smoothly.’’

Kuechly stood on all of the numbers he posted at last month’s Scouting Combine in Indianapolis - including 4.58 seconds in the 40-yard dash and a 38-inch vertical jump - but ran through the positional drills.

The way Kuechly dropped in pass coverage was of high interest to NFL scouts because BC mostly uses zone drops.

“I haven’t done a whole lot of man coverage so I can’t tell people I’m off the charts with it,’’ said Kuechly, who weighed in at 243 pounds. “It’s one of those things where I think it’s a lot of technique work - we worked on it a little down in Florida, just different techniques - but I think it’s something I just have to just pick up on the fly.’’

Kuechly has been training at the IMG Academy in Sarasota, Fla., and the work paid off.

“He had a great workout,’’ said an AFC college scout. “He was fluid, showed terrific burst and acceleration. He was very, very impressive.’’

Kuechly is expected to go in the first round. The Philadelphia Eagles, who pick 15th, were in desperate need of a middle linebacker until they traded for DeMeco Ryans of the Texans Tuesday.

“One of my buddies told me that,’’ Kuechly said. “He’s a good player.’’

Even with Ryans in the fold, Philadelphia sent linebackers coach Mike Caldwell to the workout and he ran the linebacker drills.

Kuechly has predraft visits scheduled with the Panthers and Bengals.

“That’s the weird part right now, you really don’t know what your schedule is going to be,’’ Kuechly said. “I just found out that I’m going to be going back to Cincinnati on Saturday. You live it day by day and kind of see what they throw at you and see where it goes from there.

“I think when you’re playing, [where you’re drafted is] the last thing you think about. You have to go out and do what you’ve been doing forever and just let your body just take care of itself.’’

A total of 32 area players, including seven others from BC, worked out in front of scouts from 27 teams.

The Patriots had three representatives, including assistant director of college scouting Brian Smith. Offensive line coach Dante Scarnecchia ran the line drills.

Merrimack linebacker Shawn Loiseau ran a disappointing 40 time in the 4.8 range, which was similar to the 4.75 he posted at the Combine, and didn’t excel in the positional drills, according to the AFC scout.

One player who did open some eyes was UMass receiver Julian Talley. His vertical jump of 41 1/2 inches stood out and he drew some comparisons to Victor Cruz, the former UMass standout who is now starring for the Giants. Talley isn’t as quick as Cruz, but he has similar slot skills.

Greg A. Bedard can be reached at gbedard@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @gregabedard.

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