Towson Pro Day Attracts Ravens' Attention

Towson University's Unitas Stadium looked like a scouting convention Wednesday afternoon.

Representatives from 23 NFL teams attended the school's pro day to get a closer look at the Tigers' NFL hopefuls, particularly pass rusher Ryan Delaire and cornerback Tye Smith. Even Ravens Head Coach John Harbaugh made the trip across town.

"It means a lot," Smith said of the attendance. "I feel like our program is on the rise with a lot of players coming in who want to be in the NFL. Our coaches are helping them develop to be in the NFL, and also to be great people while they're here at Towson."

Delaire attracted much of the attention from the NFL personnel. The pass rusher was a third-team All-American last year after collecting 11 sacks. He recorded 22.5 over the last two years.

He told reporters at the combine in February that he views himself as an "elite pass rusher" in this year's draft class, and he wanted to back that up with a strong showing Wednesday.

Delaire's combine workout was cut short because of a pulled groin, but he bounced back with an improved performance at Towson where he completed every drill. 

"I felt really comfortable about today," Delaire said. "I was healed and my body felt really good, so I felt like I had a day to show out."

Delaire, a projected mid-to-late round pick, spent a few minutes after the workout chatting with Harbaugh on the sideline.

"We were just talking about being dedicated to the game," Delaire said. "As far as whatever position a team wants me to play, I have to perform and do it."

The goal for both Delaire and Smith was to show the NFL scouts an improved speed from what they ran at the combine. Delaire was hobbled by the groin when he clocked a 4.97-second 40-yard dash, and Smith ran a 4.60.

Performance times aren't released at pro days, but both prospects were pleased with how they ran.

"I'm way, way faster than the 4.6 I put up at the combine," Smith said. "I got my body at a weight that it wants to be at, instead of forcing it at a weight of 195 that wasn't comfortable for me. I feel like 185-188 is the most comfortable. I feel like it was way faster."

Smith is a* *projected late-round pick after starting for Towson the last three years, where he had six interceptions, six forced fumbles and 25 passes defensed.

"I just want a shot," Smith said. "I want one team to give me an opportunity to go out there and play football."

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