Through the 2015 NFL Draft from April 30 to May 2 in Chicago, Illinois, Florida Gators offensive lineman Chaz Green will keep you up-to-date on his Path to the Draft with exclusive comprehensive blog entries here at OnlyGators.com.
Green checks in for the third time after visiting with four more NFL teams and participating in Pro Day on Tuesday in Gainesville, Florida.
Since the last time I checked in, the only non-football thing I’ve done that is really notable is met with a stylist in Ocala. My agent set up that appointment, and I’m excited to see what we come up with ahead of my visits and the draft.
On March 20, I met with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. They put me on the board in the meeting room for three hours to see how well I picked up installations – inside zone runs, outside zone runs. They showed me how they would block against 15 different fronts they see on a regular basis, and in order to evaluate whether I understood them, had me answer when they called out those specific fronts. When we got done, they gave me a test to see how much information I retained from the session. I think I did really well because I got some real good feedback from that workout.
I had a bit of a break after that meeting, so I just stayed up on my workouts in order to make sure I stayed best shape possible. We don’t have a whole lot of time left until the draft and everything runs together, so I’ve just been trying to work out and promote myself, too, keep my name out there as we go through the process.
Though I still haven’t had much contact with the new Gators coaching staff, I did run into Chris Rumph, the defensive line coach, in late March. We were talking in the weight room for a little bit, and he was messing with me, saying how they wanted me at Alabama during my recruitment. He definitely seemed like a really cool guy.
I had been spending a lot of time with D.J. Humphries and Andre Debose since returning to Gainesville. Kyle Christy is taking classes still, so he never left town while the other guys were working out across the state and country. Obviously everyone else came in for Pro Day this week and many of them will stick around until the draft.
Before Pro Day though, I had two more team meetings in Gainesville, and they came on back-to-back days on March 26 and 27.
Max Garcia and I met with the Houston Texans on March 26th. We spent about 45 minutes working out and did a lot of it inside the weight room because there was some weather in The Swamp. We had a nice 45-minute grind and then spent an hour – it was a little different than other teams – in the board room. Houston’s offensive line coach [Mike Devlin] didn’t teach us their schemes as much; he put on a lot of the things we did and we just explained our basic protections, basic run plays, why we did certain things that he saw us do on film. He wanted to know if it was something we were coached to do or something we picked up naturally. Devlin, I liked him a lot. He’s a real down-to-Earth guy. He just spoke to us about the whole process in general, what to expect at the next level. We went to lunch and had a great visit overall.
That night, I went to dinner with Frank Pollack, the Dallas Cowboys’ offensive line coach. The next day, we had the longest workout I’ve had to this point. Myself, D.J. and Max were out there, and we were probably out on the field for two hours. We spent the first 45 minutes doing a lot of agility drills, flexibility drills; he wanted to see how we could move as athletes. We did bag drills, foot quickness drills, and then the last half was straight football. We covered everything as far as blocking, pulling, pass protection, changing direction, hip explosion, balance, strength. That was another great grind, and then we watched some film as well. We spent another hour and a half on one protection that they run, one of their main protections. We were in there grinding for a good hour and a half as well, so it was a long day.
One thing that’s great about these meetings is that I am learning a lot about football. Every team teaches the same thing in different ways and every team has a different twist to the game of football. What’s interesting, from all these different coaches, is learning these different techniques. That’s one thing the coach from the Texans showed me – how to change my feet up a little bit on certain pass plays and certain run plays – but he noted that every team may say something completely different even though the end result might be the same.
On Monday, I had two more visit before Pro Day as the New Orleans Saints wanted to meet me for breakfast while they were in town. One of their assistant offensive line coaches wanted to get a feel for me. He had already seen me on film, so we talked through some base plays, my technique and how I think on the field. For dinner, I met with the San Diego Chargers and offensive line coach Joe D’Alessandris. We did some board work for a good two hours, the same thing as before, going over how they call their plays and how I retained the information installation.
Coming out of all these workouts and interviews, it is unanimous from the coaches that [Florida offensive line coach] Mike Summers prepared us tremendously. That’s some feedback we’re getting from the next level. From a technique standpoint on the field and also a mental standpoint in the game of football, guys from the next level say we’re really well prepared and that’s a credit to Coach Summers, everything he taught us. I feel like we’re very prepared for this process.
Going into Pro Day on Tuesday, I had decided beforehand only to do on-field drills. I felt great going in, and it was nice to see all my boys out there, guys I haven’t seen in a while. Having all those guys out there for one last go-around in The Swamp was great.
We did our standard position drills but wound up being worked longer because there were about 15 offensive line coaches on the field, so I was told we as an offensive line group worked nearly a half hour more than normal. There was a really good turnout for everyone, which definitely gave us extra energy.
I feel like I did well on the drills overall. Obviously there are some drills you wish you could have back. I had some early jitters, obviously, but I feel like I showed everything I needed to show. Overall, it was a great experience to be in The Swamp and on the field one last time.
The memories I had with my brothers in that locker room and running out of the tunnel in The Swamp flashed back to me while I was there. Those are incredible moments in my life. And let me tell you, the coaches that were there understand what it is all about. I saw coaches standing around taking selfies – I’m not going to throw any names out – but they all realize how unique of a place it is.
I’ll be flying out Wednesday morning for a top-30 visit with Dallas, which I’m confident means they liked what they saw when we met last month because teams only get to bring out 30 guys for all-expenses-paid visits. I’ll spend the day with them and then fly out on Thursday to New York to meet with the Buffalo Bills for a job interview.
From what I’ve heard, I’ll meet all the staff again, the trainers, they’ll check me out [medically] one more time. I’ll meet with the coach, they’ll put me on the board and test me to see how I learn and whether I can fit in with their systems. The visits are usually pretty standard, from what I understand. They want to get a feel for who you are and what they would be getting while showing you what they’re all about as a franchise.
From there, I expect to return to Gainesville, and I’ll catch the spring game on Saturday, but I should be right back on the road again after that as I’m supposed to visit with the Baltimore Ravens and Atlanta Falcons before going to Tampa on April 15.
Overall, I’m just trying to stay positive, remain confident and put my best foot forward. My goal is to leave a lasting impression with the coaches I meet so I stick in their minds on draft day.