The grapevine bears good news for Timon Parris. The Floral Park native “has heard” that, if he’s healthy, he’ll be selected in next month’s NFL Draft. That will be an accomplishment on it’s own, as it would make the offensive lineman the first player drafted out of Stony Brook.
Now, for that pesky healthy part.
Parris broke his leg in October, an injury that limited him to only the bench press at the NFL Combine earlier this month and prevented him from participating in drills.
But, Parris wasn’t going to miss another chance to work out in front of NFL scouts. He participated in drills and believes he acquitted himself well at Stony Brook’s pro day at the All-Star Arena in Coram Monday morning.
“It was good,” Parris said. “I did OK. I wasn’t where I wanted to be, but all things considered, coming back from injury, I think I did all right.”
Parris estimated he’s operating at about 85-90 percent of his full potential and expects to be at 100 percent in another month.
“I really wasn’t hampered by it. I just wasn’t my full strength,” Parris said of his performance Monday. “I wasn’t able to explode out as I wanted to and be myself.”
All 32 NFL teams were in attendance to watch participants from Stony Brook, LIU Post, the University of Massachusetts, and the University of Rhode Island make their case to make a pro roster, whether it be through the draft or the free agency period that follows.
“I know how the system goes,” said Ray Bolden, who stands 5-9 and played wide receiver at Stony Brook. “I’m a small school guy, undersized. I was very productive but I know how it goes. I’ll probably be a top free agent. I wouldn’t be surprised if I don’t get a call after the draft. I know it’s going to be a climb that I have to make.”
Along with his skill, Bolden was another Stony Brook product trying to prove he’s healthy. He broke his foot in the regular-season finale against Maine and missed both of the Seawolves playoff games. He wears a special support device in his cleat, without which he claims he’d be operating with about 75 percent of his usual ability.
Bolden, who caught nine touchdowns last season, performed well enough to draw interest from the Falcons, Broncos, and Titans, as well as getting an invite to participate in local workouts with the Jets and Giants, he said.
“They like the smoothness in my route running and my ability to change direction,” Bolden said. “That’s what I expected to hear. That’s what I take pride in. They definitely like my quickness, the way I caught the ball, and things like that.”
Mastic Beach native and Floyd High School product Stacey Bedell said he was also invited to the Giants and Jets’ local workouts. Bedell flashed his versatility Monday morning, catching passes in the slot for the first time in the running back’s career.
“Scouts like my speed, but my agent was telling me that a lot of scouts wanted to see how I caught the ball out of the backfield,” Bedell said. “I did a good job of that today of running routes . . . Now, as a running back, you have to be able to catch the ball out of the backfield, line up in the slot, and run the ball.”