LaRoy Reynolds, garbed in spandex and a Dri-Fit top he would later remove, lunged hard from a marked spot inside the McCue Center weight room and landed softly with the heels of his Nikes meeting the measuring tape of an NFL scout.
“10-5,” announced the scout.
“I came to eat!,” Reynolds shouted. “Let’s go!”
And he went all afternoon.
The standout at Virginia’s Pro Day was the chiseled linebacker who wasn’t selected to any postseason all-star games, nor did he get much consideration for the NFL Combine.
Tuesday was Reynolds’ big chance to shine and he, well, ate.
“Just with everything,” said Reynolds, still with sweat dripping from his face, “working so hard in the season, in the offseason, my only mindset was just to eat.
“That’s the only thing I could think of at the time. I got to eat.”
Which he did with a 10-foot-5 broad jump, a 37-inch vertical leap, 28 reps of 225 pounds and an unofficial hand-timed 40-yard dash in the 4.55-4.59-second range.
For the most part, these were numbers he had never personally delivered. Not during his training sessions in Florida nor Virginia Beach.
“[The numbers] were a lot better,” Reynolds said. “I came out here with a lot of energy. With my teammates being behind me, I just felt the extra energy to finish strong and do everything to the best of my ability.”
Reynolds said he set personal records, specifically, in the bench reps, broad jump and vertical leap.
Some of the 23 scouts in attendance (from 21 teams, including the Washington Redskins) stayed after the timed events to watch Reynolds run routes and catch passes.
At UVa, Reynolds was a 6-foot-2, 230-pound weak-side linebacker who made 250 career tackles. In the NFL, can he find his niche as a fullback?
“I just want to play and succeed at the next level,” he said. “Show people I have the ability to play with a lot of guys on Sunday.”
Mike London said he can do it.
“He’s 13 pounds heavier,” said the UVa head coach, comparing Reynolds’ weight to that when he was a Cavalier. “He ran a great 40 time. His movement times were well. He’s out there catching the ball. I saw him with a one-handed catch, coming out of the backfield as a fullback. So he’s showing some versatility.”
And showing that, perhaps, he was snubbed when it came to making the cut for all-star games.
“It happens — politics and everything,” Reynolds said. “Fortunately, I was able to just come out here and do the best I could do. Congrats to all the guys that did get invited [to all-star games], but I feel like I did the best I could today.”
Improvement day for Oday
Oday Aboushi was back on familiar ground on Tuesday — and it showed.
The All-ACC offensive tackle, who projects to go in the NFL Draft’s first three rounds, improved at least his bench press and 40-time from the results he posted at February’s NFL Combine.
Aboushi put up 21 reps of 225 and had an unofficial hand-timed 40 in the 5.3-second range. In Indianapolis, he put up 17 reps of 225 and had a 40 of 5.45 seconds.
“I didn’t put up the numbers I wanted to [at the Combine],” Aboushi said. “The schedule was a little rough on me. I didn’t bench as well as I thought I was going to do. ... I could kind of redeem myself at Pro Day. I definitely had something to prove at Pro Day.”