It is always the most awkward of Pro Day rituals, when the hoard of NFL personnel gather before the day’s events.
As the coaches and scouts wait for the players to warm up in a quiet field house, they stand around and choose which one of them will actually run the Pro Day. Because while individual colleges can set up the event, an NFL employee has to run the drills.
Usually, after several minutes in hushed whispers, one person will emerge ready to count the bench press reps.
But for as odd as this practice can be — which is saying something in an event that is odd by design — it ended up laying the groundwork for BYU running back Tyler Allgeier to be drafted by the Atlanta Falcons.
Atlanta running back coach Michael Pitre drew the short straw to run Allgeier’s Pro Day this year in Provo. A month later, that unlikely relationship helped Allgeier to become the Falcons’ fifth-round pick.
“He ended up doing my Pro Day,” Allgeier said after he was drafted. “[After] that, I had a couple of calls and that was pretty much it. I thought it was pretty good. You really just don’t know what is going to happen [on draft day].”
Pitre and Allgeier had more in common than you would think. They share a hometown in a suburb of Los Angeles. Pitre also has experience working with former BYU running backs.
Allgeier, oddly enough, fit comfortably in the type of player Pitre was looking for. After spending time with the Chicago Bears and Oregon State, Pitre is used to coaching backs who can run downhill and seek contact. In his second season in Atlanta, he was looking to add some of that blueprint to the running backs room.
“I hope I can be their missing piece,” Allgeier said. “You won’t really know that until you get there.”
But half the battle is getting there. And for that, Allgeier can partly thank the weirdest of Pro Day traditions.
What we are watching:
• Former BYU wide reciever Samson Nacua is heading to the Indianapolis Colts. Why the fun-loving Nacua is treating it like his last chance.
• 25% of BYU’s women’s basketball team can’t partake in NIL. What has the last year been like through their eyes?
• Two women’s basketball players signed professional contracts.