Without an invite to the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, San Benito High and Gavilan College graduate Wade Jacobson knew that his best chance of making a mark would be at his pro day on March 7 in Pullman, Wash. And after eight weeks of training in Utah, Jacobson did just that.
The two-year starter at Washington State eclipsed some of the best prospects' numbers from the February combine, and he even set a record for a lineman in the vertical jump.
Despite the pressure, Jacobson went into pro day relaxed, he said.
“Going into it I did the same thing I did at my JC combine,” Jacobson said. “I took the same approach. I was excited but not too excited. I was calm and I blew it away.”
Listed at 6-5 and 305 pounds, Jacobson broke a national record in the vertical leap, reaching 38 inches. It was nearly 4 inches more than the top mark at the combine set by Terron Armstead of Arkansas Pine-Bluff (34.5). In the 20-yard shuffle, Jacobson finished in 4.3 seconds – better than any time at the combine. His broad jump also impressed scouts. Jacobson jumped 9-6, which would have placed third at the combine.
In the three-cone drill, Jacobson was timed at 7.6 seconds, which would have tied for 12th among linemen at the combine. In the 40-yard dash, Jacobson recorded times of 4.99 and 5.06 seconds. Both times were among the top 10 of the combine linemen.
In his last event, Jacobson benched 225 pounds 24 times.
In a review of the pro day on NFL.com, Gil Brant described Jacobson as “the kind of player teams are looking for to populate a practice squad and allow to develop over time.”
Overall, Jacobson was proud of what he accomplished, he said.
“It was very good to see the looks on all the scouts' faces,” Jacobson said. “So many people doubted me. I was told I wouldn’t be able to do it. But I did it. Overall, I’m very pleased with it.”
Because of his impressive showing, Jacobson has already seen an increase in scouts’ attention. Every day he fields questions from scouts from all over the NFL, he said.
“After I jumped, that’s what got the scouts' attention,” Jacobson said. “They started to look at all my numbers, and as soon as it was over, I had a private workout with four or five scouts.”
Despite the good showing, his work isn’t complete just yet. On Friday, Jacobson will travel back to Hollister to continue his training, he said. As he trains, his agent will continue to set up private workouts with NFL teams.
“There are a handful of them,” he said. “I’m really looking forward to it.”
But he doesn’t have an idea where he will fall in the draft, he said.
“It’s too early right now,” he said. “It’s really a crap-shoot.”
The NFL Draft begins on April 25 in New York. It continues until April 27.