Andre Ellington states his case in workout for 20 NFL scouts

Former Clemson running back shakes off hamstring injury, runs 4.51 40-yard dash

Clemson running back Andre Ellington takes the handoff from offensive graduate assistant Joe Craddock as he runs a drill at a Pro-Timing Day workout on March 29th

Photo by Mark Crammer

Clemson running back Andre Ellington takes the handoff from offensive graduate assistant Joe Craddock as he runs a drill at a Pro-Timing Day workout on March 29th

Former Clemson running back Andre Ellington is confident that whatever comes his way next month, he'll make a smooth and successful transition to the NFL.

The past several weeks have been a bit stressful, however.

Ellington, who has been tabbed by many as one of the top five running back prospects in this year's draft, has been continually sidetracked in his efforts to impress NFL scouts.

Until Friday, that is.

Working out before scouts of nearly two-thirds of the NFL's teams at Clemson's indoor practice facility, Ellington turned in a solid performance in variety of drills, capped by an unofficial time of 4.51 in the 40-yard dash.

That was a significant improvement over the 4.61 time he recorded at the NFL Combine, in which he tweaked a hamstring injury that had already knocked him out of the NFL-sponsored Senior Bowl.

When Clemson held its Pro Day earlier this month, Ellington watched from the sidelines, waiting for his day in the spotlight.

"I was more stressed out these past two weeks than any time, just trying to get back to my best so I could go out and perform," Ellington said. "I'm glad the teams came out. I'd have been disappointed if they hadn't. Not to be arrogant or anything, but I feel like I'm one of the best players in the draft at my position.

"I'm just very fortunate to have had an extra day to come out and perform and put on my best show."

Ellington said he feels like he helped himself during his workout.

"There was a little bit of doubt from some teams," he said. "To go out there and perform, still not at 100 percent, but to stand out pretty good, I feel like I showed what I can do."

Ellington performs at Pro Day

NFL draft prep coming to close

Ellington said he believes he's well-prepared to make the transition to the NFL.

"I think the biggest thing I have to prepare for is the terminology," he said. "College terminology is a little different, but the concepts are still the same. Understanding the concepts allows me to pick things up quickly."

Ellington, who worked out with teammate DeAndre Hopkins for the New England Patriots last week, said he has adjusted well to catching the NFL football.

"I'm used to the NFL ball now," he said. "It's actually way easier to catch than the college ball. You'd think the college ball would be easier because it's smaller, but I found the (NFL) ball to be easier."

He said that several teams expressed an interest in him returning kickoffs and punts.

"A few of them have told me that's something I should work on and prepare for," Ellington said. "Going into my rookie season I'll be on special teams a lot. I'm more familiar catching kicks than punts, but it's not something that I can't work on."

Ellington said he likes his position going into the draft.

"I just have to sit and wait now," he said. "I've done everything I have control of, and now I'll just wait and see who calls my name on draft day. I'm used to playing on Saturdays, and now I'm ready for Sundays and Monday nights."

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