NFL professional days are taking on much greater importance ahead of the 2021 NFL Draft. The league has canceled its traditional NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis this year, which means that official prospect measurements and drills at the camps will be held on their respective college campuses from early March to early April.
For teams wanting to get a closer look at the players they are considering recruiting in late April, they would have to attend those specific pro days across the country. The NFL has also limited all teams to having no more than three combined representatives of their office staff, scouts and coaches on each professional day.
Without a Combine, talent screeners must do their professional due diligence polishing the film and virtually interviewing prospects. Starting with when the best college programs and some of the most notable players available will run, here’s everything you need to know to follow the pre-draft action.
MOST NFL DRAFT: SN’s Latest 2021 Mock Draft | Great board of the top 50 prospects
2021 NFL Professional Days Schedule
Friday March 5
Tuesday March 9
- State of kansas
- Northwest (OT Rashawn Slater, LB Paddy Fisher, CB Greg Newsome)
Wednesday March 10
- Arkansas (QB Feleipe Franks)
- Northern illinois
Thursday March 11
- Clemson (RB Travis Etienne, WR Amari Rodgers, OT Jackson Carman, WR Cornell Powell) *
- New Mexico
- Texas (EDGE Joseph Ossai, OT Samuel Cosmi, S Caden Stearns, QB Sam Ehlinger) *
Clemson’s professional day coverage can be viewed on the ACC Network from 10 to 12:30 pm ET and at 5 pm ET on the NFL Network and fuboTV. Texas Business Day coverage can be seen at 5 p.m. ET on NFL Network and fuboTV.
Friday March 12
- Arkansas State
- State of North Dakota (QB Trey Lance, OT Dillon Radunz)
- Oklahoma (G / C Creed Humphrey, EDGE Ronnie Perkins, RB Rhamondre Stevenson)
Professional day coverage in the state of North Dakota and Oklahoma begins at noon ET on NFL Network and fuboTV.
Monday March 15
- Kent State
- Middle Tennessee State
Tuesday March 16
Wednesday March 17
- Georgia (EDGE Azeez Ojulari, CB Eric Stokes, CB Tyson Campbell, QB Jamie Newman, G Ben Cleveland)
- Pittsburgh (S Paris Ford, EDGE Patrick Jones II, DT Jalen Twyman)
- State of San José
Georgia’s professional day coverage can be seen at 9 p.m. ET on NFL Network and fuboTV.
Thursday March 18
- Brown (WR Seth Williams)
- Buffalo (RB Jaret Patterson)
- Central arkansas
- Louisiana Tech
- Stanford (OT Walker Little, QB Davis Mills)
- West Virginia
Auburn and Stanford Pro Day coverage begins at 3 p.m. ET on NFL Network and fuboTV.
Friday March 19
- Memphis (RB Kenneth Gainwell)
- TCU (S Trevon Moehrig, S Ar’Darius Washington)
Monday March 22
- Air Force
- Bowling green
- State of colorado
- Florida State (CB Asante Samuel Jr. DT Marvin Wilson, S Hamsah Nasirildeen, WR Tamorrion Terry)
- Iowa (DT Daviyon Nixon)
- Missouri (LB Nick Bolton)
- Northern iowa
Tuesday 23 March
- Alabama (WR DeVonta Smith, CB Patrick Surtain II, WR Jaylen Waddle, QB Mac Jones, RB Najee Harris, DT Christian Barmore, OT Alex Leatherwood, G Landon Dickerson, LB Dylan Moses)
- Central Michigan
- State of Iowa
- Purdue (WR Rondale Moore)
Alabama and Purdue’s Pro Day coverage can be seen at Noon ET on NFL Network and fuboTV.
Wednesday March 24
- Michigan state
- Mississippi State (RB Kylin Hill)
- South Carolina (CB Jaycee Horn)
- USC (G Alijah Vera-Tucker, WR Amon-Ra St. Brown, DT Jay Tufele)
USC Business Day coverage begins at 11 a.m. ET on NFL Network and fuboTV.
Thursday March 25
- South Georgia
- North texas
- Ole miss (WR Elijah Moore)
- Penn State (LB Micah Parsons, EDGE Jayson Oweh, TE Pat Freiermuth)
- San Diego State
- High school (QB Shane Buechele)
- Tennessee (G Trey Smith)
- Western michigan
Friday March 26
- Boston College (TE Hunter Long)
- BYU (QB Zach Wilson)
- Michigan (EDGE Kwity Paye, OT Jalen Mayfield)
- State of South Dakota (WR Cade Jones)
- Virginia Tech (CB Caleb Farley, OT Christian Darrisaw)
BYU, Michigan, and Virgnia Tech’s Pro Day coverage can be seen at 1 p.m. ET on NFL Network and fuboTV.
Monday March 29
- State of arizona
- Duke (EDGE Chris Rumph II)
- Miami (EDGE Gregory Rousseau, EDGE Jalan Phillips, TE Brevin Jordan, EDGE Quincy Roche)
- Miami (Ohio)
- North Carolina (RB Javonte Williams, WR Dyami Brown, RB Michael Carter, LB Chazz Surratt)
Tuesday March 30
- Alabama (Follow up)
- East Carolina
- Florida Atlantic
- State of North Carolina
- State of ohio (QB Justin Fields, G Wyatt Davis, DT Tommy Togai, LB Pete Werner, CB Shaun Wade, LB Baron Browning, G Josh Myers, RB Trey Sermon)
- Texas A&M (QB Kellen Mond)
- Washington (DT Levi Onwuzurike, S Elijah Molden)
Pro-day coverage of Alabama, Ohio State and Washington begins at 6 p.m. ET. on NFL Network at fuboTV.
Wednesday March 31
- Boise State
- Florida (TE Kyle Pitts, WR Kadarius Toney, QB Kyle Trask)
- LSU (WR Ja’Marr Chase, WR Terrace Marshall Jr.)
- Our lady (LB Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah, OT Liam Eichenberg)
- Wake Forest (EDGE Carlos Basham Jr., WR Sage Surratt)
Florida, LSU and Notre Dame Pro Day coverage can be seen at 11 a.m. ET on NFL Network and fuboTV.
Thursday April 1
- Applachian State
- Minnesota (WR Bateman expenses)
- State of Oklahoma (OT Teven Jenkins, RB Chuba Hubbard)
- State of oregon
- South Florida
- Western kentucky
Friday April 2
- Oregon (OT Penei Sewell, S Jevon Holland)
- Tulsa (LB Javen Collins)
Wednesday April 7
Friday April 9
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How to watch the NFL professional days on TV
The NFL Network and ESPN will have live pre-draft coverage of the biggest workouts on college campus, focusing on featured shows with a plethora of 2021’s top prospects, including Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Florida. There will also be a focus on first-round quarterbacks from outside of those schools, like BYU’s Zach Wilson and North Dakota’s Trey Lance.
Television and broadcast information will be available closer to the date of each workout, so stay tuned for updates as they become available.
The most important stories to watch
1, quarterbacks, quarterbacks, quarterbacks (minus Trevor Lawrence). Lawrence already turned in his individual day pro training at Clemson in mid-February before taking a shoulder on his left shoulder (non-pitcher) and did everything he had to do to secure the No. 1 overall pick for the Jaguars. Now Wilson, Lance, Ohio State’s Justin Fields, Alabama’s Mac Jones and Florida’s Kyle Trask will have a chance to settle their first and second round positions behind them. With the stock of every QB after Lawrence somewhat shifting, every workout can be critical.
2. Alabama multiplied by two. With Jones and several key members of the Crimson Tide national championship offense set to perform for scouts, that doesn’t even fit into the traditional glut of high-level defensive players who are professional-ready and leave Nick Saban behind. The prospects are so elitist and enjoyable, this career day should happen twice, one week apart, on March 23rd and then again on March 30th. Watching Jones ‘actions aside, it’s also a “competition” to see if DeVonta Smith or Jaylen Waddle should be the first’ Bama wide receiver to leave the board in the first round, and if running back Najee Harris it can convince teams that it should go later in the round as well.
3. Dynamic trio from Florida. Trask will operate his two first-round insiders, dominant catcher Kyle Pitts and big-play slot catcher Kadarius Toney. Trask has dropped out of top 32 consideration in the process, but he can use his family goals to try and propel himself into the second round.
MORE: Conclusions from Trevor Lawrence’s Daily Workout
4. Climbing up the board. In some combination, Clemson’s Harris and Travis Etienne have held their own as the 1-2 punch over available running back prospects. But runners like the North Carolina duo of Javonte Williams and Michael Carter have seen their stocks skyrocket. Meanwhile, players like Mississippi State’s Kylin Hill and Oklahoma State’s Chuba Hubbard have more to prove.
5. Getting weird in the Big Ten. As defenders of the lead, Michigan’s Kwity Paye and Penn State’s Jayson Oweh can put on a show. The same goes for Northwestern offensive tackle Rashawn Slater and Purdue wide receiver Rondale Moore. There are many dynamic athletes to watch in the Big Ten outside of Ohio.
6. Exclusions are back in play. Slater, Oregon offensive tackle Penei Sewell, Penn State linebacker Micah Parsons, Miami lead running back Gregory Rousseau and Virginia Tech cornerback Caleb Farley highlight the many standouts who decided to skip the 2020 season due to concerns about COVID-19. It will be good to see them and others live in soccer game mode again in 2021, before they transition to the NFL.
7. Living on the edge … and as a linebacker. There have been a lot of fluctuating values involving top pass rushers and second-tier covering men. Related to that, there are many versatile insurances behind them trying to find their place in the pecking order. As much as there is offensive excitement in this draft, defensive decisions are tough. Teams will want some more answers on talent and schema adjustments.
Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.