Fresno State Football

Ejiro Ederaine among NFL hopefuls looking to shine in front of scouts

Fresno State’s Ejiro Ederaine, right, pulls down Nevada quarterback Tyler Stewart after a run during their game at Bulldog Stadium on Nov. 5. Ederaine hopes to impress NFL scouts on Fresno State Pro Day on Wednesday.
Fresno State’s Ejiro Ederaine, right, pulls down Nevada quarterback Tyler Stewart after a run during their game at Bulldog Stadium on Nov. 5. Ederaine hopes to impress NFL scouts on Fresno State Pro Day on Wednesday. ckohlruss@fresnobee.com

Former Fresno State linebacker Ejiro Ederaine wasn’t invited to the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis in February.

That’s OK with him.

Ederaine hopes to show how much he’s progressed since playing in the NFLPA Collegiate Bowl in January, when former Bulldogs turned NFL Draft hopefuls showcase their skills for pro scouts at Fresno State Pro Day at noon Wednesday at Bulldog Stadium.

“It is what it is; it was out of my control,” said Ederaine, who last season led the Bulldogs in tackles (99) tackles for a loss (16.5) and sacks (9.0). “I did what I had to do. I played my hardest and my numbers speak for themselves. I feel like I had a great year and that’s all you can do. If someone feels I’m not good enough to go to the combine, then everyone is entitled to their opinion.

“A lot of guys who didn’t get invited to the combine do get drafted. You need just one GM to like you.”

The draft is April 28-30 in Chicago.

Ederaine finished his collegiate career with 45.5 tackles for a loss, ranking No. 2 all-time in Mountain West Conference history. The Bee caught up with the two-time, second-team All-Mountain West selection (2013, 2015) for this thoughts on the next step in his playing career.

Question: It has been four months since you played your last game with Fresno State and then you had a chance to play in the NFLPA bowl game. How did that go and what have you been up to?

Answer: It was a fun experience. I played in a 4-3 defense and played middle linebacker, which is nice and felt natural and felt comfortable. Besides that, I’ve been training down with founder and president of Prolific Athletes Ryan Flaherty in San Diego, and I had a blast and it was fun. I was enjoying a good two to three months just out there and just putting in a lot of work, and it was a fun experience.

Ryan Flaherty has trained a lot of well-known athletes. What did you see in him that made you feel you needed to train there with him?

To me, he’s the best trainer for me. I trained with a lot of guys like (possible first-round selections) Jared Goff and Carson Wentz. It was fun training with those guys. They are some funny guys.

Well you’re a funny guy yourself …

Yeah, yeah (laughs). Training was fun. We got after it, but it was a loose group. We weren’t super tight about things.

When preparing for Pro Day, what do players normally go through, especially those who didn’t compete at the combine?

We train Monday though Saturday. Some of the routine we go through is speed and agility and flip-flop. After that, we do some positions drills or we go in the classroom and go in the weight room and work on upper body and lower body. That’s kind of how it is. Just training for two months, just really doing that stuff and perfecting the drills you have to do like the shuttle, three-cone and getting your 40 mechanics right. It was hard work, but I enjoyed every minute of it.

Big day for you on Wednesday. You have to shine to impress NFL scouts since you didn’t get invited to the combine. The Pro Day is your combine.

That’s why I had the pleasure in playing in the NFLPA game. I had contact with teams and did a round of interviews and definitely look forward to showing them how I progressed since the PA game to now. I put on some more weight (from 234 to 244) and feel I’m faster and with the specific drills I feel like I’ve improved. Just ready to show them where I’m at.

Anthony Galaviz: 559-441-6042, @agalaviz_TheBee

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