Florida quarterback Anthony Richardson throws a pass during an NFL football Pro Day, Thursday, March 30, 2023, in Gainesville, Fla. (AP Photo/John Raoux)

Anthony Richardson, Gators Wow Scouts and Coaches at Pro Day

Anthony Richardson stood on the field of the Florida Gators indoor practice facility with the ball in hand. Every eye in the packed room was glued to the 6-foot-4, 246-pound athletic specimen. He took a three step drop, uncorked his arm and unleashed an absolute rocket into the sky. The ball whistled through the air as it made its trajectory towards a speeding Justin Shorter 60-plus yards down field. 

Thud! What sounded like a bowling ball hitting a wooden floor, the ball that left Richardson’s hands made an emphatic clash with the ceiling of the massive facility. Richardson’s arm is simply too strong. 

 

Richardson wowed scouts with his arm, launching deep ball after deep ball. He was the star of the show. 

But he wasn’t the only Gator to shine. He’s also not the only Gator projected to be selected in round one. O’Cyrus Torrence certainly drew a crowd – the 6 foot 5 All-American guard reportedly met with the Titans and Rams this week. But he’s far from done. Torrence told Steve Russell today on Sport Scene that several more team meetings await. 

On defense, defensive linemen Brenton Cox and Gervon Dexter showed off their size and strength while linebacker Amari Burney showed off his speed, blazing the 40-yard dash. 

Dexter weighed in at 318 pounds at 6 foot 5 as Cox powered through 29 reps on the bench press. 

Burney’s 4.53 40 time would rank seventh among all linebackers at the NFL combine. Jaguars head coach Doug Pederson and general manager Trent Baalke got a front row seat to see Burney fly. 

 

On the back end, safety Trey Dean III improved upon his 40-time from the combine. The 4-year starter at Florida certainly spent the last few weeks working on his speed – and it paid off with a .6-second improvement and a 4.69 time. 

Big names from all across the league were in town to see the Gators show off their skills. From Pederson to Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll – the Heavener football facility certainly had quite the audience. Few guests seem more important than Panthers head coach Frank Reich and members of the organization who were present. Carolina is currently on the clock with the top overall pick – and Richardson is in play for the selection. 

Reich and company certainly got a show from Richardson who – beyond launching balls to the ceiling – uncorked several beautiful deep connections. 

 

It wasn’t over for Richardson after a long day of throwing. The former Eastside high school star was a wanted man from the media after his performance. AR completed interviews with NFL Network, ESPN, WRUF, Channel 9 news in Charlotte and a press conference all in less than an hour. Safe to say he’s a pretty popular guy. 

 

Despite the endless interviews and attention from the media at pro day, Richardson said he’s thankful for the day and the process. 

For Richardson and every Gator at pro day, the clock is ticking until draft day on April 27.

In less than a month they’ll know their home for the next few years – Richardson better hope it’s with a team who’s stadium doesn’t have a roof. 

About Will Levenson

Will Levenson is a Journalism and Sports Media major at UF. He produces daily shows for WRUF, including "Sport Scene with Steve Russell," "Harp on Sports," and "The Tailgate." In addition, Will provides weekly sports updates for WUFT News and radio Sportscenters for WRUF radio. Will has been a writer at ESPN Gainesville since September 2019.

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