Former Terps Turning Heads In Preparation for 2023 NFL Draft

With the second semester now in full swing, offseason workouts have kicked off for Maryland football but a handful of former players have turned heads this week ahead of the 2023 NFL Draft.

With the Senior Bowl set for this weekend, former offensive tackle Jaelyn Duncan drew buzz on the third and final day of practice. “Of all the tackles on the field today, Jaelyn Duncan looked the most athletic, nimble, and NFL-ready. He strictly played on the left side and dominated everyone he faced,” Pro Football Network wrote. “Duncan blocked with tremendous fundamentals, used his hands incredibly well, and showed terrific footwork sliding off the edge. He also did a great job anchoring at the point, which has been his nemesis in the past.

The praise didn’t end there after Thursday’s practice. “The size, length, athleticism, and movement fluidity finally paired with the technical aspect of the game for Jaelyn Duncan on Day 3. It is no secret that this player has some of the best natural traits in the 2023 NFL Draft class. The question is whether that will click into place with the technical and mental aspects of the game,” Yard Baker added. “On Day 3, Duncan displayed consistency. He mirrored pass rushers and used his length to keep them at bay in full team drills. Additionally, he regularly prevailed in one-on-one matchups. Does that mean it all has clicked for him and it will be easy sailing from here? Not so fast. But it might mean that he can learn on the fly with the right coaching and apply better technique than he has shown on film.”

Duncan, a three-time honorable mention All-Big Ten selection, was a four-year starter under head coach Mike Locksley after signing with the program as a four-star prospect out of St. Frances (MD). Duncan joins Jakorian Bennett and Chad Ryland as former Terps suiting up in the Senior Bowl, which is set for 2:30 PM on Saturday. Bennett has also turned heads with his speed in one-on-ones while Ryland has flashed his strong leg that fans got a chance to enjoy during his one season in College Park.

Spencer Anderson, meanwhile, turned heads at the East-West Shrine Game on Thursday night. “Anderson played all five offensive line spots in college, is undefeated in press, was a good interview and consistently performed the best of all East offensive lineman,” Sports Illustrated wrote. Wide receiver Jacob Copeland was another who “showed nuance and hands in addition to his already-present versatility.”

Maryland will send seven players to the 2023 NFL Combine, the most since at least 1987 as head coach Mike Locksley looks to surpass a program-record five draft picks this year. Defensive backs and kickers will work out on March 3, wide receivers on March 4 and offensive linemen on March 5.

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