GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Marcus Maye made the decision to return for his senior season at Florida to finish his degree and hopefully boost his stock for the NFL draft.
Then the standout safety sustained a season-ending broken arm on senior day against South Carolina.
While he put together another strong season pre-injury for scouts and NFL talent evaluators to review, he knows the first question he’s going to have to answer from most teams is about the injury and how he’s recovered.
“That’s what the big question mark was, I feel like. How my injury’s coming along, how I’m going to move with it and stuff like that,” he said Tuesday after Florida’s pro day. “But I mean I’ve put in the work to get it back to where I need to be and I just wanted to come out and show that today.”
Maye was one of the many Florida draft prospects working out at the Gators’ indoor practice facility before a host of NFL scouts and coaches.
Speaking afterward, he said he didn’t know what his 40-yard dash time was, saying he heard it was between 4.4 and 4.5 seconds. The website DraftAnalyst.com reported his times in that same range, between 4.47 and 4.52, with his three-cone time between 7.05 and 7.10 seconds and his short shuttle between 4.12 and 4.18 seconds. Maye said his vertical jump was around 34 to 35 inches.
After not being able to test at the NFL combine while still recovering from his injury, the consensus opinion Tuesday was that Maye made a strong impression at pro day.
“Everybody’s been saying I’ve been doing pretty well, so ‘Just keep it up, good job.’ All positive feedback,” he said.
Maye said he had two meetings with NFL teams on Monday night, in addition to a bunch that took place earlier this month at the combine and more still to come in the next two weeks.
“I’ve got to travel to a lot of teams and stuff like that, so a bunch of plane rides soon starting next week and I don’t think it stops till late April,” he said. “… There’s been a few teams showing a lot of interest. The Browns, the Steelers, the Bucs, there’s been a bunch of teams.”
Florida coach Jim McElwain has continually reiterated that he felt Maye boosted his stock by his play this season, regardless of the injury.
The safety still finished fourth on the team with 50 tackles last season, while also collecting an interception, 1.5 tackles for loss and 6 pass break-ups.
“When you talk about Marcus, (it’s) his versatility not only to play center field but come down and play in the box and still cover guys as well,” McElwain said.
Maye is maintaining high hopes for the draft, but he’s ready for whatever outcome and opportunity comes his way.
“I mean, my dream is always, everybody wants to go in the first round, but wherever I go, wherever I end up, they’re going to get a player that’s willing to do whatever,” he said. “So for me it doesn’t matter.”