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With no NFL Combine, Arizona’s draft hopefuls will have to impress in Pro Day

Arizona v UCLA Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images

None of Arizona’s draft-eligible players will be participating in the NFL Combine this year. But that’s because there won’t be a combine, another casualty of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The NFL announced Monday it will not be holding any in-person activities leading up to the 2021 NFL Draft, instead making things like interviews and psychological assessments virtual while limiting physical examinations. When it comes to workouts and drills, those will be held at college campuses.

That means Arizona’s departing seniors will have to make the most of the school’s annual Pro Day sometime this spring. An athletic department spokesman said a date hasn’t been finalized for the UA’s Pro Day.

While the majority of Arizona’s seniors are returning for 2021, taking advantage of the NCAA not counting this past season toward eligibility, there are at least four Wildcats who have said they are not returning. Running back Gary Brightwell, defensive lineman Roy Lopez and cornerback Lorenzo Burns have all officially declared for the draft, while offensive lineman Steven Bailey has said he’s not coming back for another season.

Arizona has had just two players selected in the previous four drafts, most recently in 2019 when defensive tackle PJ Johnson went in the seventh round to the Detroit Lions. The last draftees the Wildcats signed out of high school were safety Will Parks and linebacker Scooby Wright in 2016, while the last UA offensive player picked was running back Ka’Deem Carey in 2014.