Pro Day Sights and Sounds: C.J. Stroud Says Being the Potential No. 1 Overall Pick Has "Been A Dream Of Mine for a Very Long Time"

By Garrick Hodge on March 22, 2023 at 8:06 pm

The eyes of the NFL turned to Columbus on Wednesday.

More than 100 NFL scouts were in attendance at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center on Wednesday to get a close look at Ohio State's NFL Draft prospects, with quarterback C.J. Stroud and wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba both being big-ticket draws for NFL teams.

"There's a couple of them that I missed, but overall I felt like I had a pretty good day," Stroud said of his pro day performance. "It came out of my hand pretty well." 

With 14 members of the Carolina Panthers' organization in Columbus to watch Stroud, he knew a positive showing could result in him being the first player taken overall in the 2023 NFL Draft. 

"It's been a dream of mine for a very long time," Stroud said of potentially being the No. 1 overall pick. "My dad used to make me wear a first-round draft pick, first pick in the draft shirt. He set that foundation early on."

Smith-Njigba ran the 40-yard dash for the first time since declaring for the NFL Draft, as the former OSU wideout opted to not run it at the NFL Scouting Combine. He officially clocked in a time of 4.48 seconds.

Smith-Njigba also embraced the opportunity to run routes with Stroud one final time in Columbus.

"That's my best friend," Smith-Njigba said of Stroud. "For me to be out here supporting him and for him to support me, it definitely makes everything really smooth." 

Besides Stroud and Smith-Njigba, you can find other video interviews from Wednesday's pro day with Paris Johnson, Cameron Brown, Tanner McCalister, Zach Harrison, Luke Wypler, Marvin Harrison Jr., Dawand Jones and Ryan Day below. We've also got interviews with OSU club football's Kellyn Gerenstein, who worked out as a defensive back Wednesday, Brown University's Allen Smith and NFL Hall of Fame wideout Marvin Harrison Sr., who talked about his son being at OSU and gave his thoughts on Kyle McCord.

Above, you can find a photo gallery with nearly 100 photos of the action Wednesday.

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