Anthony Richardson tries to increase NFL draft inventory at Pro Day in Florida

Former quarterback for the Florida Gators Anthony Richardson accomplished what he set out to do during Thursday’s Pro Day in Florida at the Condron Indoor Football Facility.

In a 25-minute throwing session, Richardson showed better accuracy at short and medium distances while showing arm strength seen its shares are rising dramatically for next month’s NFL draft. One of his 62 throws went more than 74 meters in the air. Another flew so high that it reached the roof of the indoor facility and fell back down.

“I told a team that I think I could possibly do 80, so I hit the roof,” Richardson said. “I tried to show that, it didn’t work. Maybe one day I can show that.”

Richardson’s main goal, however, was to show he could walk receivers on the shorter distances.

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“I delivered the ball pretty well today,” Richardson said. “Some of them weren’t as good as I would have liked, but I feel like I threw the ball pretty well today.”

Richardson finished practice with his patented backflip, which he hinted might retire before his NFL career begins.

“I’m getting older, so my body isn’t going to be able to handle the backflip,” Richardson said. “Well, we’ll see.”

Anthony Richardson goes through passing drills at Pro Day in Florida.

A large crowd of NFL talent assessors

Coaches and talent evaluators from all 32 NFL teams attended UF’s Pro Day. The list included Carolina Panthers coach Frank Reich, Seattle Seahawks coach Pete Carroll, and Jacksonville Jaguars coach Doug Pederson.

The Panthers hold the No. 1 pick in the NFL draft while the Seahawks hold the No. 5 pick.

Richardson confirmed he had dinner with the Panthers staff on Wednesday night.

“You have number one,” Richardson said. “If they should call me up, I’m just trying to set expectations and figure out what they need from me and what they want from me as a player, as a quarterback and as a person. That’s the main thing.”

A Record performance in the NFL Scouting Combine increased Richardson’s stock after a rocky first season as a starting quarterback in Florida. He finished the year with 2,549 yards with 17 TDs for 9 interceptions.

“Anthony, to a certain extent, was betting on himself,” said Florida coach Billy Napier. “He knew which teams needed quarterbacks. He went through an extensive process and made a decision that will prove to be a wise decision.

“Anthony, he’s a humble kid. He’s a smart kid. Just a really inexperienced player, was a first year beginner in a new system and everyone around him was in a new system and teaching a new system. So we all know what. “This guy is capable of it. It’s just a matter of repetition. He’s going to instill the work ethic and attitude. And he’s going to have a phenomenal career.”

Richardson jockeying with Ohio State’s CJ Stroud, Alabama’s Bryce Young and Kentucky’s Will Levis as one of the top four quarterbacks selected in the NFL draft. He said he decided to throw at the Pro Day because the other three quarterbacks were throwing at their respective Pro Days.

“A lot of other quarterbacks have thrown the ball and they’re great quarterbacks, so I wanted to show how great I am, too,” Richardson said. “Getting out of here and maybe having fun with my brothers for the last time is definitely a blessing. definitely a good opportunity for me.”

Attention to Anthony Richardson helps teammates

Florida defenseman Gervon Dexter Sr. drops a rolled towel while performing a drill.

Florida defenseman Gervon Dexter Sr. drops a rolled towel while performing a drill.

The attention surrounding Richardson could end up benefiting some of his teammates who attended Pro Day activities. Richardson was one of a dozen Florida athletes who attended the event.

Linebacker Amari Burney drew some attention with his speed, running 4.53 and 4.54 in the 40-yard dash.

All-American offensive lineman O’Cyrus Torrence, a prospective first-round pick, performed some Kegel and position drills. So did Florida defenseman Gervon Dexter Sr., who made it through to the second round.

“I’m very versatile,” said Dexter. “I can play multiple positions up front, as can my length. I’ve talked to a few coaches who think I did things in the film that others physically can’t do.”

This article originally appeared on The Gainesville Sun: Anthony Richardson shows off for NFL scouts at Pro Day in Florida

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