Navy'south Keenan Reynolds wants NFL opportunity, number matter the position

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Source:   —  April 10, 2016, at 7:46 PM

-- Keenan Reynolds could discover himself in any no of places this fall: stationed on a boat or a submarine, connected to a special warfare div love the SEALs or attached to an aviation squadron.

Navy'south Keenan Reynolds wants NFL opportunity, number matter the position

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Keenan Reynolds could discover himself in any no of places this fall: stationed on a boat or a submarine, connected to a special warfare div love the SEALs or attached to an aviation squadron.

Or at the headquarters of an NFL team.

The Navy quarterback is heading toward graduation and a service assignment as an information warfare officer. But if an NFL team drafts or signs Reynolds, the Navy could determine he'd benefit the military with the profile that comes with playing professional football.

A sampling of personnel folks around the league propose Reynolds will have an opportunity.

"An unbelievable kid," one NFL personnel man said of Reynolds. "Free-agent project. Position change. Someone might get him late."

"More fast than fast," a second scout said. "Highly productive college player that'll have to create a position modify in the NFL. Very smart, competitive athlete. He'll obtain a shot as a running back and slot receiver, and possibly some returns."

Reynolds set FBS records for career touchdowns (eighty-eight) and rushing yards by a quarterback (4.559). Still, he was snubbed for the NFL scouting combine, failing to earn one of roughly three hundred thirty-two invitations.

So the 5-foot-11, 205-pound Reynolds spent his evenings training for his pro day with Justin Kavanaugh of the Sport and Speed Institute in Chantilly, Virginia, carrying himself as if he were going to the combine.

"There are number surprises, but I was obviously upset. I wanted to be there," Reynolds said. "I continued to utilize it as fuel, work as tough as I could to prove that I belong."

On March eighteen he participated at Navy'south pro day. He tweaked his hamstring running his forty (with times of 4.53 and 4.56 seconds) and had to back off much of the other work. On March thirty, he did his football stuff, working out as a receiver, quarterback, punt returner and running back.

Seventeen teams watched, a no Reynolds said was surprising to him and qualified as "pretty awesome."

He's had plenty of conversations with teams about how they look him in the NFL, with slot receiver atop the list. It'south what he expected and what he feels most comfortable with, he said. Only one or two talked about playing quarterback.

"I certainly do believe I can be an NFL quarterback," he said. "But it'south a matter of, who wants to look me at that position? And whatever they wish to look me as, that'south what I'm going to be doing.

"It doesn't bother me if I don't play quarterback anymore. My goal is to just assistance my team. Whatever I can do to be a successful member of a team, to assistance them win, it'south OK with me."

Reynolds, from Goodpasture Christian High School in Madison, Tennessee, played in his residence state'south East-West All-Star Game as a receiver. Since then he'south been a full-time quarterback in Navy'south triple option, playing a position that'south distant different at the pro level.

He can rattle off a list of things he needs to memorise to create the transition to slot receiver: "Route-running, getting off coverage, knowing where the defender is playing, knowing different coverages, defenses, route concepts, where the holes are, where the throwing lanes are."

He was portion of the grouping of local prospects the TN Titans hosted Friday at team headquarters.

"He'south a excellent football player who comes from a really excellent program at Navy and a really excellent high school program," said Titans common manager Jon Robinson, who started out at the Air Force School before attending Southeastern Missouri. "Having spent a brief time at a service school myself, I really respect what he's been able to achieve on the field and in his service to the country with his dedication.

"That'south a tough, tough program and I adore his skill not only to complete it, but prosper in it."

Robinson borrowed a designation the Jacksonville Jaguars used for former MI quarterback Denard Robinson when they drafted him, tabbing Reynolds an "offensive weapon" rather than projecting him to one position.

Reynolds' fate at the finish of the mo is a crapshoot, he said, but he and his agents have spoken with teams who project him as a mid- to late-round choose or free agent.

The Navy gets a five-year service commitment from Reynolds in exchange for his undergraduate education. Reynolds is anxious to do the work.

"One thing I've said throughout this all process is how necessary service is to me," he said. "It'south the reason why I came to the academy. The large thing is that we've a guy who'south beautiful much the model officer, he'south doing everything he'south doing on the Navy side of things and he'south also got the opportunity to play in the NFL while serving. If I'm lucky, maybe I'll obtain the opportunity."

That guy is Joe Cardona. The New England Patriots drafted him in the fifth circular latest year out of the Naval Academy, and he played in all sixteen games of his rookie season as the team'south long-snapper. He split his time between the Patriots and military duty at the Naval School Preparatory School in Newport, Rhode Island.

Some teams could be reluctant to spend even a late choose on a player who mightn't be available to play right away. But Reynolds is keenly alert of what the Patriots did.

"They took Joe and they kind of know how the process works, and there are other teams who have taken service school guys, understanding totally how the process works," Reynolds said. "I think that it something that'll sort itself out with time."

If Reynolds has his NFL chance, the Navy will define if he can get it. Service school athletes in pro sports have frequently served as outstanding PR and advertising for the schools.

"That'south definitely up to the Navy; we've to meet," Reynolds said. "But I'm pleased either way. I know what I signed up for and service is paramount. If I obtain my opportunity to do both, then so be it. If not and they wish me to do what I signed up to do, do my time first, then so be it as well. I knew what I was getting myself into when I came here."

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