Jordan Poyer hasn’t felt this worn out since last training camp in August.

The former Oregon State football player spent the week in Mobile, Ala., in preparation for Saturday’s Senior Bowl, the premier postseason all-star game that showcases the top prospects for the upcoming NFL draft.

Practices have been intense and days have been long. He has met with scouts from all the NFL teams. The week leading up to the game is a drawn-out job interview.

“I’ve been real busy,” Poyer said. “They’ve been long days, but I’m trying to enjoy the process.”

Monday through Wednesday, scouts were there to watch practices up close. Players woke up at 7 a.m., practiced for two hours and then had meetings all afternoon.

The usual array of one-on-one drills are seen along with seven-on-seven and team scrimmage situations for the cornerback from Astoria.

“Guys are trying to compete for spots,” Poyer said. “Whenever you get that, you have intense practice. You don’t want to get shown up by anyone.”

Poyer felt his Monday practice was only average, but Tuesday’s workout was his best. The one-on-one workout Wednesday was down but the team portion was good.

Thursday’s practice was light and there’s a walk-through today. Scouts have already left, so players are more relaxed and looking forward to having fun in the game.

“The game is more to have fun and a lot of guys are tired,” Poyer said. “We are looking forward to having fun in our last college game. We’ve heard practices are more important than the game anyway.”

NFL Draft Countdown ranks him as the No. 4 cornerback in the draft. Besides covering receivers, Poyer is being looked at as a punt returner, blocking on kick returns and covering on the kickoff team.

His versatility in the secondary and special teams is expected to make him an attractive draft pick. Poyer also has an invitation to the NFL Combine from Feb. 20-26, which involves more workouts and interviews with the NFL teams.

“I’m feeling pretty good about the practices, and I have the mindset of trying to be better than yesterday,” Poyer said. “You have to be mentally tough. You have to be into it all, all the time.”

Some of the meetings were about game preparation. Most of them were with scouts trying to find out about the personalities of the players and what they know about football.

A scout would text Poyer in the evening about meeting him, and they would go over football on a board. They asked him about recognizing the offense and how to defend a play.

He felt prepare to diagram plays and carried himself well in interviews.

“The hardest part is the long days,” Poyer said. “You are moving all the time. It can be tiring, but you have to do it. You have to start being a pro.”

Poyer had been training for the game in Arizona and will return there after the Senior Bowl to prepare for the combine. He’ll also be at OSU’s pro timing day in March and try to secure personal workouts with clubs before the April 25-27 draft.

Cliff Kirkpatrick covers Oregon State sports for the Gazette-Times. He can be reached at

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