NFL scouts will hit the campus of the Penn State Nittany Lions on Monday, putting a handful of the program’s outgoing football players through the paces to see whether or not they can cut it at the next level. One of the hopeful Staters who will be trying to break through into the NFL is quarterback Matt McGloin. So what are his chances to impress at Penn State’s pro-day?
The fifth-year senior enjoyed a breakout season in 2012 in the pro-style offense of first year head coach Bill O’Brien. He led the Lions to an 8-4 record, which is even more impressive when you consider he was playing in a new system for a new coach, under unheralded scrutiny following the Jerry Sandusky scandal and without his top two weapons, wide receiver Justin Brown and running back Silas Redd, who both transferred over the summer.
Despite all of that, McGloin finished as the top passer in the Big Ten, finishing first in yards (3,271), attempts (446, tie), completions (270), touchdowns (24) and was second in interceptions thrown with just five all season long. The former walk-on has seen his stock boosted by his breakout 2012 campaign, but knows he still has work to do as the No. 18 rated quarterback by CBSSports.com (behind No. 17 Collin Klein).
McGloin will try to overcome his perceived lack of size and “small hands” by playing to his strengths as an intelligent quarterback who makes good decisions with the football (evidenced by his 29 total touchdowns to five interceptions last season). He does very well in the pocket and can move enough to avoid the rush and buy time for himself to make a play down the field. His experience in a true pro-style offense under O’Brien also gives him valuable experience for the next level.
Expectations, however, are still tempered for McGloin. He knows that getting drafted is a long shot, but he wants to get his name out there to at least secure an invitation to camp. As his coach told him, “All you need to worry about is getting into a camp.” From there, McGloin is confident that he will be able to find a roster spot by adapting, learning the system quickly and showing he can make a smart decision.
All that is down the road, however. For now, Matt McGloin is only focused on impressing at the Penn State pro-day and taking that next step towards an NFL career.