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January 3, 2013

Five Hokies Preparing For NFL Combine

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Their college careers are over, but each player hopes their playing careers are far from it.

Five Hokies who just played their final games for Virginia Tech have received invitations to the NFL Combine Feb. 20-26 in Indianapolis. Now, they're making tweaks and working on their bodies and skills in hopes of impressing at least one of the dozens of scouts and NFL executives who will be watching.

Linebacker Bruce Taylor, wide receivers Corey Fuller and Marcus Davis and offensive linemen Vinston Painter and Nic Becton have all received invitations to compete in the combine.

But each player has a different gauge on their stock and where teams might have them rated on their draft boards.

"I feel like it can always be a little higher, so that's all I'm working for now," Taylor said. "I want to continue to raise that stock."

Davis fell just short of having the most prolific receiving season in Virginia Tech history. He had 62 yards on four catches in the Hokies' 13-10 overtime win over Rutgers in the Russell Athletic Bowl. That gave Davis 953 yards for the season on 51 catches, just behind Andre Davis' record 963 yards.

Still Marcus Davis isn't sure of where that might put him in the minds of NFL team coaches and executives.

"I'm not really sure," he said. "I know it's up to me to change it, so this next all-star game invite, with this combine preparation and just little things like that, I feel that I can change it. I'm just gonna go out here and attack everything I do from now on because it's starting a new chapter to my life."

Fuller also had a breakout season after just 19 yards in one previous season for the Hokies. He transferred to Virginia Tech after running track at Kansas for two years and this year, was a pivotal cog for the Hokies with 815 yards on 43 catches. But Fuller's speed might be his best asset.

"Honestly, I have no clue where I am," Fuller said. "I'm just, from the beginning of the season I've been letting the wind blow me wherever it blows me. I think I've had a pretty good season and I just wanna continue to play."

Taylor might have the best chance to get drafted, or if nothing else, sign with a team as an undrafted free agent. Taylor, who had 76 tackles and a team-high 5.5 sacks, has already hired an agent, JL Sports.

But like the other four Hokies awaiting their chance to showcase themselves at the combine, Taylor is doing the same.

"All of that's outside if my hands," Taylor said. "The only thing I can control is going out there and giving my hundred. Tonight, I was able to make a few good plays and hopefully the scouts see that, NFL guys see that and give me a shot. I feel like I can be an asset to a team."

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