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Pro Day Journal, Ohio State: C.J. Stroud Leaves Onlookers Gushing

Quarterback C.J. Stroud and Ohio State held their pro day on Wednesday. Horseshoe Huddle was on hand and now brings you their notebook.
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For the next month and change, the question of who will be the Indianapolis Colts' next quarterback will dominate the team's narrative.

Most believe the answer to that question lies ahead in the 2023 NFL Draft, as C.J. Stroud, Bryce Young, Anthony Richardson, and Will Levis can all make a compelling argument to be picked within the first five selections.

On Wednesday, the NFL world got a good look at one of these players as Stroud and many of his Ohio State teammates took to the field at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center for their pro day.

Horseshoe Huddle's Jake Arthur and Destin Adams were in attendance and bring you their thoughts from the day.

For starters, here is a list of NFL-eligible players present for the pro day, whether or not they fully participated: 

Quarterback C.J. Stroud, wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba, defensive end Zach Harrison, center Luke Wypler, offensive tackle Dawand Jones, offensive tackle Paris Johnson Jr., safety Ronnie Hickman, cornerback Cameron Brown, defensive tackle Jerron Cage, linebacker Palaie Gaoteote, safety Tanner McCalister, long snapper Brad Robinson, tight end/fullback Mitch Rossi, defensive tackle Taron Vincent, defensive back Kellen Gerenstein, and running back Allen Smith.

—The Colts organization was not heavily represented, as area scout Mike Lacy was the only football operations member that HH saw in attendance. While it would've been nice to see a team that needs a quarterback more present for the performance, it's not an indicator that they have no interest. We all know how much general manager Chris Ballard and the Colts like Ohio State players.

—It wasn't a perfect day for C.J. Stroud, but it was impressive nonetheless. He threw over 50 passes spread out between short, intermediate, and deep targets. He threw on the move to the left, right, and stationary in the pocket. They were NFL throws. There were a couple of drops from receivers, and Stroud had some issues throwing on the move to his left, but most throws from the left-side numbers all the way to the right were beautiful. His deep ball while throwing from the pocket was especially picturesque. Stroud showed off robotic mechanics that will make multiple teams drool, especially Carolina Panthers head coach Frank Reich, who was beaming over Stroud all day.

—Jaxon Smith-Njigba had the most to prove after not competing at the Scouting Combine, and he was the only highly-rated Buckeyes prospect to run his 40, which was clocked anywhere from 4.46-4.54 seconds. Smith-Njigba also was used as the main deep route runner for Stroud's throwing session. He moved very well and should have done enough to cement himself as a first-rounder.

—While he is not yet draft-eligible until next year, Marvin Harrison Jr., the son of Colts legend Marvin Harrison, took part in Stroud's throwing session and looked terrific. His blend of size, speed, and power is something you don't often see in a receiver. His performance was noticed by everyone in attendance.

—Paris Johnson Jr. is considered a shoo-in for the top half of the first round, and he showed why on Wednesday. In positional drills, he looked powerful, tenacious, and moved great. Johnson showed off his balance of mobility and strength, as the likely first-rounder looked the part of a foundational left tackle at the next level.

—Indianapolis native and Ben Davis High School alum Dawand Jones didn't work out at the pro day following a strong Combine performance but was present throughout. Afterward, Colts representation was seen speaking with Jones and his family.

—Luke Wypler absolutely looks the part of a center at 6'2", 303, with 31-5/8" arms; compact, stocky, and sawed-off. He uses his center mass so well for that size. Wypler was aggressive on the bags and made an emphasis to finish through at one point, even hitting the bag out of Johnson's hands.

—Zach Harrison was EXPLOSIVE. He moves from laterally to vertically with ease and has tremendous bend for a player with position versatility on the defensive line. As well as putting his athleticism on full display, he performed well on the bags, showing off his utter strength. This seems like a Ballard guy, through and through.

—Palaie Gaoteote was the lone linebacker of the group, so he did a lot of his positional work with the defensive backs. He looked pretty smooth and natural doing it. At 6'2", 245, he's probably too big to move to safety but he looks like he could be a quality special teamer.

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