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Trae Waynes continues to stand out at Michigan State pro day

3/18/2015
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Journey To The Draft: Trae Waynes

Check out some of the top plays from Michigan State cornerback Trae Waynes.

EAST LANSING, Mich. -- Cramps were not an issue this time. In the process, former Michigan State cornerback Trae Waynes showed just how fast he can be.

Waynes cramped at the NFL combine in Indianapolis last month during his 20-yard and 60-yard shuttle runs, completing the 20-yard run in a much slower than anticipated time and never really getting off on the 60-yard one.

So in an effort to prove that he is just as fast as his 4.31-second 40-yard dash time indicates, Waynes chose to do both shuttle runs at Michigan State's pro day. And in two fast bursts, he may have ended any debate of who is the best cornerback prospect in the 2015 draft.

Waynes said he ran a 4.01-second 20-yard shuttle and an 11.11-second 60-yard shuttle at the pro day Wednesday. Michigan State tweeted out official times of 4.19 seconds in the 20-yard shuttle and 11.24 seconds in the 60-yard shuttle for Waynes later Wednesday.

At an event with a bunch of different stopwatches, either one is plenty fast.

"I guess a lot of people was doubting my shuttle," Waynes said. "And I wanted to see what I really could do so I felt like it was important to get it out of the way."

Waynes said the 20-yard time would have ranked seventh among cornerbacks at the combine. He said the 60-yard time would have been third among corners at the combine, behind Connecticut's Byron Jones and Clemson's Garry Peters and ahead of Tennessee's Justin Coleman. The times Michigan State reported would have ranked 15th in the 20-yard shuttle and fifth in the 60-yard shuttle at the combine.

While the shuttle times were something he wanted to personally improve on to show scouts and himself of his ability, there is little doubt he is a first-round pick in this year's draft. The 6-foot Waynes is ranked as the No. 1 cornerback and No. 15 overall prospect by ESPN/Scouts Inc., just ahead of Washington's Marcus Peters, Wake Forest's Kevin Johnson and LSU's Jalen Collins.

All four project as potential first round picks. Waynes, though, doesn't look at any of them as potential competition for his top spot. He felt he's done what he needed to in order to prove he is the best corner in the draft.

"Yeah, but I'm competing against myself," Waynes said. "I see everybody's like it's between me and [Marcus Peters], me and [Peters], but I'm not worried about that. I'm worried what I can do and what I'm going to do.

"So if he's overall the better corner, cool, but I'm still competing to just try to be the best I can."

He's also competing with someone else, too: his best friend and fellow potential first-round pick, Wisconsin running back Melvin Gordon. The two were teammates at Bradford High in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and have been supporting each other throughout the process of going from college to the NFL.

Waynes was at Gordon's pro day in Wisconsin and Gordon was initially going to show up at Michigan State's, but he told Waynes on he couldn't make it. They text messaged Wednesday morning and also after Waynes finished his workout and before he talked with reporters.

Waynes also received support from one of the guys he played with and watched at Michigan State -- Cincinnati Bengals cornerback and 2014 first-round pick Darqueze Dennard. Dennard was in attendance at the Spartans' pro day and Waynes said Dennard chided him before he did defensive back drills, saying he shouldn't drop any passes.

Overall, Waynes said he knows the most difficult part of this initial transition from college to pros ended with the pro day. Now, he can focus on individual workouts -- Carolina and Tennessee are already on the schedule -- as well as visits as he's already planning on heading to Jacksonville and Minnesota.

"It's anxious, but now I get to relax because the hardest part is over with now," Waynes said. "I just got visits and individual workouts and I know it's not going to be as crazy as the combine or this.

"So now, my main focus is to get back into football shape."