By Otis Kirk
Former Arkansas defensive tackle Armon Watts went from a role player to earning an invite to the 2019 NFL Scouting Combine.
At Monday’s pro day at Arkansas he didn’t do everything for the NFL scouts. Did you feel your combine was good enough you didn’t have to do everything today?
“Yeah, I know I didn’t bench at the combine,” Watts said. “I wanted to do that. I tweaked my hamstring at Indy is why I wasn’t out here doing the stuff. I’m getting healthy for a few teams and visits. That’s what I’m focused on now.”
That tweak came at your last on-field event at the combine?
“Yes, very last position drill,” Watts said. “It’s getting better though.”
What was that combine experience like?
“It was good,” Watts said. “For me, it was like a dream. Especially the up and downs I had here. For me to do that was big for me. Talked to a lot of teams. Lot of good feedback. It was a good experience.”
What was those interviews and feedback you had like?
“Basically just to test your football IQ to see what type of player you are on paper.” Watts said. “Show you some good film, bad film, character issues, anything like that. Just see what kind of body language you had.”
Do you feel the work you did here today went well?
“I wanted to 20 (bench press) and I got 20 so that’s exactly what I needed,” Watts said. “I’m happy with that.”
Before the start of last season you probably had no idea you would be there?
“It’s like a dream,” Watts said. “I don’t even know if it has hit me yet. Just to see some of these guys out here and what they’re doing where I’m at is huge for me. I’m grateful for every day.”
Why it seems like a dream for Watts is easy. In five years at Arkansas, he played in 27 games with 11 starts. All his starts came in 2018. Following a redshirt season in 2014, Watts played in 15 games in three years. He played in 12 as a senior. As a senior, Watts had 49 tackles, including 25 solo, 8.5 for loss, seven sacks, two forced fumbles, four quarterback hurries and two pass breakups. Prior to 2018, he had seven tackles and one quarterback hurry.
What do you have between now and the draft?
“I have got a few team workouts lined up and team visits,” Watts said. “Get those out of the way and do the best I can there.”
Can you say who those visits are to?
“I’m not sure,” Watts said. “Quite a few lined up.”
What was the craziest thing you got asked at the combine?
“Lucky for me I didn’t get anything crazy, but it was a lot of situations where you were in the room with 15 guys,” Watts said. “It’s nervous when they are showing your good plays and bad plays in front of coaches and GMs. I got nothing crazy, but you do have to prepare for it. That was the hardest thing probably.”