Throughout the offseason, The Game Haus will be spotlighting some under-the-radar prospects hoping to continue their football careers on the professional level – preferably in the NFL.
Most hail from schools outside the traditional Power 5, and even from the FCS level. However, their heart and determination to reach the NFL, or any professional football league, for that matter, is larger and greater than most recognizable NFL prospects looking to make their dream a reality.
Today, Johnathan Boone is up, wide receiver from New Mexico State
By most accounts, Johnathan Boone had a solid three-year career at New Mexico State. One, that a lot of college football players would envy.
He posted 112 receptions for 1,437 yards with eight touchdowns in 36 career games. In 2018, Boone led the Aggies in catches (59), yards (715) and tied for the team lead with three receiving touchdowns.
Not bad. Not to Boone.
“I’m never really satisfied,” Boone said.
That’s the same approach Boone is taking when it comes to continuing his football career on the pro level. He’ll never be satisfied until he makes it, preferably in the NFL, but also any other professional league – CFL, XFL, Arena League or Alliance of American Football – that is willing to give him a shot.
Time is now
Like many other non-Power 5 players, Boone has to work twice as hard so NFL scouts remember his name, and perhaps more importantly, his potential. He’s not a lock to be drafted and has little room for error when it comes to proving what he’s got when the time comes.
“You’ve got to make a name for yourself,” said Boone, who had three games of at least 90 receiving yards and made eight catches in a loss to Minnesota in 2018.
“I’m doing what I can to get noticed. I’m kind of a lot like a sleeper.”
Unlike elite receiver prospects such as N’Keal Harry, A.J. Brown or Kelvin Harmon, Boone has to make sure he’s on top of his game throughout the process. That’s why he’s working and training twice a day in Florida to prepare himself for his shot. Which, most prominently, will come at New Mexico State’s pro day in March.
While this experience can be grueling and nerve-wracking, it’s also an exciting time considering the value of the potential payoff. Guys like Boone are grateful for the chance, and are doing all they can to make sure their best shot is being taken.
“I just keep my head up. I’m learning some great things,” Boone said. “It’s a business, and I’m taking the opportunity to be part of it.
“I feel confident.”