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Golden Nuggets: Tepper Talks NFL Preparation

Mike Tepper reflects on his experience at this past weekend's East-West Shrine Game.  He must have been impressive, as it was announced earlier today that he has received an invitation to the NFL Combine.

"It’s kind of intimidating at first," Tepper said. "They’re staring you down, 10 feet from you. They look you up and down, they write a little note, and then they keep looking at you."

Tepper said he felt like he improved every day at practice. When the players weren’t practicing, they were attending meetings or dinners. The first couple days of the week, they are hounded by NFL personnel people, who either call them or simply knock on their hotel doors. The teams want to know as much as possible about the players’ personality and lifestyle.

"My week went from recognizing that football is a really fun sport to me to recognizing it’s a really fun sport to me but also a good way of making some money and working. This is my occupation now."

Tepper said the only negatives of the experience is that they weren’t able  to watch film of the opponent. He said he felt like he would have done better against Hardy had he been able to study his tendencies on film, even if it was just for a half-hour. Tepper also said he was disappointed  that the West team only ran five running plays while he was in the game.

That being said, Tepper said he had a great experience at the Shrine Game. He said he is "on the bubble" to receive a late invitation to the NFL scouting combine next month. He will find out about that later in the week. Otherwise, he will remain in Berkeley and work out with Cal strength and conditioning coach John Krazinski until Cal’s Pro Day on March 10.

Tepper is considered a late-round pick or free agent for the 2010 NFL Draft.

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