A little over 12 months ago, Ryan Kerrigan wasn’t a consideration for NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year. He hadn’t started since Week 1 of his rookie season, and played every snap on defense.
He hadn’t even been moved to linebacker yet, or solidified his status as a first round pick. At that point, he was just a college prospect with a load of potential.
At the 2011 Senior Bowl on Jan. 29, Ryan Kerrigan was fourth on the North Team with five tackles, three for a loss, and a team-leading sack. For his performance, he was named to Purdue’s All-Time Senior Bowl Roster.
Twenty-seven days later, he turned heads at the NFL Combine, running a 4.71 40-yard dash, a 10’2″ broad jump, and 33.5 vertical leap. Two weeks after that, he capped off his prospect performance with a Purdue Pro Day that cemented him as a first round pick.
For Redskins fans that have grown to love him over the last 10 months, the following quote comes as no surprise, following his Pro Day performance:
“I just want to be somebody that goes in, plays right away, makes an impact on the team and contributes to winning for our team,” Kerrigan said.
And now that he has accomplished these aforementioned goals, he’s back at Purdue (to finish his undergraduate degree), sharing some of his expertise with the next generation of Boilermakers in the NFL.
“I’m definitely working out with a couple of my friends and old teammates here that are training for the Purdue Pro Day,” he said. “I’m working out with my old college roomates and trying to get them ready for the NFL.”
In addition to offering a professional perspective to his friends and former teammates, Kerrigan is also taking advantage of the opportunity to get back in shape:
“It hasn’t been anything real strenuous, just a little bit of cardio this week,” he told me when we spoke before the Senior Bowl. “Then I’ll probably get back into the weight training next week.”
And he has:
Kerrigan had a solid rookie season, but looks poised to take the next step with his offseason plans. Fans should learn to expect that from a player who tweets this after immediately following his last game of the season: