Safety Jordan Richards was considered a mid-round draft selection heading into Thursday’s pro day at Stanford. The question now is how much he improved his stock by addressing the one crack in his game – his speed – on Thursday.
Richards, who starred at Folsom High before heading to Stanford, was timed anywhere from 4.48 seconds to 4.52 seconds in the 40-yard dash. That’s notably better than the 4.65-second 40 he ran at last month’s scouting combine in Indianapolis. Richards (5-11, 213) also improved his vertical leap – from 32 inches to 34 1/2 inches.
“It’s kind of a testament to a little more rest, a little more training and being in a more comfortable environment,” Richards said. “I’m happy with those times. I feel like that’s more representative of how I play as opposed to that 4.65 at the combine.”
Richards last year was a team captain and All-Pac-12 first-team selection who finished with 80 tackles and three interceptions. So far he’s scheduled to visit two NFL teams and has five workouts set up at Stanford.
He wasn’t the only one who improved in the Stanford sun on Thursday. Wide receiver Ty Montgomery weighed 211 pounds – 10 pounds less than he did at the combine. As might be expected, his 40 time also dropped, from 4.55 seconds in Indianapolis to as low as 4.38 seconds Thursday.
Cornerback Alex Carter (6-0, 201 pounds, 4.41 40) and inside linebacker A.J. Tarpley (6-0, 232 pounds) also stood out. Tarpley is merely hoping to get drafted. But he ran his 40 in a respectable 4.69 seconds, had a 34-inch vertical jump and had a 4.11-second time in the short shuttle.
Jason Tarver, who served as Stanford's defensive coordinator in 2011, was one of several 49ers coaches watching the event. Tarver now coaches linebackers for the 49ers.
Other 49ers coaches on hand included receivers coach Ronald Curry, special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey and defensive assistant Aubrayo Franklin.
Read Matt Barrows’ blogs and archives at www.sacbee.com/sf49ers.