This was a new-look Tommy Armstrong.
After starting 44 career games at quarterback for the Huskers over the last four seasons, the Cibolo, Texas, product spent a few hours Tuesday afternoon working out mainly as a wide receiver as part of Nebraska’s pro day. Armstrong did a little passing and some work as a running back but said he was happiest with his speed and agility drills inside Cook Pavilion.
“I got winded here and there, but I think overall I did a pretty good job,” Armstrong said. “As far as right now, I guess you can tag me as an athlete going forward. But I think overall it was a pretty good day at the positions I worked at.”
After a hamstring injury prematurely ended his collegiate career in November, Armstrong said he was “well past 100 percent” for his professional tryout. He estimated his 40-yard dash time at 4.53 or 4.55 seconds after aiming for a 4.7. He said he last ran the drill as a freshman, when he clocked a 4.6.
“I’m older, but I’m faster, so I’m OK with that,” Armstrong said with a laugh. “It was a great feeling just being out here. You never take days for granted, but for myself, it meant a lot, definitely, being able to overcome the hamstring tear and be healthy enough to come out here and do what I did.”
The longtime quarterback praised NU wide receivers coach Keith Williams for investing time into developing him at a new position over the past few months. Armstrong said he’s down to about 215 pounds after playing his senior year closer to 230 thanks to all the running Williams put him through.
“I’m willing to work as hard as I can to improve,” Armstrong said. “I think having the right mindset and the right attitude going forward is the key. I got all my options open.”
Armstrong found his routes becoming crisper as muscle memory set in. He said Tuesday’s effort confirmed to him he’s totally healthy as well as in shape.
From where he stood, teammate Brandon Reilly reached a similar conclusion observing his former quarterback.
“He kind of had his hands full today, but from what I saw, he looked good,” Reilly said. “And I’m sure he’s going to get some opportunities as well.”