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‘I’m Ready To Spread My Wings A Little Bit’: Penn State Football Safety Keaton Ellis Prepared For Potential NFL Journey

In 2019, Penn State football’s Keaton Ellis was a four-star recruit out of State College Area High School. With offers from Penn State, Notre Dame, Pitt, Buffalo, and Syracuse, he had a selection of great schools and football programs but ultimately decided to stay home and play for the Nittany Lions like his father.

Now, Ellis is preparing for the NFL Draft.

“I feel so thankful for this place,” Ellis said at Penn State’s Pro Day on Friday. “I’m just very grateful for everybody here and not only at Penn State but in State College and State High. All the support I’ve gotten, it has been truly amazing, and I’ve been really blessed.”

At Pro Day, Ellis showcased his skills in front of scouts from all 32 NFL teams. Ellis completed 13 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press, ran a 4.43-second 40-yard dash, recorded a 39″ vertical, and registered a 10’9″ broad jump. This was one of Ellis’ only opportunities to showcase his athleticism to NFL scouts as he didn’t receive an invite to the NFL Combine but that only fueled his performance at Pro Day.

“I took that added chip to my shoulder, and I worked that much harder,” Ellis said. “I know what times I can put out, and I know what I’m capable of.”

Ellis said he was aware of the possibility of not being invited to the combine, but when one door closes, another one opens. Ellis began training with cornerbacks coach Terry Smith and teammate Trey Potts, who also didn’t receive an invite to the combine. Ellis and Potts worked out five days a week and trained for Pro Day every Friday for a month leading up to the event.

“We both felt like we had an underdog mentality, so coming in each day to work was not hard for us,” Ellis said. “I’m just so thankful for [Potts and Smith] for pushing me and helping me throughout these past couple of months.”

With Pro Day in the rearview mirror, along with a five-year career at Penn State where he racked up 87 total tackles, 14 pass breakups, four forced fumbles, two interceptions, and was named a team captain in 2023, Ellis is ready for the next stage.

“I’ve been waiting. I’m excited. I’m ready to spread my wings a little bit,” Ellis said. “I’m ready to settle down somewhere different and start my new life and my new journey.”

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About the Author

Mitch Corcoran

Mitch is a junior broadcast journalism major from Johnstown, PA. He is a big Pittsburgh sports fan and in his free time he likes to listen to music, play video games, and rewatch old football games. He also loves Seinfeld, Star Wars, bucket hats, and Dua Lipa. If you want Justin Herbert propaganda or random sports content, follow him on Twitter/X @MitchCorc18 or email [email protected]

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