Joe Clancy never had that ‘a-ha!’ moment where it occurred to him that he has a shot at playing professional football.
Maybe it’s because he is just a process-over-product guy and is consumed by what he needs to do to make that happen. Or, maybe it’s just not his way.
Probably a combination. Division II quarterbacks don’t usually get these kinds of opportunities.
Clancy, the Newburyport native fresh off a dream senior season at Merrimack College, is in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., at the Bommarito Performance Training Center. He is the sole Division II player among a dozen NFL Draft hopefuls – from schools like Alabama, Florida State, Missouri and Auburn – fine-tuning every conceivable facet of his game.
Clancy is not unlike other college graduates, looking to solidify a career.
“It’s gone well so far,” said Clancy, who earned his finance degree last fall. “I really don’t think about how I’m rated. I’m just thinking about the things I can control.”
That means digging deep with the specialists at Bommarito to identify and correct even the slightest flaws in his game. Clancy is one of two quarterbacks at the camp, along with James Franklin of Missouri, which is in the second of six weeks.
He talks about improving the intricacies like dropping back properly, using his whole body to throw, when and what to have for meals. He treats it much like a workday and expects to come away a new quarterback, a new man.
“There are coaches for every position here,” he explained. “There are strength coaches, speed coaches, experts on nutrition, everything.”
There are some big names among Bommarito alumni: Eli Manning, Matthew Stafford, Tony Romo. There are currently 65 Division II alumni on active NFL rosters, but no quarterbacks.