Mark Crammer/Anderson Independent-Mail/AP
Former Clemson defensive end Da’Quan Bowers ran the 40-yard dash in 4.9 seconds during the Tigers’ pro day on Friday.
CLEMSON -- Before running his 40-yard dash Friday morning at Memorial Stadium, Da'Quan Bowers jogged through several practice runs and then fidgeted for several moments while crouched at the starting line.
With so much at stake before scouts from at least 20 NFL teams, the former Clemson defensive end seemed to sense the importance of the moment and struggled to get comfortable.
Even if the NFL is headed to a rookie wage scale, there figures to be millions of dollars lost in a fall from a top-five selection, where Bowers was originally predicted to be drafted, to the middle of the first round. Some analysts believe Bowers' draft stock is falling due to questions about his knee.
Coming off postseason surgery to repair a torn meniscus, Bowers did not work out at the NFL combine or Clemson's pro day last month.
Bowers elected to move his workout to Friday, when he posted disappointing 40-yard dash times ranging from 4.96 to 4.85 seconds.
Bowers did post a respectable 7.1-second time in the three-cone drill and recorded a 34.5-inch vertical jump.
"I'm 100 percent," said Bowers, who weighed 277 pounds. "The knee is fine. I still have a lot of work to do. I'm still strengthening and getting it back to where it needs to be. But it's not hurting. It's not giving me any problems."
Bowers revealed he injured his knee against N.C. State, but played the final four games of last season with the injury.
NFL Network analyst Mike Mayock was in Clemson to observe the workout, and said more important than the Friday workout is Bowers' game tape and his knee passing medical reviews.
"He didn't run a great 40," Mayock said. "I'm sure he would have liked to have run in the 4.7s. ... His positional workout wasn't as good as people wanted to see, but I think he fatigued. He's coming off surgery. He's not in that kind of shape."
Mayock watched North Charleston native and North Carolina product Robert Quinn work out Thursday. Quinn bettered Bowers' testing numbers, running a 4.6- second 40 in Chapel Hill and posting a 10-foot, 5-inch broad jump. Some analysts speculate Quinn could be passing Bowers on draft boards.
"It's too early to say anyone is sliding," Mayock said. "(Bowers' knee) is going to force to teams to go back and examine him. I thought I'd see some more quickness and explosion, but again I want to give the kid the benefit of the doubt. I thought at times his play last season was phenomenal. I would like to see him more consistent. But if you put together a (highlight) tape, he and Robert Quinn have as good a (highlight) tape as anybody in the country, but you want to see it on every snap."
Arizona head coach Ken Whisenhunt, Buffalo Bills general manager Buddy Nix -- who selected Clemson's C.J. Spiller ninth overall last April -- and Atlanta GM Thomas Dimitroff watched the workout.
Dimitroff downplayed concerns over Bowers' knee even though Sports Illustrated reported last week two teams had taken Bowers off their draft boards.
"He'll do very, very well in the league," Dimitroff said. "There's still a healing process there, especially with a big guy. But I thought he showed well out there."
Bowers is hoping to top late Clemson defensive end Gaines Adams as the highest selected Tiger in the modern draft. Adams was selected fourth overall in 2007. Banks McFadden was selected fourth overall in 1939.
If Bowers is selected in the top 10, it will be the first time Clemson has produced top-10 picks in consecutive drafts (Spiller was ninth overall last year).
Bowers declared for the draft after Clemson's bowl loss.
Bowers led the nation in sacks (15 1/2) and tackles for loss (26) en route to ACC defensive player of the year honors. Bowers was a unanimous first-team All-American, just the fourth in program history, and earned the Bronko Nagurski Award, given to the country's top defensive player.
P-G's Seckinger to redshirt
Clemson signee Stanton Seckinger will not greyshirt as originally planned and will redshirt his first year with the Clemson football program.
The Porter-Gaud product will join a number of young talented receivers in summer camp, including five-star rated incoming freshmen Sammy Watkins and Charone Peake. At 6-5, Seckinger figures to be the tallest Clemson wide receiver on the roster.
Seckinger had a prolific high school career, catching 105 passes for over 1,800 yards and scoring 26 TDs as a senior.
Follow Travis Sawchik on Twitter @travis_sawchik.