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USC's Matt Barkley: 'I'll have a stronger arm than I did'

Matt Barkley wasn't medically cleared to throw at the NFL Scouting Combine, but the USC quarterback says scouts will see something special at his upcoming pro day on March 27.

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That showcase is critical to Barkley's draft fortunes. After a shoulder injury crashed his senior season, Barkley has watched his stock drop amid questions about his arm strength. He insists those questions will be put to rest.

"It's been a long, patient journey, but I've had some time to recover now and I've been throwing quite some time at this point, I've been throwing this week (with) great velocity, great trajectory," Barkley told XEPRS-AM in San Diego, via SportsRadioInterviews.com. "It's starting to feel back to normal. No doubt, by the time pro day comes around, it'll be better than it was before. I think I'll have a stronger arm than I did."

NFL.com's Gil Brandt insists Barkley "doesn't have to be perfect at his pro day; if he looks decent, I think he can be a top-10 pick." Rumors at the combine suggested the Arizona Cardinals were "extremely impressed" with Barkley during the interview process in Indianapolis.

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Barkley acknowledged that his subpar senior campaign drew plenty of questions from teams, saying "they all ripped me on that, the differences between my senior and junior year."

Last April he likely would have been the third quarterback off the board in a tremendous class of passers. Today his future is foggy. Barkley can answer questions about his arm strength when he finally wings the ball later this month, but that alone won't tell teams if he can be trusted to anchor an NFL franchise.

Follow Marc Sessler on Twitter @MarcSesslerNFL.

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