The former Wolverines wide receiver blistered a 4.48 40-yard dash Thursday, according to results provided on the school's official website. If NFL scouts recorded similar times and were duly impressed (and based on the variance of unofficial pro day times, that's not a given), it's a significant development for Funchess.
He ran a disappointing time of 4.70 at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis last month, presumably the factor that compelled him to run again on pro day. NFL Media analyst Bucky Brooks suggested that Funchess could be a man without a position in the NFL if he lacks the explosiveness needed to play receiver, and the strength to play tight end. But a 40 time of more than two-tenths of a second better than his combine effort could compel NFL clubs inclined to draft a big receiver to take a closer look at Funchess. Therein lies the other reason a strong pro-day performance was important for Funchess' draft hopes: the draft competition at wide receiver. The position might be the deepest in this year's draft. Teams that need a receiver should have an opportunity to land a talented one well beyond the first round.
The tight end class, by contrast, is a weak one. Funchess was grouped with tight ends at the combine.
At 6-foot-4, 232 pounds, Funchess spent time at both positions over the course of his Michigan career, but strictly played wide receiver as a senior in 2014. Funchess also ran a short (20-yard) shuttle time of 4.57 seconds at the Michigan pro day, an event he passed on in Indianapolis.
He rates as the No. 36 overall prospect in the draft, according to NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah, down 11 spots after his combine performance.