Former Western QB Seeks Shot at NFL

By Matt Tritten |

Published 03/21 2014 08:14PM

Updated 03/21 2014 09:08PM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) Scouts from more than 20 NFL teams were on Missouri Western's campus Friday morning for the Griffons annual pro day featuring players from all over Missouri.

But there was only one quarterback at the event trying to catch the eye of at least one NFL team.

"He just wants a shot," Justin Hoover said.

Hoover is an owner and instructor at Spin It Quarterback Academy, and has been grooming former Western QB Travis Partridge for the next level.

"I was more anxious than anything just to do it," Partridge said of his pro day. "There was no real apprehension or anything like that. It was just, go get 'em."

Partridge went after it in combine tests like the vertical jump and 40-yard dash, as well as throwing workouts to show off his arm.

"I thought it went well. It felt smooth, it looked smooth, not a lot of incompletions. It's definitely a benefit to me to work out knowing that I built myself here."

"The throws that people wanted to see today he made everyone of them, so I was really pleased with the way it went," Hoover said.

Since wrapping up his college career at Missouri Western, Partridge has begun working with Hoover, a former Pitt State quarterback.

And as a promoter of Division II football and the MIAA, Hoover sought out Partridge.

"There's more and more every year that are getting an opportunity, and that's kind of why I was drawn to Travis. Our relationship became pretty tight just knowing that the intentions were to get that name out there and really help along the way."

Now the two are working to overcome the Division II stereotype. In 2013, there weren't any D-II quarterbacks on active NFL rosters, and only one Division II quarterback's been drafted in the last decade.

"I think that there are some obstacles that you fight," Hoover said. "We talk a little bit about going into it with one strike against you because they don't know the level of competition that you've played against on a weekly basis."

Now Partridge is hoping the skills that earned him all-MIAA accolades three times will catch the eye of a team at the next level.
"The scouts I talked to today said it was very positive," Partridge said. "They're very positive and liked what they saw today so you never know. It just takes one person to like you."

"I think a workout like today gives him a really good chance to get that shot," Hoover said. "After that, he'll work hard enough to give him his best opportunity and compete hard, and that's all he can ask for."

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