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INDIANAPOLIS — One of the top defensive end/linebacker prospects in this year's draft is getting some pointers from a player who knows a thing or two about making a good first impression in the NFL.
South Carolina DE-OLB Melvin Ingram said Saturday at the Scouting Combine that he has been training with the Broncos' Von Miller at the Velocity Sports Performance facility in California to prepare for the draft, where he's projected to be selected in the first round. They were connected by agent Joby Branion, who represents both players.
"Me and him, we just try to compete against each other every day," Ingram said of Miller. "Obviously he's the Defensive Rookie of the Year, so I just try to pattern myself after him because I feel like he's had a lot of success in the NFL."
The competition between the two has extended beyond the traditional drills and workouts, though. Ingram, a powerful athlete, said he did a standing backflip a week or two ago after Miller said he didn't think Ingram could do it.
Ingram has the versatility to play defensive end or tackle in a 4-3 front and could even fit as an outside linebacker in a 3-4. He could also help on some special-teams packages, too. He was on the "hands" team — used to counter an onside kick attempt — in college.
"I'm not one to brag about anything," Ingram said. "If anybody feels like I don't have (good) hands or I can't catch, we can always prove it. We can always go outside and prove it."
He also played point guard at 225 pounds in high school at Richmond County in North Carolina.
He was asked Saturday whether he had a pass-first playing style in basketball?
Not so, he said.
"I was a scorer," Ingram said.
Ingram measured in at 6-1, 264 pounds at the Combine and will run his 40-yard dash here on Monday.