Wednesday on 10News at 6 p.m., see how coaches and football players, including VFL quarterback Josh Dobbs, are using drones to fine-tune their game on the gridiron.
Pro Day – the place where Vols hope to impress NFL scouts and land a job working on Sundays.
As part of his Pro Day preparation, University of Tennessee quarterback Josh Dobbs used a DJI phantom 3 drone to improve his passing.
“It was great I was able to film different viewpoints when we didn’t have a camera,” explained Dobbs.
The aerial perspective shows Dobbs and his trainers things he needs to work on.
“My foot work, ball placement and receivers could even watch their route running,” said Dobbs.
Those improvements are exactly what high school athletes at H3 Next Level training in Karns are working for.
“It’s sometimes easier for them to see their mistakes than us telling them,” explained Coach Devin Driscoll.
According to Driscoll, there are angles the drone can capture that cameras on the ground just can’t get.
“A father of four running down a ball in midair isn’t going to happen. What we can do is have this drone and be a safety in the sky to visualize what the quarterback is seeing,” he explained.
Driscoll helps athletes improve their passing, catching and route running in hopes of landing a college scholarship.
Webb School of Knoxville junior Hunter Green has his eyes set on playing at the next level. He says the drone has helped him improve the mental aspects of his game.
“Recognizing defenses, knowing what defense they’re in and knowing what they’re going to do before they do it. 50 percent of the game is up here honestly,” Green said, pointing to his head.
“And if you don’t have it up here, you’re not going to be able to play. That makes your brain stronger and helps you recognize things quicker,” said Green.
Parents are using drone videos on websites like Scout, Rivals and Tennessee Gridiron to get their young athletes noticed by college scouts.
“If a university or school doesn’t know about you, it’s going to be hard for them to offer you a scholarship,” Driscoll said.
Drones aren’t the only tech coaches at H3 are using – everything from GoPros to phone apps are helping these players get an edge. That same edge Dobbs was sharpening before April’s NFL draft.
In April the Steelers selected Dobbs with the 135th pick overall. In that moment, the Steelers showed that Dobbs' hard work was enough to earn a shot backing up a two time Super Bowl champion in the Steel City.
Tennessee fans will get their first look at Dobbs as the Pittsburgh Steelers take on the Cleveland browns in early August.
Before putting your drone up in the sky – you need to make sure you’re within a safe airspace and everyone on the ground needs to be participating.
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