Gaither to audition for scouts before supplemental draft

In what will likely be his only exposure to NFL talent evaluators before Thursday's supplemental draft, University of Maryland offensive tackle Jared Gaither will audition on Monday for league scouts.

Because of Gaither's potential, most of the league's 32 franchises are expected to be represented at the workout, which will take place on the Maryland campus. Agent Kevin Pompey said that Gaither will participate in a full, combine-style workout.

"There is nothing to hide and nothing to hold back on," Pompey said. "We want to make sure teams feel comfortable with Jared, and so he'll do everything they ask him. The situation isn't perfect, but it is what it is, so you've got to make the best of it. But people are coming because they feel there is a reason to come."

Gaither did not decide to make himself available in the supplemental draft until less than a month ago, when his efforts to regain academic eligibility in the Terrapins' program came up short. His application for the supplemental draft was not approved until this week, so Gaither, who has been working with the Maryland strength and conditioning staff, hasn't had much time to prepare for a workout.

Pompey said, though, that his client's weight is in the manageable 315- to 322-pound range -- it has been listed at times as high as 350 pounds -- and added that the 6-feet-9 Gaither continues to work hard and will be ready for the start of NFL training camp later this month.

Those teams which have demonstrated a particular interest in Gaither include Atlanta, Baltimore and Jacksonville.

A starter in 17 of his 23 appearances for Maryland over the past two seasons, Gaither might challenge University of Georgia cornerback Paul Oliver for top billing in the supplemental draft. The summertime lottery, which is limited to "special cases" players, includes 10 prospects this year. In addition to Oliver and Gaither, the consensus seems to be that Nebraska offensive lineman Chris Patrick is the only other player with a viable shot of being selected.

Any team that chooses a player in the supplemental draft must forfeit its corresponding pick in the regular-phase draft in April 2008. It must also fit the player into its 2007 rookie pool allocation when he signs a contract.

Blessed with great size, Gaither has surprisingly quick feet and is regarded as an outstanding pass protector, a blocker who might project as a left tackle at the professional level. In 2005, Gaither did not surrender a sack in his 11 starts. He did not play as well in 2006, but remains an intriguing prospect.

If Gaither performs well in front of scouts, he could earn a spot in the first three rounds of the supplemental draft.

"I don't think his expectations, at this point, are focused on where he is picked in the draft, as much as they are just getting chosen and getting settled in with a team," Pompey said. "With the draft, we'll let the chips fall where they fall, and then Jared will be ready to move forward with his career."

Len Pasquarelli is a senior writer for ESPN.com.