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Tag:Scouting Combine
Posted on: March 12, 2010 8:33 pm
Edited on: March 12, 2010 8:34 pm
 

Tebow circus even bigger; fans welcome at Pro Day

Those wanting to dissect Tim Tebow's new throwing motion won't have to hope for television coverage of Florida's Pro Day March 17.

That's because the University of Florida is opening up the event for fans to attend.

Obviously expecting large numbers, the doors will open to spectators at 8:30 am (local time) at Ben Hill Griffen Stadium in Gainesville. The on-field workout, itself, however, won't begin until 10 am.

Tebow, is, of course, the main attraction, but cornerback Joe Haden may have just as much on the line. He'll be hoping to turn in a much faster time in the 40-yard dash after running a disappointingly slow 4.58 at the Combine.

The pressure will also be on inside linebacker Brandon Spikes, who surprised some scouts with his decision to only do some portions of the workout in Indianapolis. Plagued by questions about his pure speed, Spikes' time in the 40-yard dash and fluidity in coverage drills could determine whether he makes the second round or falls to the mid third or lower. 

Tight end Aaron Hernandez didn't participate in any of the drills at the Combine, so he, too, has a lot riding on his performance March 17.

Other highly touted Gator players, including defensive end Carlos Dunlap, center Maurkice Pouncey, wide receiver Riley Cooper and safety Major Wright will likely participate in some drills, but did many of the timed drills in Indianapolis. 

Florida's decision to open the event up to fans will make the Pro Day a circus-like atmosphere for scouts.

That said, while many college teams elect to make their Pro Days a private affair for just scouts, players and select media, the move is hardly unprecedented.

Spectators were allowed to watch from the stands at the USC Pro Days I've attended each of the past two years.

Posted on: March 11, 2010 6:43 pm
 

Nation's leading rusher/Combine-snub wows scouts


The focus might have initially been on the Northwestern players at their Pro Day this morning, but the scouts representing an estimated 20 NFL teams instead got a show from the nation's leading rusher, Southern Illinois running back Deji Karim .

Karim rushed for 1,694 yards and 18 touchdowns this season for the Salukis and was noted as a player to watch after a solid showing at the Texas vs. Nation game.

Chad Reuter, who scouted the practices in person noted: Karim, however, looked powerful and quick as a runner and also a threat as a receiver on screens. He runs very low, making him hard to find and bring down.
Still, his production and solid showing at the TvN certainly didn't prepare scouts for the eye-popping workout he put forth Thursday.

Karim measured in at 5-8 3/4 and 209 pounds Thursday. He was timed by scouts in attendance at 4.38 seconds and posted a 43" vertical jump, a 10'3" broad jump and banged out 19 repetitions of 225 pounds.

Karim had been viewed as a late round or priority free agent prospect, but his spectacular results in the workout prove that his game-day prowess is no fluke. 

It is also important to note that several Salukis have gone on to enjoy NFL success -- the most recent big name being another running back with a very different style of running than the elusive Karim -- New York Giants' behemoth Brandon Jacobs.
I had referred to the Northwestern Pro Day in an earlier blog posting, but focused more on the Wildcats' players and Western Illinois cornerback Patrick Stoudamire, Jr, who, like Karim, wasn't invited to the Combine despite a sparkling collegiate career.

Stoudamire measured in at 5-10 1/4, 205 pounds. He looked fluid in positional drills and measured out well, turning in a 4.45 second dash in the 40, a 6.67 in the 3-cone, a 3.95 short shuttle and a 9'11 broad jump. Stoudamire also lifted the bar 11 times.



Posted on: March 11, 2010 1:21 pm
Edited on: March 11, 2010 1:27 pm
 

OLB Lawerence, WR Decker impress at Minn. Pro Day

NFL Draft enthusiasts should know all about Minnesota wide receiver Eric Decker by now. The 6-3, 217 pound Decker was a Biletnikof finalist in 2008 with 83 catches for 1,077 yards and 7 touchdowns. Despite being limited to only eight games due to Lisfranc sprain, he earned first team all-Big Ten honors for the second consecutive season as a senior.

The Lisfranc sprain kept Decker from working out for scouts at the Combine and also kept him from participating in the drills at Minnesota's Pro Day Wednesday. Decker will have follow-up surgery to have screws removed from his foot on Monday (March 15) and will be asked to go back to Indianapolis April 9 for a Combine "re-check."
 
Scouts know Decker can play. They want to make sure he's healthy, after repeated surgeries on his legs.

He did, however, help his cause in the bench press (19 reps) and was, as always, articulate in team and media interviews. I've been told that he had the year's highest score on the Wonderlic of all players tested at the Combine and I'm not at all surprised by this.

While Decker is certainly a known commodity, his former teammate, outside linebacker Simoni Lawrence is proving he's one to watch. I listed Lawrence as a player I thought might surprise at the Combine and he certainly did so -- ranking among the elite linebackers in the 40-yard dash (4.68), vertical (40") and broad jump (10'3").

Lawrence was even better Wednesday, clocking in at 4.56 seconds -- which would have been tied Florida State's Dekoda Watson with second fastest time recorded by any linebacker at the Combine.  Mississippi State's Jamar Chaney, a 242 pound inside linebacker, was timed at a staggering 4.52 seconds in Indianapolis.




Posted on: March 11, 2010 12:38 pm
 

WIU CB Stoudamire at Northwestern Pro Day

Western Illinois cornerback Patrick Stoudamire, Jr. will work out today at Northwestern's Pro Day.

There are expected to be several teams represented at the Pro Day considering the buzz surrounding Northwestern defensive end Corey Wootton, quarterback Mike Kafka and cornerback Sherrick McManis, among others.

Though Wootton, Kafka and McManis were all invited to the Combine, only Kafka was medically able to participate in all of the drills.

Therefore, the results of Wootton, McManis and Combine-snub Stoudamire's workout today will prove very important as scouts determine their final draft grades.


Posted on: March 10, 2010 6:38 pm
 

Okung "excellent" at Oklahoma State Pro Day

On a day when several high profile players struggled during Pro Days, Oklahoma State offensive tackle Russell Okung was characterized as having an "excellent" workout that will certainly solidify his stock as a likely top ten pick.

Okung's impressive performance was not a surprise to scouts in attendance. After all, the All-American has a history of stepping up his performance in critical situations and gave up only one sack last season.

Okung did not do all of the timed drills, as he completed many of these at the Combine. However, a pulled groin halfway through his workout in Indianapolis kept him out of the vertical and broad jump, the short shuttle and 3-cone drill.

He did complete these drills in Stillwater today, though his results in these drills were not immediately known. It was the positional drills, however, that left scouts so impressed.

According to those in attendance, Okung was smooth and balanced during pass blocking drills, showing a deep kick-step and a forceful upper body when punching the bag. Unlike some prospects, whose workouts and game film don't necessarily jive, Okung's performance was indicative of the athleticism and physicality with which he plays.

Okung was certainly the headliner today, as wide receiver Dez Bryant (injury) and cornerback Perrish Cox (suspension) were not available.

Representatives from 27 teams, including three general managers, where on hand for the Pro Day.


Posted on: March 10, 2010 6:01 pm
 

Rutgers OT Anthony Davis unable to workout

I mentioned in an earlier post about how important it was for Rutgers' star offensive tackle Anthony Davis to work out well during today's Pro Day after a disappointing week of interviews and drills during the Combine.

While Davis may have been willing, apparently his stomach was not.

Davis did not work out for scouts during the Rutgers Pro Day today due to complaints about a stomach virus.

I spoke to scouts there who weren't willing to question Davis' integrity, but did admit his inability to work out did put his already slipping stock in an even worse position.

"We had questions about him before. There are some guys at our place who are willling to give him the benefit of the doubt... But damn, sooner or later, you've got to see some fire from this kid."


Posted on: March 10, 2010 3:04 pm
 

Early results from Alabama Pro Day

I'm still waiting to get all of the results from Alabama's Pro Day, but I was sent Rolando McClain's 40-yard dash times and wanted to pass those along.

McClain, who measured in at 6-3, 254 pounds at the Combine, was clocked at 4.71 and 4.74 seconds in his two attempts at the 40-yard dash.

The times aren't so good as to improve McClain's stock, but considering that most teams feel he fits best as a 3-4 inside linebacker, the times are fine.

Cornerback Javier Arenas through his agent had informed scouts that he would not be able to perform today due to the pulled hamstring he'd suffered while at the Combine.

Also, I have been informed that Alabama, like Rutgers, offered their Pro Day live over the internet, as well.
Posted on: March 4, 2010 2:28 pm
 

S Newton the surprise star at Buffalo Pro Day

The scouts may have came for running back James Starks or wideout Naaman Roosevelt, but they left the Buffalo Bulls Pro Day yesterday talking about safety Mike Newton.

Newton, despite being a four-year starter and two-time second team All-MAC selection, was not invited to the Combine.

Newton posted numbers that rivaled the best Indianapolis had to offer -- running twice in the mid 4.4s, posting a 41" vertical jump, a 10' broad jump, 6.94 three-cone drill and a 4.17 second showing in the short shuttle.

Recognized for his reliable open field tackling and willingness to lower his shoulder into receivers running across the middle, Newton was previously characterized as good football player, but not likely to impress in workouts -- one of the reasons scouts gave as to why he wasn't among those invited to the Combine. Newton, in fact, along with Utah's Robert Johnson, were identified as two senior safeties scouts thought typically would have been invited to Indianapolis, but were left out due to the high number of juniors invited, instead.

Roosevelt, also not invited to the Combine, was solid in positional drills, but was unable to completely alleviate concerns about his deep speed, clocking in at 4.60. This time, however, was considerably better than the 4.8s scouts had timed him last spring. Roosevelt, a two-time first team MAC choice with a litany of single season and career records for the Bulls, had previously been measured at the East-West Shrine Game (6-0, 1/4, 190 pounds). He showed more explosiveness than expected, reaching 37" in the vertical jump.

Running back James Starks elected not to do any of the positional drills after an impressive all-around showing at the Combine. He did participate in running back drills, proving smooth and athletic, according to those in attendance.

 
 
 
 
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