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Tag:Lamar Miller
Posted on: March 8, 2012 8:51 pm
Edited on: March 8, 2012 9:13 pm
 

Former 'Canes show support at Pro Day

The Miami Hurricanes might not have any first-round prospects, but they have a solid group of draftable players, including three Top 100 prospects according to NFLDraftScout.com, who drew 66 scouts from the NFL and CFL to Thursday's Pro Day.

The Hurricanes have been known for their strong support from alumni as well, and NFL players Jimmy Graham, Reggie Wayne, Santana Moss, Antrel Rolle, Matt Bosher, Orlando Franklin, Richard Gordon and DeMarcus Van Dyke took in the workout as well, according to the school's website.

The main draw is running back Lamar Miller, who is battling with former ACC foe David Wilson to be the second back off the board behind Alabama's Trent Richardson. Miller skipped the 40-yard dash after running a blistering 4.4 at the Scouting Combine, but he did post a 35.5-inch vertical jump and a 6.94-second L Drill. He's currently the No. 40 overall prospect according to NFLDraftScout.com ratings.
 
Defensive end Olivier Vernon and offensive lineman Brandon Washington chose only run the 40-yard dash, posting a 4.68 and 5.07, respectively, and standing on the rest of his Combine numbers.

Quarterback Jacory Harris, defensive lineman Marcus Forston, linebacker Sean Spence and wide receivers Travis Benjamin and Tommy Streeter decided to stand on all their agility test numbers from Indianapolis.

Cornerback Lee Chambers, a converted running back trying to catch the attention of scout, grabbed the spotlight with a 4.41 40 and a 40.5-inch vertical jump. Defensive end Adewale Ojomo also posted an impressive 31.5-inch vertical.

Wide receiver LaRon Byrd ran a 4.46 40, third amongst athletes tested at UM's workout. He also posted a 35-inch vertical and bench pressed 225 pounds 15 times.

Tight end Chase Ford, a fringe prospect in need of a strong workout, failed to stand out with a 4.76 40, 33-inch vertical and benching 225 pounds 20 times. Offensive lineman Joel Figueroa managed a workout-best 32 reps.

Wide receiver Aldarius Johnson, a high school teammate of Harris' who stood out at the NFLPA all-star event, was allowed to work out at Thursday on campus and was clocked in the low 4.4s at nearly 6-2, 208 pounds. Johnson was suspended for the 2011 season by new head coach Al Golden and though allowed to participate, his numbers from the workout were not among those listed by Miami's official athletic website.

Posted on: February 26, 2012 2:16 pm
Edited on: February 26, 2012 3:22 pm
 

James, Rainey run 4.45 40s - officially

Florida running back Chris Rainey, who confidently said he expected to run a 4.1-second 40-yard dash and "definitely" would break the Combine record, posted an unofficial 4.37 on his first attempt Sunday. That equaled Oregon's LaMichael James for the fastest times among the running backs so far. (40-yard dash results)

Miami's Lamar Miller is being credited with a 4.38 and Virginia Tech's David Wilson, both expected to be second-round picks, ran an unofficial 4.40. 

The vast majority of the unofficial times have been around a tenth of a second faster than the "official" time released later by NFL.com through National Football Scouting.

As we've noted during the event, NFLDraftScout.com data shows Trindon Holiday's 4.21 in 2010 as the fastest Combine time since 2000.  

UPDATE: Miller was able leapfrog to the head of the running back class when the "official" 40 times were posted by NFL.com, being credited with a 4.40, while Rainey and James were dinged .07 from their unofficial handheld times down to 4.45. San Diego State's Ronnie Hillman was also credited with an official 4.45 after having a first clocking of 4.41.
 

Posted on: February 22, 2012 7:20 pm
Edited on: February 23, 2012 10:32 am
 

Knee scope will sideline RB Richardson at Combine

The competition to be the second running back selected in the 2012 NFL Draft will go from one of the more intriguing second tier topics of this week's Scouting Combine to one of the major stories with news Wednesday that Alabama runner Trent Richardson, the unquestioned top talent at the position, won't be able to perform in Indianapolis. 

Richardson, NFLDraftScout.com's No. 6 rated overall prospect, underwent minor knee surgery a few weeks ago after initially injuring his knee while preparing for the BCS National Championship, according to NFL.com's Jason LaCanfora

Though Richardson won't be able to participate in the athletic drills at the Combine, according to the report, he is expected to be able to participate in Alabama's March 7 Pro Day

(LaCanfora has since reported via Twitter that Richardson will be working out on March 27, raising questions about his availability for Alabama's original Pro Day.)

Assuming that team doctors don't find reason to believe that Richardson will be troubled by the knee in the future, his stock isn't likely to be impacted, according to a league source who shared his thoughts under the condition of anonymity.

"If the doctors say he's okay, it won't change anything. [Richardson] is an elite talent," the scout wrote in a text message.

Considering the physicality with which he plays, however, the injury certainly will be checked out thoroughly by every team. Richardson suffered a slight MCL tear in 2011 and underwent surgery as a sophomore in high school after tearing ligaments in his ankle.

  Richardson is currently slated to be a top five draft pick by Dane Brugler and I. Our colleague Pete Prisco has Richardson slipping a bit further but still has the Crimson Tide star earning a pick in the top half of the first round

Since beating LSU in the BCS Championship, it has been a tough few weeks for several highly rated Alabama players. Prior to news of Richardson's injury, Tide seniors Josh Chapman (nose guard) and Mark Barron (safety) each missed the Senior Bowl due to injuries. Junior cornerback 'Dre Kirkpatrick was arrested (and ultimately had the charges dropped) for marijuana possession.

Richardson finished third in the Heisman voting in 2011 behind only Robert Griffin III and Andrew Luck. He won the Doak Walker Award as the nation's elite running back, rushing for 1,583 yards and scoring 23 touchdowns, including the only touchdown in the BCS Championship Game. 

NFLDraftScout.com currently lists Virginia Tech's David Wilson, Miami's Lamar Miller, Boise State's Doug Martin and Washington's Chris Polk as the other four backs behind Richardson as the top five talents at the position for the 2012 draft.  
Posted on: February 6, 2012 11:30 am
Edited on: February 6, 2012 11:32 am
 

Washington RB Polk expects to run in the 4.4s

Alabama junior Trent Richardson is universally considered the top running back in the 2012 draft.

Ask five scouts which runner will follow him on draft day and you are liable to get five different answers. Some are enamored with the pure speed of Miami's Lamar Miller or Virginia Tech's David Wilson. Others like the all-around game of Boise State senior Doug Martin. With an MVP-performance in the Senior Bowl that showcased his potential as a returner, Cincinnati's Isaiah Pead is making a late run up the board. 

A so-so performance in Mobile has taken some of the luster off of Washington's Chris Polk, but if he runs as fast in workouts as he and those close to him expect him to, the former Husky will certainly be in the mix.

Preparing interviews for Lindy's NFL Draft Preview scheduled to hit newstands March 1, I asked Chris at the Senior Bowl what he expects to run in the all-important 40-yard dash.

He smiled and replied simply, "Faster than any of you all think."

Pressed to be more specific, Polk elaborated.

"From what everyone has been saying and I've been reading, I guess speed is one of the big questions everyone has about me. I'm not that worried about it, to be honest with you. I know how fast I am. I expect to run something in the 4.4s."

Though Polk ran for 4,049 yards for the Huskies over his career, finishing second behind only former first round pick Napoleon Kaufman (4,106) in school history. Though he's shown the ability to break free for several long scores over his career (four TDs of 50+ yards), his straight-line speed is considered one of the question marks on an otherwise sparkling résumé. 

Polk is currently preparing for the Combine at Athletes Performance Institute in Los Angeles. If his effort there result in a 40-yard dash time of 4.50 seconds or less, teams won't be able to ignore the fact that his game-tape, frankly, is more impressive than any of the other backs vying to follow Richardson.  

Posted on: January 2, 2012 4:03 pm
Edited on: January 6, 2012 3:42 pm
 

Huskies RB Polk entering NFL Draft

Fourth-year junior running back Chris Polk is leaving the University of Washington a year early to enter the 2012 NFL Draft.

"Chris had a terrific career at Washington and deserves the opportunity to move on to the next level," Huskies coach Steve Sarkisian said in a statement. "We wish him nothing but the best in what I'm sure will be a great professional career."

Polk is the No. 4 running back eligible for the 2012 draft and the No. 56 overall prospect, according to NFLDraftScout.com, behind only Alabama's Trent Richardson, Miami's Lamar Miller and David Wilson from Virginia Tech. All are underclassmen, with Miller already declaring his intention to enter the draft. Richardson and Wilson have yet to play their bowl games.

Polk, who has already earned his bachelor's degree in American ethnic studies, leaves as the second all-time leading rusher in Huskies history with 4,049 yards in 40 games. He is behind only Napoleon Kaufman (4,106) on the school's career rushing list. Polk's 799 career carries and average 101.2 rushing yards per game are school records.

Polk is a strong interior runner who has the burst to get through the line and the power to break tackles. He's not a naturally explosive outside runner, and is primarily a North-South runner who has good vision for cutback lanes. Polk lacks true breakaway speed, but has plenty of speed to rip off yards in chunks. He doesn't get caught from behind often.

Coaches will value Polk's willingness and competency as a blocker as well. Like most college backs, he has to work on his technique, but Polk doesn't shy away from oncoming blitzers. 

Polk also increased his versatiliy by becoming far more involved in the Huskies' passing attack in 2012.


Posted on: December 16, 2011 3:45 pm
Edited on: January 6, 2012 3:47 pm
 

Miami loses two more to NFL

A couple of weeks ago I predicted that the first underclassment to declare early for the NFL draft might come from Miami and Southern California. This was not only because of the fact that both programs are consistent producers of talent but also because neither was going to be playing in a bowl game this year.

I anticipated a few 'Canes and Trojans might leave early. Instead, it is quickly proving to be a case of mass exodus from both programs -- which continued on Friday with the news that offensive tackle Brandon Washington and defensive end Olivier Vernon were leaving Miami for the NFL.

They join redshirt sophomore running back Lamar Miller, wide receiver Tommy Streeter and defensive tackle Marcus Forston in former 'Canes leaving Al Golden's program for the NFL since the end of the season.

Southern Cal, likewise has already seen two prospects leave early -- offensive tackle Matt Kalil and defensive end Nick Perry. Quarterback Matt Barkley and safety T.J. McDonald are also known to be strongly considering making the leap.

Of the two newest underclassmen leaving Coral Gables, Washington is the more highly regarded pro prospect. The 6-4, 320 pound Washington has starred for the Hurricanes at left tackle and left guard. Though he played well outside at tackle this season, most project him back inside at guard in the NFL. Washington has a short, stock build. He is surprisingly light on his feet and plays with intensity and physicality. The feeling among scouts is that Washington could play outside at the next level, but he could become a Pro Bowl caliber guard.

Washington had previously told members of the media that he was returning to school, explaining that he had not even petitioned the NFL for a grade, was excited about the progress Miami was making and was committed to earning the college degree that no one else in his family had previously attained.

The lure of NFL dollars, however, must have proven too much for Washington. He is currently behind only Stanford's David DeCastro (who also is leaving school early) among NFLDraftScout.com's 2013 guard prospects.

Vernon is a very surprising choice to leave early considering that he was suspended for the first six games of the season due to taking accepting innappropriate benefits from a booster and registered just 18 tackles on the season. The 6-3, 265 pound true junior had flashed earlier in his career, recording 10.5 tackles for loss and six sacks a year ago. Vernon has an explosive burst off the snap but still needs a lot of technical work to earn consistent playing time at the pro level. He is viewed as a prospect potentially capable of making the switch to outside linebacker in the 3-4 scheme, which does help his cause.

At this early point, however, Vernon is only ranked 29th among defensive ends in the 2013 class and thus not even a surely draftable commodity.
Posted on: December 5, 2011 6:42 pm
Edited on: January 6, 2012 3:51 pm
 

'Canes WR Streeter takes leap of NFL faith

Miami Hurricanes defensive tackle Marcus Forston declaring for the NFL Draft didn't cause big ripples. The surprise was that wide receiver Tommy Streeter decided to join him and sign with agent Drew Rosenhaus, according to CBSSports.com's Bruce Feldman.

Streeter will start off as a projected third-round pick by NFLDraftScout.com. But at 6-feet-5 and 215 pounds, he has the potential to be a workout warrior. Right now, his rating is based almost solely on potential.

Entering his junior season, Streeter had only five career catches. But he exploded for 46-811-8 in 2011 as he became high school teammate Jacory Harris' favorite target. The big key for Streeter will be his workouts - he doesn't have a verified 40-yard dash time yet and this year's receiver class has the potential to be quite deep. If Streeter doesn't run in the 4.4-second range and otherwise work out extremely well, he could easily slide into mid-round status.

For perspective, the late-bloomer wasn't rated among NFLDraftScout.com's top 20 junior wide receivers all year.

Forston leaving a year early was pretty much expected. While he has been dominating at times, he has also finished two of the past three seasons injured. He is currently projected as a third- or fourth-round pick by NFLDraftScout.com, but easily to vault into second-round consideration if he can prove he's fully recovered from the knee injury that ended his season in October.

Forston was one of eight players who was suspended for Miami's opening game at Maryland because of taking extra benefits from a former booster.

The Hurricanes are still waiting on decisions from redshirt sophomore running back Lamar Miller and safety Ray Ray Armstrong, who could be potential first-round picks if they leave school early.

Miller is projected as the No. 2 running back eligible for the 2012 draft behind Alabama's Trent Richardson. Armstrong is the No. 2-rated strong safety behind the Crimson Tide's Mark Barron.

--Derek Harper, Executive Editor, NFLDraftScout.com.   


Posted on: November 28, 2011 3:33 pm
Edited on: January 6, 2012 3:51 pm
 

Bowl bans may push USC/Miami youngsters to NFL

With many of the FBS teams finishing up their seasons last weekend, the march to the NFL draft in April is taking a turn onto a new road -- the early pathway to the pros.

Each year there are dozens of underclassmen who petition the NFL Advisory Committee for the grades that will help them determine whether they should leave school early for a chance at NFL riches or return to school for another year.

Generally speaking, most underclassmen wait until after the bowl games to make these requests.

Bowl bans for USC and Miami, however, mean that their underclassmen could be all the more vulnerable to the pressures placed by family, friends and prospective agents. While players all over the country are busy preparing for their final game or anxiously waiting to hear what bowl their team has been invited to play in, the likes of Matt Barkley, Matt Kalil and Lamar Miller (among others) may get convinced that the extra time could give them an advantage in preparation time for the Combine and other workouts.

Typically, once a few prospects begin to declare themselves eligible for the NFL draft, the floodgates open. Usually some of the first names to make it official are players who announce their thoughts immediately following a bowl game.

This year, some of the biggest names potentially available in 2012 could have made their intentions known long before the first bowl game kicks off.

 
 
 
 
The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com