Tag:NFL combine
Posted on: February 28, 2011 7:43 pm
Edited on: February 28, 2011 8:08 pm

Cam Newton 'struggled' in some team interviews

Posted by Rob Rang

Cam Newton's struggles in the throwing session at the Combine Sunday have already been well documented. His strategy of reading a prepared statement and refusing to acknowledge the extent of the "mistakes" he made earlier in his career while at Florida has been hotly contested.

Even more of a concern, however, is that the reigning Heisman winner is also struggling answering football questions during team interviews at the Combine.

NFLDraftScout.com has learned that at least two teams gave Newton poor grades for his "football character" following interviewing him at the Combine. Newton, according to league sources, had a difficult time drawing up plays and how to react to different defensive schemes when asked to work on the white board.

There is no denying Newton's potential, but his success in spread option offense much simpler than anything he'll see in the NFL continues to be his greatest challenge. Not all teams are convinced he has the ability to make the adjustment to the complex defensive schemes he'll see at the pro level.

This entry was cross-posted from Rob Rang's NFL Draft Blog. For more NFL news, rumors and analysis, follow @cbssportsnfl on Twitter and subscribe to our RSS Feed.
Posted on: February 28, 2011 7:31 pm

Julio Jones to have surgery on foot fracture

Posted by Will Brinson

Julio Jones, CBSSports.com's second-ranked wide receiver, impressed a lot of people with his blazing speed at the combine. Well, it just got even better: he did what he did with a fracture in his foot.

That's according to Charley Casserly, who reports that Jones went through the entire combine with a fracture in his foot and will now surgery, which will require a screw to be inserted in his foot and which will result an eight-week recovery.

Casserly said he expects Jones to be ready for the start of the season and therefore shouldn't fall too much in the draft.

In fact, there's also a good argument that Jones' value should go up after his impressive performance with such a tough injury.

It had previously been reported that the Rams would "sprint to the podium" if Jones was sitting there when they were on the clock with the 14th overall pick -- the likelihood of that happening should be pretty heavily impacted by how he recovers from his surgery.

Rob Rang has him going to the Rams at 14, while Chad Reuter's spots Jones to the Redskins at 11th overall; considering just how much his stock is rising, the former might not even be an option once the draft rolls around.

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Posted on: February 28, 2011 5:25 pm

Ear on Football: Weekend combine winners/losers

Posted by Will Brinson

Don't call it a comeback, kid -- after a (much-needed) podcasting break, Andy and I return with a rebranded podcast ("Ear on Football," although I somehow botch the name at the beginning, because, well, it's Monday) and a fresh take on the combine's weekend action.

Who were the winners? Who were the losers? Does the combine actually matter? Are Carolina Panthers fans talking themselves into taking Cam Newton No. 1 overall? And what's the deal with airplane peanuts?

Okay, we don't actually answer that last question, but hit the play button to find out about the rest and don't forget to Subscribe via iTunes.

If you can't view the podcast, click here to download .
Posted on: February 28, 2011 4:23 pm
Edited on: February 28, 2011 7:18 pm

NFL combine scene: Monday

Posted by Andy Benoit

Want more combine action? Check out our podcast breakdown of the weekend, and don't forget to Subscribe via iTunes.

INDIANAPOLIS -- If ever there was confirmation to the idea that the combine has very little to do with the actual workouts, the Monday morning atmosphere in Indy would be it. Defensive players are still going through drills, but virtually all of the media has gone home. Credentials aren’t even issued past Sunday. Player interviews (with the media) are over. Many offensive coaches have left town, as well. And while most coaches are observing the workouts live, it’s not uncommon to see a head coach walking around a hotel lobby during the workouts. You’d think the talent evaluators were watching every precise detail of the events on the field; that’s not the case.

I’m still in town meeting with as many coaches and front office execs as possible. Many of the meetings are previously scheduled, though plenty of times I’ve found myself walking up to someone out of the blue and saying hello. That’s what I did with Jack Del Rio and John Elway as they were heading to Lucas Oil Stadium this morning. This approach can be a hit (Del Rio) or a miss (Elway). It’s nothing personal, just a timing thing.

It’s best to approach these guys near their hotel; the closer they get to the stadium, the more autograph hounds they encounter. The autograph hounds are interesting. A lot of them have stacks of blank white photo papers, which would indicate that the photo part of many autographed photos is actually printed after the signature is acquired. Asking someone for an autograph is a lot like carrying around a superhero-themed lunchbox: it’s great if you’re a little kid and painfully pathetic if you’re a grown man. Sadly, there have been plenty of painfully pathetic grown men running around the Lucas Oil Stadium area these past few days.

Fun as it is to drop a head coach’s name, the best conversations are with assistants and scouts. Most of them aren’t technically allowed to talk to you, though. (That could just be a convenient way to decline a conversation, too.) But plenty of them talk anyway. The primary value of it all is simply laying the groundwork for a future relationship. The secondary value is learning about the game and league from these experts firsthand.

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Posted on: February 28, 2011 12:46 pm

Moch blazes to a 4.44 in the 40

Dontay Moch ran a 4.44 40 at the combine (US Presswire). Posted by Eye on Football staff

INDIANAPOLIS -- Dontay Moch put up an awfully impressive 40-yard number this morning. The Nevada product blazed to a 4.44 time, the best time produced among DEs ever (or, at least, since 2000).

Moch, who ranks as the eight-best DE in the CBSSports.com rankings (and No. 86 overall), apparently ran a sub 4.3 during his junior Pro Day, and with speed like that (and considering he’s completely undersized for a prototypical 4-3 DE), he’s most likely to be used as a 3-4 outside LB.

The 2009 WAC defensive player of the year obviously is speedy, but he also is considered to have stiff hips and can’t change directions very well.

Writes Chad Reuter on CBSSports.com, “although Moch's quickness is undeniable when watching his tape, scouts wonder about his motor, pass-rush moves and ability in coverage as a stand-up 3-4 linebacker. A team might reach for him in the second round, but it is not unreasonable to believe he could still be available in the fourth.”

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Posted on: February 28, 2011 12:15 pm

Casey Matthews out for rest of NFL combine

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Oregon LB Casey Matthews, the younger brother of Packers standout LB Clay Matthews, will miss the rest of the NFL combine after injuring his shoulder during Saturday’s bench press, according to NFL.com’s Steve Wyche.

Though he’s not the athletic specimen his brother is, CBSSports.com ranks him as the seventh-best inside LB in the draft (and No. 162 overall).

Matthews obviously has good name recognition, but he really made a case for himself during the 2011 BCS championship game when he impacted QB Cam Newton’s ability to make plays and stripped him of the ball late in the game.

One potential knock on Matthews is that he played in a defensive system at Oregon in which he blitzed a ton, probably inflating his sack numbers. Not that a wonderful NFL combine would have dashed that negative, but still, it has to be disappointing for a LB who could be selected on the second day of the Draft.

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Posted on: February 28, 2011 8:37 am

Rams scout charged with public nudity

Driscoll Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Rams scout Luke Driscoll – better known as the guy who allegedly urinated on a downtown Indianapolis building before apparently exposing himself to a female police officer – has been charged with public nudity only and not public intoxication.

According to the St. Louis Post Dispatch, which spoke with Kendale Adams, the public information officer for the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, the misdemeanor public nudity charge is punishable by no more than 60 days in jail* and a fine up to $500.

*Again, if you have to take a leak on a building, it’s best not to get caught doing it by an officer of the law.

Driscoll, 33, was arrested at 3:20 a.m. Friday morning and spent the rest of the night in jail. He was released Saturday and went back to work at the NFL combine.

St. Louis GM Billy Devaney said the team is investigating the matter. As is, I’m sure, the NFL, which very well could apply the rules for violating its personal conduct policy to this case.

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Posted on: February 28, 2011 12:04 am

Newton 'frustrated' by throwing performance

Posted by Will Brinson

Cam Newton was the unquestioned star of the weekend combine action. Even though his on-field performance left many a question to be answered, he drew the biggest media crowds, did well at his press conference and proved what a ridiculous athlete he is.

Naturally, then, people were curious as to what he thought about his throwing session. The answer: "frustrated."

"I underestimated the timing aspect of playing quarterback," Newton said on set with the NFL Network crew. "You had receivers from the SEC, the SWAC, the MAC. I was somewhat frustrated, but at the same time, I was having fun out there."

The weird thing about the combine, as Mike Mayock pointed out, is that quarterbacks aren't being judged on whether or not they complete passes (which is what they're used to doing) but whether or not they can throw a pass to a particular spot (which is what they're not necessarily trained to do).

Therefore, while Newton clearly struggled passing the ball in a manner he's not entirely used to, it's still likely his draft stock won't slip that far.

Even some of the biggest misses won't sink his chances of being a top-five pick, because for all the criticism he'll take for needing development, there's equal praise about his ability to utilize his athletic prowess to overcome any problems.

So it's understandable to frustrated, but he probably shouldn't be too worried.

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