Not known as a burner, Poyer ran an official 4.54 40-yard dash at the combine and decided to stick with that time. He did elect to lift and perform a few other drills, improving his bench press number from 8 to 11 reps. Poyer also participated in the vertical jump (28.5-inches) and broad jump (9-foot-7), but neither matched his marks from the combine (30.5-inches vertical, 9-foot-10 broad jump). Both Poyer and Wheaton looked good during their positional drills with one scout saying "neither did much to help or hurt themselves today." - Dane Brugler, NFLDraftScout.com
In what turned out to be a harbinger of the Beavers' ill-fortuned season, however, Hardin broke his shoulder during camp last August and missed the entire campaign, thrusting Poyer into the spotlight. To Poyer's credit, he stepped up his level of play considerably, emerging in just his second season at cornerback (previously was a reserve safety) to earn Second Team Pac-12 honors with career-highs in tackles (57), passes broken up (12) and interceptions (four), including one the second interception of his career for a touchdown.
Half of Poyer's six career interceptions came against NFL-caliber quarterbacks, as he picked off Brock Osweiler twice last year and Matt Barkley in OSU's stunning 36-7 demolition of the Trojans in 2010. Not only did Poyer demonstrate the confidence and athleticism necessary to handle the one on one responsibilities expected of cornerbacks in OSU's blitz-heavy scheme, he continued in his role as the Beavers' primary returner, averaging a gaudy 14.1 yards per return on punts (including an 85-yard touchdown vs. UCLA) and carrying a 25.9 career average on kick returns.
Willing run defender and throws his body around, taking accurate angles. Quick learner as a former safety, moving to cornerback in 2010 and starting the past two seasons. Good experience in zone coverage, often moving inside to cover the slot receiver. Leader of the secondary and a fiery player. Extensive special teams experience on kickoff and punt returns. Former Oregon State baseball player.
Weaknesses: Leaner frame with limited bulk, probably will never be able to gain 190+ pounds. Not a quick-twitch athlete and lacks natural explosion. Plays too far off the line of scrimmage to protect against speed, allowing too much of a cushion and conceding underneath throws.
Tends to bite on fakes and gets overaggressive at times. Streaky tackler and often lowers his head and whiffs in the open field. Can get caught with his eyes in the backfield too much and struggles to recover after false steps. Reliable return man, but not a dynamic performer in this area. Some minor character concerns after an arrest last May for a bar fight.