After a year away due to the pandemic, the NFL Scouting Combine returned in a big way. Several prospects put their best foot forward in athletic testing and on-field drills to improve their stock come draft night. Here are our winners and losers from the week in Indianapolis:
Lewis Cine, S, Georgia
Leading off the winners with a Georgia Bulldog -- settle in, because he will not be the last -- should come as no surprise. The national champions dominated the final two nights on the field. Cine tested off the charts with a 4.37 second 40-yard dash, 36.5 inch vertical jump and 133 inch broad jump. His impressive night continued while showing fluid movement through bag drills. With Notre Dame's Kyle Hamilton not testing as well as expected, Cine was the star of Sunday night.
Jordan Davis, DT, Georgia
Davis ruined it for everyone else. His 32-inch vertical jump is tied (with Kenrick Ellis) for the best by a 340-plus pound DE/DT in combine history. His 10-foot, 3-inch broad jump is the best by a 340-plus pound DE/DT in combine history ... by 15 inches. His 4.78 second 40-yard dash would have been the fastest by any prospect weighing 310-plus pounds and he is carrying an extra 31 pounds. It was a 100th-percentile testing all day long.
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Ikem Ekwonu, OT, N.C. State
Ekwonu measured in at 6-4, 310 pounds. His arms measured 34 inches, which is well above the generally accepted threshold. His athleticism tested off the charts and it began with a 4.93 second 40-yard dash. The most impressive part of the night was when the N.C. State product took to the field for drills. He glided lightly through drills while showing the ability to re-direct quickly.
Breece Hall, RB, Iowa State
Michigan State's Ken Walker III was my top ranked running back coming into the week because Hall did not exactly show breakaway speed on film. Needless to say, his 4.39 second 40-yard dash caught myself and others off-guard. Given his combination of size (5-11, 217 pounds) and speed, it will be an upset if he were not to be the first running back taken in the 2022 NFL Draft.
Desmond Ridder, QB, Cincinnati
With Liberty's Malik Willis opting out of athletic testing, Ridder was superior to all of the other quarterbacks who tested. When on-field work began, the Cincinnati product continued to look impressive. There were accuracy issues this season but some believe that it can be corrected with more consistent footwork in the pocket. If that is the case, there is no reason to believe a team may not be comfortable taking him in the first round. He certainly showed the arm strength capable of pushing the ball down the field. Ridder does not have the most commanding voice but he was very supportive of the other quarterback participants.
Travon Walker, EDGE, Georgia
Walker tested like an elite athlete. After impressing during the weigh-in at 6-5, 272 pounds with an 84 1/4 inch wingspan, the Georgia product ran a 4.51 second 40-yard dash and had a very good 6.89 second 3-cone drill. His explosiveness and agility tested off the charts all night. His movement skills were smooth through the on-field portion of the night. Given his size and athleticism, I could understand why a team would be inclined to take a chance on him over Michigan's Aidan Hutchinson or any other edge rusher in this class. I do not envision him getting out of the top 10 in the 2022 NFL Draft.
In an effort to keep the list concise, defensive tackle Devonte Wyatt, linebackers Channing Tindall and Quay Walker, and wide receiver George Pickens were excluded. Each of those Bulldogs delivered noteworthy outings.
Christian Watson, WR, North Dakota State
Watson stands at 6-4, 208 pounds so he opened a lot of eyes when he ran a 4.36 seconds 40-yard dash. His athleticism continued to shine through with a 38.5 inch vertical jump and a 133 inch broad jump.
Treylon Burks, WR, Arkansas
Burks is a prospect whose stock may not necessarily be impacted by his performance, but rather the performances of others. As a whole, the wide receiver group was fast and impressive. His 4.55 second 40-yard dash was not a bad time, but his 33 inch vertical jump, 122 inch broad jump and 7.28 second 3-cone drill were disappointing. He will always have the distinction of his size and honestly plays faster on film, but those numbers certainly are not going to help.
Matt Corral, QB, Ole Miss
The quarterback performances seem like so long ago now, but while Liberty's Malik Willis, North Carolina's Sam Howell, Ridder and others were showing off their arm strength, Corral was sidelined. He did nothing to hurt his stock, but if Howell and Ridder pass him in the rankings, that is going to cost him a lot of money.
Kingsley Enagbare, EDGE, South Carolina
The conversation surrounding Enagbare is similar to that of Burks. While his results were not as hoped, the rest of the group excelled. His 36.5 inch vertical jump was impressive but the positivity ended there. His 4.89 second 40-yard dash was slower than a few of the defensive tackles, including Davis, who has 83 pounds on the South Carolina edge rusher. Enagbare will be passed over by Minnesota's Boye Mafe and more.
Evan Neal, OT, Alabama
Neal did not participate in athletic testing and on-field drills. His decision makes sense considering Alabama's season ended later than most other teams. At the same time, Crimson Tide running back Brian Robinson Jr., linebacker Christian Harris and others did take part in the festivities. In general Neal's stock is not going to be hurt, but the performances of Mississippi State offensive tackle Charles Cross and Ekwonu may have allowed them to close the gap on Neal, who was the odds on favorite to be the No. 1 overall selection going into Indianapolis.