Sundayâs action is in the books at the 2017 NFL Scouting Combine, which means thereâs only one day left for prospects to impress potential employers.
The performances by the defensive linemen and linebackers were really impressive, serving as yet another reminder just how crazy athletic kids really are coming into the NFL Draft in 2017.
It used to be guys would show up at the combine as âtweenersâ -- players without an absolutely specific position -- and they would get dinged for it. Now you want guys who are tweeners for their versatility.
Sunday was a prime example of that, with many different players capable of moving around in different spots showing up, as well as a number of prominent guys who flashed massive amounts of athleticism during the on-field action.
Letâs look at some winners and losers from Sundayâs action.
Myles Garrett: It shouldnât be surprising that Garrett dominated at the combine. Heâs a really athletic guy. But Sunday was more than just Garrett impressing people -- he might have put the fear of God into the Cleveland Browns when it comes to the No. 1 pick. There are many things that Cleveland needs, but itâs hard to imagine them actually passing on Garrett given what he did at the combine.
Garrett is 272 pounds but fast as lightning, running a 4.64 40-yard dash on Sunday.
To put that in perspective relative to another great pass rusher, consider this:
Or just consider what it means for the quarterbacks he might be chasing.
Maybe the most impressive thing Garrett did? He had a 41-inch vertical jump. Absurd.
None of this ultimately matters when it comes to playing football, per se, but Garrett has the production and has been a top defensive prospect for virtually the entire season. He showed up for a critical job interview and blew people away with his athleticism. Even people who are critical of his production (lower SEC sack numbers than Derek Barnett) have to appreciate what a freak he is. He likely just made it very difficult for the Browns not to take him first overall.
Hasson Reddick: The raw product out of Temple had a massive day working with the defensive linemen, and he put on a show. Reddick ran a 4.52 40-yard dash, flashed a 36.5 vertical jump and was near the top with a 133-inch broad jump. His 7.01 3-cone time isnât too shabby, either.
Reddick would have been the fastest linebacker if you move him to LB (where heâll probably play) and move Jabrill Peppers to safety (where heâll probably play). Reddick generally looked like an athletic freak and is a perfect example of someone utilizing the opportunity to boost his stock.
Haason Reddick was a top-40 prospect in November. But he has put himself in the top-20 mix with his Senior Bowl and Combine. #Stud— Dane Brugler (@dpbrugler) March 5, 2017
Haason Reddick. 4.52 in the 40. Jumped out of the gym. Has anyone helped himself more this pre-draft process?— Todd McShay (@McShay13) March 5, 2017
This is a guy on the rise who could go higher in the draft than most people expect.
Jordan Willis: There were some concerns about the Kansas State productâs ability to translate his athletic talent to the NFL level, but he certainly earned himself some cash with a big performance at the combine. Willis ran a 4.53 40 (with a ridiculous 1.54 10-yard split), leaped for 39 inches in the vertical and posted a silly 6.85 on the 3-cone drill.
That 1.54 10-yard-split for Jordan Willis is nice. Need to see him in short-area agility drills because bend is his issue.— Matt Miller (@nfldraftscout) March 5, 2017
Willis has done a lot this offseason to improve his stock and feels like someone who could land squarely in the middle of the second round, if not higher should he continue to dominate leading up to the draft.
Jabrill Peppers: The ultimate position-less player initially worked out with the linebackers on Sunday and will also work out with the defensive backs on Monday. This was actually a net positive for Peppers, because his athleticism is just different than ânormalâ linebackers and, certainly, defensive linemen. His 40-yard dash time of 4.46 was the fifth-fastest by a linebacker since 2000, and he just looked substantially quicker than everyone else on the field in drills.
Thatâs because he is! But he also compares favorably to other defensive backs, too.
Peppers will probably be a first-round pick, and Sundayâs action only boosted that case.
J.J. Watt: The best defensive player in football doesnât lose to many people. But he lost to his brother on Sunday, as T.J. Watt outran him in the 40-yard dash. NFL Network made sure to let J.J. know about it.
Yes, J.J. weighs 40 pounds more than T.J., so this is largely irrelevant.
Reuben Foster: Hate to keep putting him here, but it was reported Sunday that for being asked to leave the combine. Thatâs a good thing, in that he sent the letter and itâs encouraging he wants to set the record straight. But having to send the letter is a pretty huge problem. It shows just how important it really is being at the combine and you harassed one of the medical personnel.
Hopefully the letter wasnât signed with, â?â
Anyone without a boat named after Super Bowl titles: Did you see what Bill Belichick wore to the combine on Sunday? He showed up to work with everyone in the NFL in the same building and he showed up in a shirt that said âVI Ringsâ on it, the Super Bowl again this year.
Just a big goofy grin on his face as he talked to Willie McGinest, Giants.itâs one ring short. Belichick, of course, has won five Super Bowls as head coach of the Patriots and two more as defensive coordinator with the
Mustache lovers: If you were hoping the next time you saw Jim Tomsula heâd be walking around without a mustache, well, youâre a horrible human being. And you got your wish Sunday at the combine.
Tomsula was on the field for the defensive line drills, working with prospects while decidedly non-mustachioed.
On the bright side, Tomsula was having some fun out there and clearly looks like heâs enjoying life more than he was the last time we really saw him, when the 49ers were canning him after just a single year of being the head coach.