Tag:Scouting Combine
Posted on: February 24, 2012 2:09 pm
Edited on: February 24, 2012 6:11 pm
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WR Blackmon won't run 40 at Combine

INDIANAPOLIS - Oklahoma State wide receiver Justin Blackmon won't run the 40-yard dash at the Scouting Combine after injuring his hamstring last week. He might participate in some short routes during receiver drills, but won't do anything this week that requires "opening up" and threaten his ability to perform at the Cowboys' March 7 Pro Day.
  
Blackmon, NFLDraftScout.com's top-rated wide receiver and No. 5 prospect overall, also measured in a hair under 6-1, shorter than his previously listed size.
  
"I know you get shorter every year," he quipped.
  
It also makes previous comparisons to Detroit's Calvin Johnson difficult.
  
"He's a big, physical guy and that's how I like to play," Blackmon said when asked about similarities between the two.
  
In addition to his smaller than advertised size, Blackmon still has to answer questions about his straight-line speed. He said with a laugh that he'd "like to run a 4.2" in the 40-yard dash, but said he expects to run in the 4.4 or 4.5 range.
  
"I tell (people) to look at the tape, I've never been caught from behind," Blackmon said.
  
Blackmon also admitted he has some work to do on his route-running.
  
"I know I have a lot to work on with route running," said Blackmon. "I am working on it continually. I know I have work to do and I'm willing to do it."
  
As confident as he plays on the field, Blackmon described himself as quietly confident off it.
  
Asked to explain, he dead-panned: "I don't speak much."

Posted on: February 24, 2012 12:55 pm
Edited on: February 24, 2012 12:58 pm
 

Oklahoma WR Broyles hopes for early April Pro Day

Oklahoma wide receiver Ryan Broyles characterized his recovery from surgery to repair a torn ACL and and slight meniscus tear as "going well" and said that he hopes to have a Pro Day in early April to prove as much to NFL teams. His Sooner teammates may be available to work out as his Pro Day as well, though the school already has one Pro Day scheduled for March 14.

Broyles injured his left knee playing against Texas A&M November 5. He was operated on by noted surgeon Dr. James Andrews in Pensacola, Florida and has already been running.

The 5-10, 188 pound Broyles left Oklahoma the NCAA's career leading receiver with 347 grabs for 4,586 yards and 45 touchdowns. A Biletnikof finalist last season, he turned down a chance to be a potentially high pick in last April's draft to help Oklahoma win a BCS Championship. He entered the year considered a possible top 50 selection by NFLDraftScout.com but due to concerns about his health is currently viewed as a 5th round prospect and the No. 23 rated receiver in the 2012 draft.

When healthy, Broyles has shown very good quickness out of his breaks and a keen understanding of where holes are in the defense. Considering his toughness and soft hands, he's viewed as one of this year's better slot receiver prospects.   
Posted on: February 24, 2012 11:18 am
 

Osweiler boosts cause by measuring "short"

Friday has been a good day for NFL teams in search of a quarterback in the 2012 draft. 

Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III answered concerns about his height by measuring in at nearly 6-2 (1/2) and 223 pounds. Moments later, Arizona State quarterback Brock Osweiler, currently NFLDraftScout.com's No. 4 rated passer, measured in slightly shorter than he'd been listed by the Sun Devils. According to a league source, Osweiler measured in at 6-6 (7/8) and 242 pounds. He'd been listed by ASU at 6-8.

Typically, it is a bad thing for a player to measure in shorter than he was listed by the school but in the case of the lanky Osweiler, measuring in more than an inch shorter should help to ease concerns about his mobility. Osweiler shows surprisingly light feet and flexibility on tape for a quarterback of his size. There is no doubt that he's a unique athlete, considering the fact that he originally committed to Gonzaga University as a basketball player before electing to pursue football with the Sun Devils. 

Despite Osweiler's rocket arm and athleticism, there are plenty of doubters who question if he'll be able to escape the speed of NFL pass rushers. This is mostly due to the fact that few quarterbacks of his size have had any sustained success in the NFL.

The only 6-8 quarterback in recent league history was former Seattle Seahawks' first round pick Dan McGwire (1991), whose lack of mobility contributed to him being a notable bust. On the other hand, there are a handful of successful NFL quarterbacks who measured in at 6-6, including Joe Flacco of the Baltimore Ravens. Former Arkansas standout Ryan Mallett, drafted last year in the third round by the New England Patriots, is also 6-6 and played well when given an opportunity in the preseason. 

My CBS colleague Pete Prisco makes the case that Osweiler should contend for first round consideration and perhaps leap Texas A&M's Ryan Tannehill as the quarterback to follow Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III. By measuring in as he did, Osweiler may have boosted his chances at doing both.    

Posted on: February 24, 2012 10:04 am
Edited on: February 24, 2012 10:27 am
 

Griffin, Wright stand tall at Combine weigh-in

Football is a game of inches. And not only on the field.

Quarterbacks, running backs and wide receivers weighed in at the NFL Combine and Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III impressed at 6023 (6-2 3/8) and 223 pounds according to multiple sources.

Listed at 6-2, 220, as a junior at Baylor, reports circulated that the Heisman Trophy winner might be closer to 6-0 and 200-pounds. However, it was best case scenario for Griffin who debunked several rumors just by stepping on a scale and getting measured. Since he decided to forego his senior season in Waco, he has been the No. 2 quarterback in this draft class by NFLDraftScout.com behind only Stanford's Andrew Luck. Fellow draft analyst Rob Rang ranks Griffin as the No. 4 overall prospect on his Big Board.

With his official measureables in the books, all eyes will be on Griffin during workouts, especially for his 40-yard dash, if he decides to run on Sunday with his quarterback group. As a true freshman at Baylor in 2008, he was a Track & Field All-American after finishing third at NCAA Outdoor Championships in the 400-meter hurdles (49.55). Griffin also won the gold medal in the 400-meter hurdles at the Big 12 track meet with the third-fastest time in school history (49.22).

Although Griffin isn't expected to throw for NFL teams in Indianapolis this week, Griffin has stated he's "excited to wow them in interviews." He will throw and work out at Baylor's Pro Day, which was recently moved up one day to March 21 to not conflict with Stanford's (and Andrew Luck's) Pro Day.

Baylor WR Kendall Wright, projected as a first-round pick and NFLDraftScout.com's third-ranked receiver, was 5102 (5-10 1/4), 188 pounds. There had been some doubt that Wright would measure taller than 5 feet 9. He's extremely explosive and his straight-line speed is expected to prove to be near the top of the wide receiver class.

-- Contributed by Dane Brugler, who can be followed on Twitter @dpbrugler
 

Posted on: February 23, 2012 6:27 pm
 

Colts deny report they advised Luck not to throw

New Indianapolis Colts' general manager Ryan Grigson flatly denied a report that his team had advised likely No. 1 overall pick Andrew Luck not to throw passes at the Scouting Combine this week.

Grigson, speaking to the media at the Combine Thursday, was twice asked about a tweet from Bob Kravitz of the Indianapolis Star that claimed Luck was willing to throw Sunday but was talked out of it by the Colts. 

"I never said anything," Grigson said. "Players are allowed to make their own decisions what they're going to do at the Combine. I've had no bearing on that, believe me."

At least one member of the media may not have believed Grigson. Seconds after answering the first question about whether he'd individually asked Luck not to throw, a follow-up question came asking if any member of the Colts had pushed the Stanford passer's decision. 

"No. Absolutely not," Grigson replied. 
 
The reality is, Luck's decision to throw or not throw at the Combine this week is unlikely to have any bearing whatsoever on his draft status. The redshirt junior has three years worth of tape proving his talents. He's been the top-rated prospect in the country by NFLDraftScout.com for nearly two years. My CBS colleague Mike Freeman noted that scouts were absolutely "kissy, kissy" about Luck. Frankly, if the Colts stun the world by taking anyone other than Luck with the first pick of the draft, the list of suitors calling the St. Louis Rams to move up to No. 2 overall would likely be a long one. 

Any perceived slight or miscommunication between the Colts and Luck could be significant, however, especially considering the precarious situation Indianapolis already has with their current quarterback, Peyton Manning. Speaking of Manning, Grigson offered little news on the star's progress and asked the media to understand that he and the Colts have little choice but to wait for Manning to improve medically.

"...Peyton has to be healthy," Grigson explained. "It has to be something that’s spoken on and investigated and talked about. Right now, it’s a process. We’re waiting for things to happen. Right now, we’re doing the things we have control of. Things we don’t have control of, we just have no choice but to be patient. We ask all of you to be the same."

Regardless of the Colts' decision with Manning, expect the team to be well represented at Luck's Pro Day March 22
Posted on: February 23, 2012 3:34 pm
 

Stanford OT Martin to push workout to Pro Day

Stanford left tackle Jonathan Martin is expected to wait until his March 22 Pro Day to work out for scouts rather than compete at the 2012 Scouting Combine.

Martin is in Indianapolis to undergo all of the medical testing and interviews. However, according to a source close to him, he was limited by illness in recent days preparing for the Combine at Athletes Performance Institute and doesn't feel comfortable performing the drills with his draft stock on the line until he's back to 100%. 

Though currently rated by NFLDraftScout.com as the No. 3 offensive tackle prospect in the 2012 draft, Martin is viewed by some as an even better athlete than Southern Cal's Matt Kalil and Iowa's Riley Reiff and therefore possessing higher upside. Each is among NFLDraftScout.com's top 14 rated prospects for the 2012 draft.

Workouts are, of course, important for every prospect but considering the strong tape Martin has over three starting seasons protecting Andrew Luck's blindside, pushing off the workout isn't likely to have any negative impact on his stock.

Should Martin indeed elect to push back his workout until his Pro Day, he won't have to worry about a lack of NFL interest.  High-ranking officials are expected to flock to Stanford's Pro Day to see Luck throw as well as see senior tight end Coby Fleener make his workout debut. A high ankle sprain suffered against Oklahoma State in the Fiesta Bowl kept Fleener out of the Senior Bowl and the Combine this week.

In all, Stanford has four prospects currently viewed as potential first round prospects: Luck (rated No. 1), Martin (14), Fleener (37) and junior offensive guard, David DeCastro (9), NFLDraftscout.com's top-rated prospect at the position.

Posted on: February 23, 2012 1:08 pm
Edited on: March 26, 2012 8:36 am
 

Doctor's note confirms ILB Wagner's pneumonia

Utah State linebacker Bobby Wagner has been hospitalized in Scottsdale, Arizona since Monday with pneumonia and was advised by a doctor there not to travel this week for the 2012 Scouting Combine. 

Wagner's agent, Kenny Zuckerman, sent a doctor's note explaining as much to National Football Scouting, the group that organizes the Combine in an effort to have the news distributed to all 32 NFL teams. 

Wagner, who earned the North Team MVP honors wih an impressive seven tackle, one tackle for loss, one interception performance in the Senior Bowl last month, is expected to make a full recovery and be discharged "in the next few days." His performance in Mobile helped ease concerns about Wagner's ability to play inside or out in the 4-3 defense as well as inside linebacker in the 3-4 as he demonstrated athleticism, instincts and physicality. Because of this, he's been charging up draft boards as one of the 2012 draft's more versatile linebackers. 

Wagner, whose 446 career tackles are the most from any Western Athletic Conference defender since 1999, earned All-WAC honors after each of the past three seasons. Experienced inside and out, Wagner is gaining grades from some teams as an inside linebacker and at weakside linebacker for others. Due to his athleticism, he's currently rated as the No. 5 OLB prospect in the 2012 draft by NFLDraftScout.com.

To maintain his lofty grade at OLB, Wagner may have to show scouts he has the speed to match up in coverage. It is not yet known, however, whether Wagner will be recovered sufficiently to participate in Utah State's Pro Day March 8 or if a new workout date will have to be set up. 

Update: Wagner has scheduled his on-campus Pro Day for March 30.

Scouts, of course, are interested to see Wagner perform in athletic drills, but like with all players, the bigger need may be for Wagner to travel to Indianapolis prior to the draft for a Combine medical "re-check" after missing the in-depth medical testing this week recovering from his illness.  

Posted on: February 23, 2012 12:25 pm
Edited on: February 23, 2012 12:26 pm
 

NFL: Once order set, Colts free to sign No. 1

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello informed the media today at the 2012 Scouting Combine that once the final order is determined for the first round, the Indianapolis Colts are free to sign whomever they intend to draft No. 1 overall. 

The Colts are widely expected to select Stanford quarterback Andrew Luck, but owner Jim Irsay also specifically mentioned Baylor's Robert Griffin III as another player his franchise is considering with the first pick. Irsay has said that his team plans to select a quarterback with the first pick. Dane Brugler, Pete Prisco and I each project the Colts to ultimately choose Luck in our current mock drafts.

The Colts aren't necessarily expected to actually sign anyone at this early stage of the process but the ability to negotiate with players could make their decision at No. 1 that much easier. 

The vast majority of the draft order has already been determined, but four teams -- the Carolina Panthers, Miami Dolphins, Kansas City Chiefs and Seattle Seahawks -- won't know which pick they'll be using until coin-flips break ties. The winner of a coin flip tomorrow morning will determine whether it will be the Panthers or Dolphins selecting eighth. The loser will pick ninth. The Buffalo Bills own the 10th pick. The Chiefs and Seahawks' coin flip will determine which club gets the No. 11 and No. 12 overall picks. 

Regardless of which teams win the coin flip, the competing teams will alternate picks in Rounds 2-7.   
             

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