NFL Combine Game Thread/Reactions

SMU_Sox

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Let's use this thread to talk about performance at the combine.

Here is the schedule.

Wednesday: RB/OL Measurements
Thursday: QB/TE/WR Measurements
Friday RB/OL Drills, DL/LB Measurements
Saturday: QB/WR/TE Drills, DB Measurements
Sunday DL/LB Drills
Monday: DB Drills.

Orlando Brown showed up as expected and he is a massive human. 6077 height and 345 pounds with 35 inch arms.
 

SMU_Sox

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Isaiah Wynn has small hands, 8 and 1/2 inches. You know what they say about small hands... (I have women's hands by the way and I apparently sneeze like one too - I just moved down 4 rounds).
 

Greekca

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A couple of notes from RB/OL measurements:

- Connor Williams was listed at 6'6" 315 on the Texas roster but came in at 6'5" 296. He also came in just at the magical OT cutoff of 33" arms. Not a great start for a guy who had a less than stellar 2017 tape.

- Quenton Nelson measured 6'5" 325 with 33.5" arms. Curious if those measurements have anyone thinking he may be able to kick out to tackle.

- Isaiah Wynn measured 33 3/8" arms which is above the tackle cutoff, but his lack of height (6'2 1/2") probably forces him inside as expected.

Most of the other OL came in as expected. The big, long guys were big and long and the smaller, shorter guys were short and small.

- The top RBs of Saquon Barkley (233) and Derrius Guice (224) both came in on the large side as did Nick Chubb (227) and Royce Freeman (229). Will be interesting to see how well they run (and how much weight they cut between now and then). Fournette measured 240 and ran a 4.51 last year which was seen as absurd.

- As expected, Akrum Wadley came in on the small side (5'10" 194) but also measured very small hands at 8 1/4" (smallest in this draft and last year at RB). For comparison, Dion Lewis measured 5'7" 193 with 8 3/4" hands. 9" is usually the cut off used for receiver or cornerback.
 

SMU_Sox

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Saquon Barkley with a 4.41 and 4.42 on his first two attempts at the 40.
Chubb put up great vertical and broad jump numbers. Pretty sure he won’t fall back into the third now. Think he is a lock in the second now. He’s a guy who would compliment White well but I think he has a longer way to go than Michel as a receiving back. Pats like versatility. Still, wouldn’t be upset if they picked up a RB with one of their top 4 rounds picks.
 

RedOctober3829

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Someone to watch in the later rounds of the draft: Chase Edmonds, RB Fordham. He is the exact same size as James White(5'9" 204 lbs to White's 5'10" 205 lbs) and ran nearly the same exact time as White(Edmonds 4.55 to White 4.57). Similar numbers in vert, broad jump, and bench press too.
 

SMU_Sox

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Brown is not going to move well in those events. He is huge AND has long arms. A couple things going for him: 1) His 3-Cone was a respectable 7.87 which is good for a man of his size. 2) He is an OL and the combine means the least to OLs.

Can we agree across the board that of all the tests bench press is probably the least relevant/predictive of future performance? When I studied him I thought he had decent tape. Short on time but basically I don't think he is a day 1 guy and never have. I don't know how to deal with anomalies here. I wouldn't pick him though.
 

Cellar-Door

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Brown is not going to move well in those events. He is huge AND has long arms. A couple things going for him: 1) His 3-Cone was a respectable 7.87 which is good for a man of his size. 2) He is an OL and the combine means the least to OLs.

Can we agree across the board that of all the tests bench press is probably the least relevant/predictive of future performance? When I studied him I thought he had decent tape. Short on time but basically I don't think he is a day 1 guy and never have. I don't know how to deal with anomalies here. I wouldn't pick him though.
The jumping would worry me most, no explosion at all, guys with trouble exploding off the line and weak lower bodies get eaten alive in the NFL at tackle. You can't give the athletic Edge rushers a free step, they're either already past you, or inside your reach and pushing you back at that point.

Also the reports that Coaches yelled at him for not going hard in one of the drills is...... worrying. If you come in looking out of shape, blow the athleticism tests, you need to at least show hard work in the drills.

Yea my understanding is bench is as much a measure of body proportions as it is of strength.
Long arms makes it harder, sure but....

Even with that, 14 is a laughably poor performance.
 

RedOctober3829

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The jumping would worry me most, no explosion at all, guys with trouble exploding off the line and weak lower bodies get eaten alive in the NFL at tackle. You can't give the athletic Edge rushers a free step, they're either already past you, or inside your reach and pushing you back at that point.

Also the reports that Coaches yelled at him for not going hard in one of the drills is...... worrying. If you come in looking out of shape, blow the athleticism tests, you need to at least show hard work in the drills.



Long arms makes it harder, sure but....

Even with that, 14 is a laughably poor performance.
Yeah 14 is pitiful for a lineman. It just shows that upper body strength is sorely lacking.
 

SMU_Sox

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NDT Scouting's pre-combine notes on Orlando Brown
I like Brown a lot and he will likely carry a first round grade for me. With that said, he needs to prove that he has enough athleticism at his size to project as a blindside pass protector in the NFL.

Already checking in at 6077 and 345 pounds with 35-inch arms, Brown is a massive man with rare physical traits. And while that size is appealing, it only matters if he can move. While I think he will do fine, validating it with measurable tests will go a long way in proving that he is a future left tackle at the next level.

In a class of talented offensive tackles, you can ask 5 different evaluators who the best tackle is and it would come as no surprise to hear five different answers. Brown has a chance to set himself apart with a strong showing. He has the most to prove.
Time to start rethinking those evals, Joe.
 

Cellar-Door

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Cleveland has to take him at one, right? He won’t last until 4.
I'd trade the pick to someone who wants to overpay. I don't care how good an athlete he is, RBs are essentially fungible. Recent top picks had teams whose running attacks performed the same or better in games they missed (Elliott, Fournette). If the Browns stay at 1 then they should take Chubb or Fitzpatrick and get a QB at 4.
 

ZMart100

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Someone to watch in the later rounds of the draft: Chase Edmonds, RB Fordham. He is the exact same size as James White(5'9" 204 lbs to White's 5'10" 205 lbs) and ran nearly the same exact time as White(Edmonds 4.55 to White 4.57). Similar numbers in vert, broad jump, and bench press too.
He certainly had intriguing numbers. He looks like a liability as a pass blocker, but many college RBs are.

Someone else in that class of 3rd down backs to take a look at is Justin Jackson out of Northwestern 6 ft, 193 lbs, 4.52 40, 6.81 3 cone, 4.07 short shuttle, 38.5" vert. He's not as good a running back as Edmonds, but he's better as a pass blocker. He needs a lot of work refining his route running, but shows sufficient quickness. Jackson may turn out to be more of a WR/RB than a RB/WR if he can learn to have more consistency with his footwork.

Chase Edmonds v Army
Justin Jackson v Penn St.
[/spoiler
 

SMU_Sox

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Mike Gesicki is having a good day so far. Penn State TE who Masco's guest loved for the Pats (I believe Masco likes him too). He came in at 6044 and 247 (move guy and a receiver). No official combine score for the 40 but both his runs were 4.55. Long arms at 34 and 1/2 and big hands. He benched 22 but more importantly had a 10'9" broad jump. Damn. Will update his other numbers later but if the Pats got him would get quite the athlete. I really like this TE group even though they all have either warts or limitations.
 

SMU_Sox

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Gesicki finished the day even better than he started.

Of tight ends in the combine since 2006:

6.76 3-cone 3rd best

4.1 20 yard shuttle 6th best

11.33 60 yard shuttle 4th best.

Yes he’s only 247 but those are full-drool inducing stats.
 

HurstSoGood

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UCF LB Shaquem Griffin. Prosthetic left hand.
20 bench press reps @ 225.

Got a bit dusty here as the players and staff around him encouraged him.
Shit.
 

Mugsy's Jock

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I think Tanner Lee is the current leader in the all-important best-looking quarterback drill.

Edit: the drill is properly called “most handsome quarterback.”. My bad.
 
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dcmissle

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Lorenzo Carter,a shade under 6’5, 250, 4.46. Lol
 

SMU_Sox

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Shaq Griffin 4.38 YES! Go Shaq go!

Edit: NFL network cut to Seawhawks area for their reaction because they have older Shaq Griffin and Pete Carroll gets all pumped up and excited. Was a fun moment.
 
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SMU_Sox

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I fucking love this kid. I want him to succeed so bad in the NFL. He had some monster games too. His peach bowl was amazing.
 

Papelbon's Poutine

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Did he wear a prosthetic arm in college? If so, would he be allowed to in the NFL?

Rooting hard for this kid.

Edit: never mind, I just pulled up some video, I didn't realize he was only missing the hand.
 

SMU_Sox

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Did he wear a prosthetic arm in college? If so, would he be allowed to in the NFL?

Rooting hard for this kid.

Edit: never mind, I just pulled up some video, I didn't realize he was only missing the hand.
Check out his final game against Auburn.

Let's acknowledge the elephant in the room. The way he tackles and uses his hand is obviously somewhat different from two handed players. It sounds obvious but when you are looking at technique it's easy to see how two handed guys have advantages. And you can also see how he uses moves, technique, and athleticism to overcome that. Auburn beat Bama and Georgia. He more than held his own against good SEC competition. The kid was 5th in the nation in triple jumping while in high school. He did that, baseball and football in high school. Edit: He is also a film-rat. I want to believe he is special enough to be able to play at least a solid rotational role in the NFL most likely on passing downs and/or special teams. I think with his speed he has at least the potential to blossom as a special teamer right away. What do others think? What do you all make of Shaquem Griffin?
 

dcmissle

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I'd trade the pick to someone who wants to overpay. I don't care how good an athlete he is, RBs are essentially fungible. Recent top picks had teams whose running attacks performed the same or better in games they missed (Elliott, Fournette). If the Browns stay at 1 then they should take Chubb or Fitzpatrick and get a QB at 4.
You may be right, but I have a feeling that he is going to drive the top of this draft.

After a spectacular Combine, word is out there that Cleve may take him with the first pick.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2018/03/05/after-saquon-barkleys-big-combine-talk-that-browns-could-take-him-first-overall/

Most likely, Cleve is putting that out there. My guess is that at least one team desperately wants him. And I would not be shocked if one of those teams is the Giants, who have the second pick. Cleve has a very legitimate threat that it can get its QB with pick 4.
 

Super Nomario

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Most likely, Cleve is putting that out there. My guess is that at least one team desperately wants him. And I would not be shocked if one of those teams is the Giants, who have the second pick. Cleve has a very legitimate threat that it can get its QB with pick 4.
Depends on who their QB is, right? If they like Rosen or Darnold, I don't think they can wait until 4.
 

dcmissle

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Depends on who their QB is, right? If they like Rosen or Darnold, I don't think they can wait until 4.
Absolutely. And the Giants’ willingness also probably depends on whether they like the top guys.
 

ElcaballitoMVP

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Penn State is killing it at the combine. I've never even heard of Troy Apke before today, but the 200 pound safety just ran a 4.35 40, 4th fastest so far amongst all of the DB's. Apparently his mom ran track in college and he used to run in high school. One year of college experience. Bill will probably take him in the 2nd.

 

Jed Zeppelin

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You may be right, but I have a feeling that he is going to drive the top of this draft.

After a spectacular Combine, word is out there that Cleve may take him with the first pick.

http://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2018/03/05/after-saquon-barkleys-big-combine-talk-that-browns-could-take-him-first-overall/

Most likely, Cleve is putting that out there. My guess is that at least one team desperately wants him. And I would not be shocked if one of those teams is the Giants, who have the second pick. Cleve has a very legitimate threat that it can get its QB with pick 4.
Man, I know the position has been a talent wasteland for them since the Barber/Jacobs/Bradshaw days, but grabbing a RB at #2 would be a brutal decision for that franchise.

Apparently they plan to spend their FA money on Andrew Norwell, which is a start. If you don't have that OL in order, forget about everything else, and certainly don't splurge for the luxury item.
 

Deathofthebambino

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Check out his final game against Auburn.

Let's acknowledge the elephant in the room. The way he tackles and uses his hand is obviously somewhat different from two handed players. It sounds obvious but when you are looking at technique it's easy to see how two handed guys have advantages. And you can also see how he uses moves, technique, and athleticism to overcome that. Auburn beat Bama and Georgia. He more than held his own against good SEC competition. The kid was 5th in the nation in triple jumping while in high school. He did that, baseball and football in high school. Edit: He is also a film-rat. I want to believe he is special enough to be able to play at least a solid rotational role in the NFL most likely on passing downs and/or special teams. I think with his speed he has at least the potential to blossom as a special teamer right away. What do others think? What do you all make of Shaquem Griffin?

I fucking love him. If he had two hands, we wouldn't even be having a conversation, he'd be a top 15 pick, IMO. He's that good. He's almost never out of position, he can change directions and accelerate as well as anyone in the draft, he's got all world top end speed, and whatever he lacks in technique by not having a hand, he makes up for by being in the right place at the right time and getting there with a ferocity. I first saw him last year during a couple of UCF games and probably saw a half dozen or more of their games this year, and there wasn't many times he wasn't the best player on the field, including the Auburn game. Will it translate at the next level? I don't know, but I wouldn't bet against him, and if I was an NFL GM, he's a kid I'm taking a chance on no later than the third round.
 

Cellar-Door

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I think the running game is making a comeback. Mostly because soon there won't be any good QBs.
The point is more that the running game depends far more on the Line and offense than any elite RB skill. The drop in production from most talented RB to replacement level is smaller than most other positions.
 

slamminsammya

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The point is more that the running game depends far more on the Line and offense than any elite RB skill. The drop in production from most talented RB to replacement level is smaller than most other positions.
Sure, the curve is different. I buy into the "between -4 and 4 yards is the o-line" philosophy. But I wonder what the value is of the home run runs and a receiver who can play in the passing game. The catching out of the backfield especially does not seem fungible at all to me. How many backs in the league are good receivers? Its growing for sure but definitely a huge advantage if you have one.
 

RedOctober3829

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Some notes from the latest Stick to Football podcast with Matt Miller. Draft stuff and other things.

--Saquon Barkley to the Giants at #2 is almost a lock. The only way it doesn't happen is if Cleveland doesn't select a QB at #1 and takes Barkley.
--The Dolphins have serious interest in RB Darius Guice from LSU.
--Miller thinks the Dolphins can get an early 2nd round pick for Jarvis Landry.
--Miller says that the Vikings and Jets are the two teams most in on Kirk Cousins.
 

Deathofthebambino

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Some notes from the latest Stick to Football podcast with Matt Miller. Draft stuff and other things.

--Saquon Barkley to the Giants at #2 is almost a lock. The only way it doesn't happen is if Cleveland doesn't select a QB at #1 and takes Barkley.
--The Dolphins have serious interest in RB Darius Guice from LSU.
--Miller thinks the Dolphins can get an early 2nd round pick for Jarvis Landry.
--Miller says that the Vikings and Jets are the two teams most in on Kirk Cousins.
I don't doubt Miller is correct in what he's reporting, but man, when I read stuff like this, it's like the gap between the Pats and everyone else just continues to grow. Barkley at #2 is insane. Everyone seems to point to Elliott at #4 as the right decision, but wasn't the Cowboys turnaround due more to Prescott catching lightning in a bottle than Elliott running behind the best offensive line on Earth? Their rushing numbers this year when the O-line was healthy was fine with and without Elliott, so I think whoever said it earlier that the O-Line is more important than the running back in most cases is spot on. Barkley may be the real deal (I'm not sold), but IMO, the Giants have much bigger holes to fill and can probably find a pretty good running back later in the draft or on the free agent market. And yes, I realize this goes against my thoughts on the Pats re-signing Dion Lewis, but fuck it, I love me some Dion Lewis.

The Dolphins dump Jay Ajayi this year, have Kenyan Drake come on strong, and yet, they are still thinking about spending a high pick on a running back? What?

The Dolphins think they'll get a high #2 for Jarvis Landry? The guy who averaged like 7 yards a catch last year? What? If they do, more power to them, but whatever team gives them that is truly reaching.

I think Cousins goes to the Jets, but I think it's a terrible move for him. There are much better opportunities on much better teams, in places where it's easier to play QB, than New York.
 

Tangled Up In Red

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Boise's Leighton Vander Esch probably solidified his first round status. Bulked up to 256 (6' 4"), 4.66 in the 40 not bad, but 39.5" vertical is pretty damn impressive at that size and his mobility drills really impressed.

Boise board review/highlights
 

RedOctober3829

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I don't doubt Miller is correct in what he's reporting, but man, when I read stuff like this, it's like the gap between the Pats and everyone else just continues to grow. Barkley at #2 is insane. Everyone seems to point to Elliott at #4 as the right decision, but wasn't the Cowboys turnaround due more to Prescott catching lightning in a bottle than Elliott running behind the best offensive line on Earth? Their rushing numbers this year when the O-line was healthy was fine with and without Elliott, so I think whoever said it earlier that the O-Line is more important than the running back in most cases is spot on. Barkley may be the real deal (I'm not sold), but IMO, the Giants have much bigger holes to fill and can probably find a pretty good running back later in the draft or on the free agent market. And yes, I realize this goes against my thoughts on the Pats re-signing Dion Lewis, but fuck it, I love me some Dion Lewis.

The Dolphins dump Jay Ajayi this year, have Kenyan Drake come on strong, and yet, they are still thinking about spending a high pick on a running back? What?

The Dolphins think they'll get a high #2 for Jarvis Landry? The guy who averaged like 7 yards a catch last year? What? If they do, more power to them, but whatever team gives them that is truly reaching.

I think Cousins goes to the Jets, but I think it's a terrible move for him. There are much better opportunities on much better teams, in places where it's easier to play QB, than New York.
I agree my man. There is no good justification for drafting a running back in the first round these days let alone top 5. You can find RBs that can start on Day 1 in the 2nd-4th rounds and pay them peanuts. It should be a cycle of RBs on rookie contracts if the organization is any good. Paying a RB a lot of money is simply not a good use of the cap.
 

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I fucking love him. If he had two hands, we wouldn't even be having a conversation, he'd be a top 15 pick, IMO. He's that good. He's almost never out of position, he can change directions and accelerate as well as anyone in the draft, he's got all world top end speed, and whatever he lacks in technique by not having a hand, he makes up for by being in the right place at the right time and getting there with a ferocity. I first saw him last year during a couple of UCF games and probably saw a half dozen or more of their games this year, and there wasn't many times he wasn't the best player on the field, including the Auburn game. Will it translate at the next level? I don't know, but I wouldn't bet against him, and if I was an NFL GM, he's a kid I'm taking a chance on no later than the third round.
I saw a lot of his games, he's got an insane motor and he motivates his teammates, sort of QB on the defense. I really like the guy (this coming from a USF fan), but his biggest problem is size. A lot of teams just aren't going to draft a 6'1" 227-pound linebacker. Some teams might draft him only if they think he can bulk up. For other teams, especially teams that play 4-3, or nickel 4-2, he could be ideal. Or if more teams start employing rover-type positions. He has some experience at safety earlier in his career so that may be another option, he certainly has the speed for it. 13 passes defensed out of 42 targets is pretty good for a linebacker, so he might have the skills for it too.
 

dcmissle

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Some notes from the latest Stick to Football podcast with Matt Miller. Draft stuff and other things.

--Saquon Barkley to the Giants at #2 is almost a lock. The only way it doesn't happen is if Cleveland doesn't select a QB at #1 and takes Barkley.
--The Dolphins have serious interest in RB Darius Guice from LSU.
--Miller thinks the Dolphins can get an early 2nd round pick for Jarvis Landry.
--Miller says that the Vikings and Jets are the two teams most in on Kirk Cousins.
So the mere hunch on Barkley now has legs? I am surprised a bit but certainly not shocked.

Don’t disagree with any of the criticisms voiced here. If it works out this way, here’s more hunch on the rationale:

1. Ultimate hug and kiss of Eli, who they figure has a few years left.

2. Cleaning up a rancid culture and locker room. Barkley is the anti-Odell.

3. They’ll say, we didn’t really like a lot the first tier QBs.

Probably a head feint, but again I’m far from shocked.
 

Cellar-Door

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Sure, the curve is different. I buy into the "between -4 and 4 yards is the o-line" philosophy. But I wonder what the value is of the home run runs and a receiver who can play in the passing game. The catching out of the backfield especially does not seem fungible at all to me. How many backs in the league are good receivers? Its growing for sure but definitely a huge advantage if you have one.
The value of pass catching is certainly higher I guess, but there are hundreds of backs who can catch the ball, and even backs who didn't catch it in college often do in the pros. There doesn't seem to be many if any cases in recent years where a team's offense deteriorated when a RB was out. Jamaal Charles goes down, a collection of late round picks all play great, Elliott gets suspended, they get the same production from Smith and Morris, Jay Ajayi gets traded, Kenyan Drake is much better, Fournette misses games, CHris Ivory gives you basically the same performance.
Best recent test case is maybe David Johnson (who is your top hope for Barkley ceiling probably?) but even then tough to tell as he went out 1 game in and the performance of his backups while bad wasn't worse than his half game.

Too many teams have been able to replace "stud" lead backs with a backup or pair of backups who cost very little for me to think any RB is worth a top 20 pick. Fitzpatrick as an example could be a top safety. Look at SEA when Earl Thomas is out, or KC's D when Berry went out. Look at how much more of an impact Tyron Smith as a tackle had on DAL when he was out vs. Elliott.

Barkley could be David Johnson .... you'd still be a better team with an elite defensive stud (or QB, or O-line stud) and one of the dozens of late pick or cheap FA RBs.
 

SMU_Sox

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I just go home and had a minute to look at the combine results from today. Holy shit. Damn. Hey Bill, if you are looking for athletic linebackers and defensive backs this year you are in luck.

On the whole I think this year’s draft class might be one of the most athletic ever.

Those corners...
 

dcmissle

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I just go home and had a minute to look at the combine results from today. Holy shit. Damn. Hey Bill, if you are looking for athletic linebackers and defensive backs this year you are in luck.

On the whole I think this year’s draft class might be one of the most athletic ever.

Those corners...
This should be pinned, for better or worse.
 

SMU_Sox

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This should be pinned, for better or worse.
I’ll own that. Combine stats are a small piece of the puzzle. But anomalies are important. Tim Settle was a guy who went from some day 2 hype to maybe not draftable. And then you have it the other way around where guys test off the chart. Going into this draft I wanted to see the Pats D get more athletic in their front seven and add talent for long term needs at corner and safety. I liked so many of the coverage guys at each position on defense, linebacker, safety, and corner. That they have athleticism on their side is more evidence of their potential and abilities seen from watching them. I’ve seen Ward stick to guys but now I know he has the speed and burst to do that (wish he did the 3-cone but an 11’4” broad jump is rifuckingdiculous.
Harold Landry is another example of the relative importance of combine stats (or how they have to be put into context). I got this from the LockedonNFL Draft folks who also went on Masco’s LockedonPatriots Podcast to discuss. Landry is a guy who was hurt early on in 2017. His ankle injury impacted his bend. His production dipped because of it. By the end of the season and now by the combine it has healed and he performed as well as he did in 2016. He verified that, in part, with his 6.88 3-cone.

Malik Jefferson aced the combine but like many other underwear olympians he might never materialize in the NFL because he doesn’t have the mental aspect to the game. Plenty of great athletes don’t make it.

I remember in an intro torts class I had a professor who sarcastically lamented that you always either have good law and bad clients or bad law and good clients. Applying that principle to this year’s draft and what I said earlier and you have a paradigm buster: a lot of guys now with good tape and good athleticism. That’s a nice situation to be in.
 

dcmissle

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It is. And I want what you want. But I am not holding my breath. That’s why “for better or worse.” Hopefully, we have a course correction on the D.