The final day of the NFL Combine, the Cornerbacks and the Safeties hit the field to do some of their drills. Being in the secondary has become a dangerous in the NFL now with so many high passing teams combined with the rule changes that make the job even tougher to complete. With this year being a year with no consensus top secondary player, but a lot of good ones, the combine will help NFL GMs and Coaches decide who will be in their secondary for the future. The NFL Combine can gain millions or lose millions for a player, but in a group this close, the importance is magnified even more.
Justin Gilbert of Oklahoma State impressed everyone today. He had the fastest forty time of everyone today with a 4.37. He also was not too shabby on the Bench Press, with 20 reps, only 2 behind the leader. Combine that with his 126 inch broad jump and he may have pushed himself to the top of the CBs rankings. One of the other contenders for top CB, Bradley Roby of Ohio State, also had a solid day with a 4.39 forty, a 38 and half inch vertical, and his 4.04 20 yard shuttle. The 3rd prospect at CD is Darqueze Dennard of Michigan State. He had a respectable 4.51 forty, but only had 15 reps on the bench press.
Someone who definitely helped his stock today was Jaylen Watkins of Florida. Not only did he have a fast 4.41 forty, but he also led everyone in Bench Press reps with 22. He is projected to be a nickel back taken in the middle rounds. Another guy that stood out was Kyle Fuller of Virginia Tech. Although he did not do well in the strength area with only 12 bench reps, he showed his speed and explosiveness with his 4.49 forty, his 38 and half inch vertical, and his 128 inches broad jump. He needs to sure up his tackling technique to succeed on the next level.
The competition for top Safety seems to be between Ha Ha Clinton Nix of Alabama and Calvin Pryor of Louisville. Both stayed pretty close to each other with both running the exact same forty time of 4.58. Pryor did show more strength with 18 reps on the bench compared to only 11 from Clinton-Nix. Pryor had a 34 and half inch vertical compared to the 33 inch vertical of Clinton-Nix, but Nix had a better broad jump with 119 inches compared to the 116 inches of Pryor. The decision between the 2 will most likely come down to private workouts and the interview process.
Two Safeties that really opened some eyes today were Deone Bucannon, a SS from Washington State, and Terrence Brooks, and FS from Florida State. Bucannon put on a show today, finishing in the top 4 in his forty time with 4.49, his bench press reps with 19, his vertical of 36 and half inches, his broad jump of 125 inches, and his 3 cone shuttle time of 6.96. He could a punishing safety on Sundays next year. Brooks also highlighted his athletic ability with the fastest forty time at 4.42, a vertical of 38 inches, and a broad jump of 119 inches. However, he must get stronger, exemplified by his 10 bench press reps. He also much get better tackling technique. If he improves both, he can be a starter by year 2.
The NFL combine is now done and all the numbers, heights, weights, and any other type of measurement you can think of is now in the books. Tomorrow the draft process will continue as we get into Pro Days as well as private workouts. The NFL has an unlimited and bright future and over the last 4-6 days we have been able to see who the next stars of the league can and will be. It is always a well put together event that will change the shape of the league and will continue. Thank the NFL, for the NFL Combine.
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