The NFL Combine has come and gone. It’s one of the best times for NFL Draft “experts” like myself. We finally get a chance to see all these prospects compete in drills as they try to set themselves apart from other players. It’s a good time that is HIGHLY OVERRATED as far as the overall scope of the NFL is concerned.
However, that doesn’t stop us from getting absolutely wrapped up in it as we become obsessed in finding the next big NFL players. I know it’s strange that a guy can absolutely dominate on the football field, but blow it in the workouts and we no longer consider him a good football player…..but that’s the way the NFL Combine operates folks.
So, which players saw their stocks explode after this weekend’s NFL Combine and which players likely saw a lot of money slip from their fingers?
It’s all here in THE ULTIMATE SPORTS BLOG’S NFL COMBINE WINNERS & LOSERS!!!!!!
NFL Combine Winners
John Ross (WR), Washington Huskies
John Ross out of Washington had a huge day on Saturday when he set the NFL combine record by running the 40 yard dash in 4.22! Ross also did so while reportedly experiencing cramps and mentioned that he could run it even faster if healthy. Ross has had knee problems the last few years, which makes this feat even more impressive if you ask me. It wouldn’t surprise me to see Ross potentially get taken in the last half of the first-round of the NFL Draft. With speed like that, he could be a nightmare to cover.
DeShaun Watson (QB), Clemson Tigers
I’m personally not a huge believer in DeShaun Watson’s NFL future, but you can’t deny that the kid is talented. After two impressive performances against Alabama in college and after an impressive day at the combine, Watson should definitely be considered one of the top overall QB prospects in the draft, if not the top one. Watson killed during the QB drills at the combine and someone is going to take a chance on this kid in the first-round.
Evan Engram (TE), Ole Miss Rebels
Is your favorite NFL team looking for a tight end with top speed and amazing hands? Look no further than Evan Engram. Engram killed it this weekend at the combine. He ran a 4.42 40-yard dash (the third fastest time for a tight end ever), caught every single ball thrown his way, and had amazing footwork in the other drills. Engram has the potential to be a nightmare match-up for other teams. He’ll likely get taken in the second-round, but he definitely entered the first-round discussion this weekend.
O.J. Howard (TE), Alabama Crimson Tide
O.J. Howard is a freak. I think we all know this. However, after watching him dominate the combine this weekend, I’ve decided to consider him a “super freak” now. Howard ran a 4.51 forty-yard dash (even though he’s 6’6 and 250 pounds!), killed it on the bench press, the vertical, and all the other things they measure. Howard likely went from a late-first round pick to a mid-first round pick after an impressive weekend.
Zay Jones (WR), East Carolina Pirates
No one really knows how to feel about Zay Jones. The senior wide receiver was always productive at East Carolina, but people have expressed their doubts regarding his pro potential. After an impressive weekend at the combine though where he killed every single workout, Jones likely saw his draft stock move way up. While it’s still unlikely he’ll be taken on the first day of the draft, there is going to be a team that takes a flier on the kid at some point in day two.
Ethan Pocic (OL), LSU Tigers
This is an extremely weak draft for offensive lineman. If your favorite team needs an immediate upgrade on the o-line this off-season, the draft probably isn’t the best way to go about it this year. There are only a few OL guys that I like in this draft and Ethan Pocic of LSU was added to the list after an impressive showing at the combine. Pocic is 6’6 and is over 300 pounds and he did well in every single drill this weekend. He won’t get his name called early in the draft, but he’s going to be an immediate starter for some team this season.
Forrest Lamp (OL), Western Kentucky Hilltoppers
In a draft that is extremely weak on the offensive line, Forrest Lamp may be the best overall prospect. He doesn’t have ideal length to be an NFL offensive tackle, but you can plug him anywhere else on the line and he’ll be extremely effective. He slaughtered the drills this weekend and showed the world that even though he’s from a smaller school, he still has a great chance to end up as the best offensive lineman in this draft.
Christian McCaffery (Athlete), Stanford Cardinal
Stop me if you’ve heard this before, but Christian McCaffery is a natural football player. McCaffery wowed everyone at the combine this weekend with his exceptional athleticism and natural football skills. Some people just have it, and this kid does. The only problem is, what’s his position in the NFL? I personally think he can be a Tyreek Hill-like player for any NFL team. He could line-up at WR in certain packages, you can put him in at RB to throw teams off, and he also has the skill set to be an exceptional kick returner at the next level. Whatever team gets this kid is going to get a nightmare match-up at the next level.
Garrett Bolles (OL), Utah Utes
Garrett Bolles absolutely destroyed the combine workouts this weekend and very well could be the first offensive tackle taken off the board when the draft comes around. The only concerns I have regarding Bolles is his age (25) and the fact that he was only a one-year starter in college. However, his workout this weekend was impressive enough that it wouldn’t shock me at all to see him as the first offensive lineman taken in a weak class.
Myles Garrett (DL), Texas A&M Aggies
Myles Garrett is widely considered the best prospect in the draft and he sure looked like it this weekend. Garrett was the combine stud and he doesn’t only look like an extremely safe pick, but he looks like he has the chance to be an elite pass rusher in the NFL for years. This should have made the Cleveland Browns decision a lot easier. I say “should have” because it is the Browns and there’s a high chance they pass on Garrett and reach for one of the QB’s….which would be a major mistake.
Haason Reddick (LB), Temple Owls
Reddick had an absolutely amazing weekend at the combine. Reddick went from a potential late first-rounder to a potential mid-first round pick with his performance this weekend. He should be the first linebacker taken in the draft, which is extremely impressive considering he was a walk-on just four seasons ago. With his growth rate, he could end up being the best player in the draft when it’s all said and done.
Jabrill Peppers (Athlete), Michigan Wolverines
Jabrill Peppers is the man without a position. Everyone seems to disagree on what position he is most likely to succeed at when he enters the NFL, but one thing is clear….the dude can play. He had a great showing at the combine this weekend when working out alongside the linebackers on Sunday. Some NFL personnel guys like Peppers at linebacker, Peppers thinks he’s more of a safety, and I personally would like to see the guy at running back myself. See what I mean? He’s a man without a position. One thing is clear though, Peppers will likely go in the first-round of the NFL Draft.
Jamal Adams (S), LSU Tigers
Jamal Adams showed this weekend why he should be the #1 defensive back taken in the NFL Draft. Adams absolutely slaughtered the drills this weekend showing off a lot of explosiveness and athleticism that NFL teams will drool over. He also had a pretty decent forty yard dash time and rumors are that he impressed everyone with his knowledge of the game in the interviews. Adams is a sure-fire top 5 pick.
Adoree’ Jackson (CB), USC Trojans
I’m not the biggest fan of Adoree’ Jackson’s chances of turning into an elite NFL corner, but the guy is an athlete and you can’t deny that. At the combine this weekend, he showed that he has amazing hands and is extremely quick. Not only that, but he stole the show when he was back fielding punts. Jackson was likely a second-rounder heading into the draft, but it wouldn’t shock me to see a team take a chance on him in the first-round.
Obi Melifonwu (S), UConn Huskies
The hype is real surrounding Obi Melifonwu. He stole the show at the combine showing off great footwork and athleticism and did I mention that he’s 6’4? He likely still won’t end up a first-round pick, but his name is quickly rising up the charts. NFL teams love defensive backs with size and Melifonwu has that part taken care of.
NFL Combine Losers
DeShone Kizer (QB), Notre Dame Fighting Irish
I’m not afraid to admit when I’m wrong. Going into the draft, I personally had DeShone Kizer as my QB1. That’s changing after what I saw from him this weekend. Kizer failed to impress in any of the workouts. Not only that, but he looked pretty dreadful in a lot of the throwing workouts and it also showed in the way he carried himself. He obviously looked disappointed in his performance and he should be. He had the chance to be one of the first QB’s taken off the board. Now there’s a good chance he sees a drastic fall in the draft come next month.
Aviante Collins (OL), TCU Horned Frogs
Collins caused some buzz at the combine when he ran a 4.81 forty yard dash, which is the third fastest time ever posted by an offensive lineman. Why does it matter that an offensive lineman can run a fast 40 yard dash? It doesn’t. Collins absolutely came out and disappointed in every other drill he participated in. Does your team want an offensive lineman who can run fast but struggles in movement drills and opening up his hips? If so, Collins is your man. I would avoid him like the plague myself.
Samaje Perine (RB), Oklahoma Sooners
Samaje Perine is a big bodied back who is a downhill runner. Unfortunately for him, he posted a sluggish 4.65 forty yard dash which is extremely disappointing. He also looked pretty awful in the other running back drills and looks lost in the passing game as well. Someone is likely to take a flier on the kid in the draft, but he definitely saw his stock slip a lot this weekend.
Cooper Kupp (WR), Eastern Washington Eagles
I like Cooper Kupp as a player. It seems like whenever you count the kid out, he comes out and makes you pay for ever doubting him. Well, he’s going to have to do that again after a semi-disappointing performance at the combine. Kupp had a lot of buzz going into the weekend. Some teams were even hinting that they could potentially look at him as a late first-rounder, but that likely changed after this weekend. Kupp posted a disappointing 4.62 in the forty yard dash, and that could likely cost him some money come NFL Draft weekend. Kupp is projected to be a slot receiver in the NFL at the moment, and he could be a dangerous one in due time. However, his stock slipped a little and there’s no telling where he’ll end up getting drafted.
Sefo Liufau (QB), Colorado Buffaloes
In the NFL, perhaps the #1 most important trait for a quarterback to have is accuracy. Unfortunately for Sefo Liufau, scouts have a lot of questions about his accuracy following a disappointing performance at the combine this past weekend. Sefo looked like trash in the QB drills and this comes after a disappointing performance in the Senior Bowl as well. It wouldn’t surprise me at all to see him go undrafted now.
Reuben Foster (LB), Alabama Crimson Tide
The potential first-rounder sent shock waves through the draft community on Friday night when it was announced that he got into an argument with a doctor and was sent home from the combine. Yes, Foster is one of the most talented players in the draft, but this is an alarming red flag. The combine is one of the most important things in a young player’s career. For a guy to get sent home for disciplinary reasons is extremely concerning. Do you want to draft a player who could potentially be a locker room nightmare? No, you don’t.
Teez Tabor (CB), Florida Gators
Teez Tabor came into the combine running his mouth about how he’s the best corner back in the draft. After his performance at th combine this weekend, I think he’s going to start keeping his mouth shut. Tabor ran a 4.62 forty yard dash and looked absolutely rough during all the drills. This was not a good weekend for Tabor. He was pegged as a potential top 15 pick before the combine. It wouldn’t surprise me to see him slip to the second round after this.
Pretty Much Every QB
Ya, I know I said DeShaun Watson looked good earlier, but that’s because he was the one shining moment in what was a big old pile of crap. If the Cleveland Browns were even thinking of drafting a guy like Mitchell Trubisky with the #1 overall pick, they had better quickly re-think their plans. This QB class is extremely weak. It’s so weak in fact, you know who most of the buzz at the combine was about? USC’s Sam Darnold, who isn’t even draft-eligible until next year! I know you hear this a lot as an NFL fan, but this is a bad year to need a QB.
AND WITH THAT……SEE YOU NEXT WEEK FOR THE USB’S SECOND NFL MOCK DRAFT OF THE YEAR!!!!!!!!!