Today the quarterbacks, receivers and running backs were measured, weighed and interviewed.
DeAndre Hopkins was the main positive of the day for me. At 6-1 and 214lbs, he also has ten inch hands, 33 inch arms and an 80-inch wingspan. For a guy who doesn’t look all that big on tape, those are some impressive numbers. The perception has been — Hopkins is a smaller receiver, Keenan Allen and Cordarrelle Patterson are bigger targets. It’s time we changed that perception.
Allen only measured an inch taller (6-2) and he was 8lbs lighter. He has the same size hands but shorter arms (32 inches). Cordarrelle Patterson is 2lbs heavier than Hopkins, 7/8′s of an inch taller but has smaller hands (10 inches vs 9 inches) and smaller arms (33 inches vs 31 inches). There’s very little between the three players in terms of size and on this evidence, it’s no surprise that Hopkins has been the more consistent target with those hands and reach.
Allen won’t do any drills in Indianapolis due to lingering injury concerns. Patterson will undoubtedly run a terrific forty yard dash. It’ll be very interesting to see how Hopkins matches up for pure speed.
Tavon Austin came in at 5-8 and 174lbs. Dexter McCluster was 5-8 and 172lbs in 2010. We’ll see if Austin can run faster than McCluster’s 4.58 on Sunday. There were no surprises with Robert Woods (6-0, 201lbs), Terrance Williams (6-2, 208lbs) or Steadman Bailey (5-10, 193lbs) — although it’s worth noting that Bailey has ten inch hands and comparable arm-length to the taller Keenan Allen. I’m going to keep saying it, Hopkins and Bailey are the two best receivers in this class in my opinion. And Bailey might be the most underrated player overall.
Justin Hunter is the only big-name receiver to show above average height — he’s listed at 6-4 and 196lbs (needs to add weight). Pete Carroll showed up at Robert Woods’ press conference, having previously recruited him for USC. No, this doesn’t mean the Seahawks are necessarily going to draft him.
You can see a full press conference with Pete Carroll at the combine by clicking here.
Keep an eye on Ryan Swope this weekend. He doesn’t have great size at 6-0 and 205lbs but if he runs well, he could really boost his stock. He’s a natural receiver with a knack for making clutch plays.
Da’Rick Rogers measured at 6-2, 217lbs with 33 inch arms and 9.5 inch hands. No issues there. I’ve added 2011 tape at the bottom of this piece so you can see him in action for Tennessee. However, it’s the same old concerns with Rogers. He had multiple failed drugs tests with the Vols, constantly tested the patience of his coaches and didn’t heed any warnings. Eventually, he was shown the door and had to move to Tennessee Tech.
Seattle’s receiver coach Kippy Brown was part of the Tennessee staff during the recruitment and will know all about the player — possibly better than anyone in the NFL not named Derek Dooley. The Seahawks will get a unique insight into his character, attitude and ability. Brown left for the Pacific Northwest before Rogers took the field as a true freshman, but he’ll know enough to offer an educated opinion. The interview process will be huge for Rogers. I still have a hard time buying into him, but then I’m not sitting in on any interviews this weekend. I’m not investigating his background. I’m judging him on previous mistakes. My main concern isn’t that he’ll fail in the NFL. It’s that he might drag others down with him. He has a lot of athletic potential as you’ll see in the video below. But can you trust him?
Matt Barkley came in taller than expected, just a half-inch away from 6-3 while weighing 227lbs. He also had big hands (crucial) at 10.1 inches. Compare that to Geno Smith (6-2, 218lbs, 9 inch hands) and there’s quite a difference. Still, it could be worse — Tyler Wilson has 8.5 inch hands. That will scare off some GM’s. For what it’s worth, 5-8 Tavon Austin has bigger hands than Tyler Wilson, who came in at 6-2, 215lbs. Ryan Nassib (6-2, 227lbs) and E.J. Manuel (6-4 237lbs) both have a chance to show off some physical skills this weekend.
Barkley also delivered a confident press conference, batting away concerns about his arm strength and speaking with the kind of authority teams want from a franchise quarterback. “I”m strong enough to make every throw and move in the pocket.”
Eddie Lacy won’t run the forty yard dash due to a hamstring injury, but it was concerning to see him at 5-11 and 233lbs. In one of the more bizarre admissions so far this week, he told the media, “I might have gained a pound or three” since the end of the season. Nice one, Eddie. Marcus Lattimore on the other hand is on a major charm offensive, coming in at 5-11 and 221lbs. He’s a fantastic public speaker and will be among the best interviews at the combine. It’s difficult not to root for Lattimore.
Montee Ball (5-10, 214lbs), Giovani Bernard (5-8, 202lbs), Andre Ellington (5-9, 199lbs), Jonathan Franklin (5-10, 205lbs), Joseph Randle (6-0, 204lbs), Stepfan Taylor (5-9, 214lbs) and Mike Gillislee (5-11, 208lbs) will all be jostling for draft position this weekend in a tight running back group.
The offensive lineman took on the bench press today and will kick off the drills tomorrow. Jonathan Cooper had an impressive 35 reps at 225lbs. Luke Joeckel and Eric Fisher managed 27 reps, D.J. Fluker and Travis Frederick 21 reps. Lane Johnson had 28 reps despite his long arms and lanky frame (impressive).
Chance Warmack chose not to lift today due to an apparent shoulder injury. Travis Kelce won’t work out at all due to an abdominal tear.
Zach Ertz to run a slow time?
I’m not sure what to make of this news, but it’s surprising. Tony Pauline is reporting Zach Ertz will run a particularly mediocre forty yard dash tomorrow:
Several people have commented to me in the past 24hrs they don’t expect Zach Ertz/TE/Stanford to break 4.7 in the forty tomorrow.
— Tony Pauline (@TonyPauline) February 22, 2013
I fully expected to be blown away by Ertz, who looked like a dynamic receiver at Stanford. It won’t destroy his stock — Rob Gronkowski only managed a 4.68. He also weighed 9lbs more than Ertz. He’s such a competent pass catcher I can’t see him dropping out of the first round. But if he runs in the 4.7 range he’s much more likely to be around in the late 20′s.
Sam Montgomery’s stock falling
It’s something we’ve talked about already, but according to Pauline, Sam Montgomery is not getting any help from the LSU coaches:
Confirmed today what I’ve heard since October; LSU coaches not giving Sam Montgomery/DE/LSU are rining endorsement. Quite the contrary — Tony Pauline (@TonyPauline) February 22, 2013
He will fall. I’m surprised to see him still appearing in first round mock drafts. If his college coaches aren’t willing to bang the table for him, who in their right mind will do it in a NFL war room? Remember this picture?
Daniel Jeremiah talks about Seattle’s options at #25. He believes getting a receiver for Russell Wilson would be a wise move and name checks DeAndre Hopkins and Keenan Allen. He also admits the depth at receiver is so good, there will be options in rounds two or three. As much as I like Hopkins, I’m not convinced the team will necessarily go for a receiver in round one. The options in round two could be incredible. The defensive options in rounds two and three are not as attractive.
Jeremiah also states “everybody” in the NFL has Sharrif Floyd ranked as a sure-fire top-five pick. Welcome to Jacksonville, Sharrif.
James Dator ponders the possibility of the draft being moved to May. I do not like this idea.
Bill Polian voices concerns over Tavon Austin’s size. “Great college player… great athlete… size worries you.”
Final thoughts and looking ahead
I’d recommend checking out Kip’s piece today highlighting what Bill Walsh looked for in a defensive tackle and how this relates to the Seahawks. I’m now going back and re-assessing every evaluation I made about this defensive tackle class as a consequence of reading it. Funnily enough, I started with Johnathan Hankins at Ohio State and I’ve already adjusted my view on him. I’ll go into more detail another day after the combine.
Tomorrow I’ll be away with work so will post an open thread for people to discuss the offensive line and tight end drills. When I get in I’ll watch the replay and make a few notes so stay tuned for that. On Sunday and Monday I’ll be live-blogging throughout the workouts involving the quarterbacks, running backs, receivers, defensive lineman and linebackers. Instant results and commentary. Hope to see you there.
Da’Rick Rogers tape vs Cincinnati, LSU, Georgia and Florida