Offense lovers, begin soiling pants now. On the 28th, your future headline makers run fast, jump high and far, and do Shifty McTwisties or whatever the hell Shaun White did. Except better. Without a snowboard.
So on we go with my combine combinations after day 1 (OL, TE, footmen). But not all is rosy in Indy. There are plenty of quarterbacks who have decided not to quarterback, WRs who will not be received widely, and running backs who will be running back...to Mama! Oh sweet sassy molassy that stings!
Alright. Name time before gametime. Begin.
Jevan Snead - QB, Ole Miss
With Sam Bradford, Jimmy Clausen, Colt McCoy, Dan LeFevour and Tim Tebow having decided not to throw, Snead becomes my highest rated QB prospect who will actually simulate being a QB at the combine. Just for that he gets a mention. And a cookie. Almost as important as cookies will be his interviews. Snead put up pretty sloppy numbers (and some sloppy performances) after being pretty hyped up before last season. He's got to find a way to explain that without blaming his receivers (who, minus now Steeler Mike Wallace, are not impressive at all) and without highlighting his poor decisions. If he can do both, he could get a decent hype bump.
Sean Canfield - QB, Oregon St.
Canfield's big, he produced very well this year, and I like his touch. He might also be the slowest QB in the draft this year. He'll go on day 3, but it'll take some solid deskwork (as in interviewing) to get teams interested enough to pull him out of the 4th round.
John Skelton - QB, Fordham
"Who?" you might ask. "John Skelton, you dumbass, you just read it," I would reply. Let's be honest neither you, nor I, nor anyone we know saw Fordham play. And if you do know someone who saw Fordham play, they need to find better things to do with their time. Like watch North Texas play. It's a veritable NFL player factory, I tells ya. Anywho, "The Skeleton" has been invited at the combine. Although he's listed at 6'5", 244 lbs. (nice!), I'd rather see him show up 6'9", 202 lbs. with his face like the roided out guy from The Program. And I want him to spit on somebody. Important. I like this guy.
Dexter McCluster - RB, Ole Miss
Though Jahvid Best claims the top "game-changer" spot for most, McCluster isn't far behind. His real drawback isn't very subtle either -- he's tiny. And not by football standards either; he's listed at just 5'8", 165 lbs.. McCluster will be officially measured tomorrow, and he'll need every inch and pound he can muster to stay in the 3rd round. Of course, a Trindon Holliday-ish 40-time wouldn't hurt either...
Anthony Dixon - RB, Mississippi St.
Dixon is tied with the next name on this list for biggest RBs in the draft. Those two need to measure large (and not appear swollen or out of shape) to solidify their stock, but Dixon needs to avoid crapping out in the athleticism drills. If he comes off as just a big ball of meat, he'll drop even deeper on boards.
LaGarrette Blount - RB, Oregon
Blount last made national headlines with his shenanigans in Idaho in Oregon's season-opening loss on Boise St.'s blue field. I think he's being underrated by a lot of online scouting outlets; for NFL front offices, though, their concern certainly has to be his character. More than the drlils, Blount needs to interview well not only in private, but explain himself (without Chip Kelly covering for him) to show how much he's matured since Sept. 3rd. And by the way, if you're one of those people who thinks the blue field is unfair, just wait for the Slaughterhouse...
Joique Bell - RB, Wayne St.
The John Skelton of the RB class (or is Skleton the Joique Bell of the QB class?), Bell's tape has impressed many in the last month or so. Now in the same buliding as future NFL starting RBs, Bell has a chance to prove he deserves to be there. As a power back, he needs to overperform in the power drills or just perform decently in the agility drills.
Dezmon Briscoe - WR, Kansas, and Mike Williams - WR, Syracuse
Similar builds, similar skills, similar reputations, similar draft stock. What separates these two is really yet to be seen. Oddly, they're in a very, very deep WR class, and most teams don't need to take a shot on either even though they both could make an immediate impact in the NFL in the right system. More than any WRs, I'll be watching these two to see how they perform.
Taylor Price - WR, Ohio
That's not a typo; he didn't go to Ohio St. I only saw him play one game this season (the Denton heartbreaker of 2009), but I didn't immediately see him as NFL material. That won't change entirely at the combine, but I'm always open to argument. Price isn't huge, so he'll need to make things happen with his feet; and if his rep is any indication, he will. He's fast as all hell, but are pure speed and a decent frame enough to make him early day 3 material?
Jacoby Ford - WR, Clemson, and Trindon Holliday - ?, LSU
I don't see either having a huge impact in the NFL, but the fact McCluster and these two are still garnering attention signals a change in the NFL. I don't know if it's already been made or if we're on the cusp, but that change is the inclusion of tiny lightning-fast ball carriers into special teams and even running plays. One of these two should run the fastest 40 at the combine, though I wouldn't bet on either one of them. Is there anything either one could do to help or hurt their draft stock? Probably not. So why are they here? Because they're fast and tiny, and that's fun to watch at the combine. Served.
Day 3 up next, covering D-linemen and linebackers. Holler.