The 2018 NFL Scouting Combine is underway and Saturday will provide an opportunity for the top defensive line and linebacker prospects in the nation to separate themselves from their peers by competing in various positional drills, workouts and interviews.
He needs to learn how to play corner beyond just being fast, but he will likely be just fine in the National Football League if he lands with a team that allows him to play off-man rather than press-man in coverage.
If he does manage to beat Ross' record, his draft stock could soar. That's just the way the combine goes each year.
Jordan Thomas (Oklahoma) needed a good combine to prove he's worth the risk after multiple suspensions over the last three years, but a 4.64 40-yard dash and lack of concentration in on-field drills, resulted in what appeared to be a frustrating day. "But when they break and there's that transition period that's going on, that 10-to-15-minute period, then we're [conversing] a little more".
They were the fastest clockings recorded during the four-day combine, pushing LSU wide receiver DJ Chark out of the top spot. "I've been running fast my whole life". Scouts estimated he would run a 4.6 in the 40 entering the season but on Monday he clocked in at 4.35 seconds.
Despite putting together an impressive college career, including being named the 2016 American Athletic Conference Defensive Player of the Year, Griffin knew that his disability would cause teams to hesitate to select him. His competitive nature really stood out to me on film, and I loved watching him play. Terrell ran a 4.48-40 and a very impressive 41 1/2 vertical jump.
Regardless, Ward is considered the best man-to-man corner in the draft.
But James wasn't the only defensive back to blaze through the 40-yard dash. Some of the lesser known names that caught my attention were Duke Dawson from Florida (nickel back), Penn State's Grant Haley (inside/outside CB), and Avonte Maddox from Pitt. Haley and Thomas posted the fastest times in this drill for the entire combine. At 207 pounds, a respectable weight, the junior safety ran a 4.40 40-yard dash, a mark that only five safeties drafted in the last decade who weighed more than him have bested.