Wednesday really is the hump day of the Combine week. At least for those without a team’s logo on their clothes: the excitement of Indianapolis is turning into the slog of measurements and interviews with nothing but quarterback and receiver bench reps at the end of the day. Still, there were some notable developments.
With NFL Scouting Combine officially kicking off today, here’s a complete breakdown of the schedule for the week: pic.twitter.com/6RGX6ot0Uj— Jordan Reid (@JReidNFL) February 24, 2020
1. The Broncos’ formal interviews are telling.
We found out Denver spoke with Jedrick Wills in an official meeting Tuesday, and they followed it up speaking with Tristan Wirfs. I know PFF has been carrying the Garett Bolles torch for a long while now, but let there be no doubt: the Broncos hope to upgrade at left tackle.
Beyond the biggest names, the Broncos have also shown interest in other linemen:
- USC’s Austin Jackson - Potential swing guy who fits best in a zone rushing attack.
- Lousiana’s Robert Hunt - Played tackle/guard in college, best in a gap scheme.
- Michigan’s Cesar Ruiz - Versatility is the name of his game.
- Oregon’s Shane Lemieux - Guard who fits best in a gap blocking scheme.
Quick reminder that everything I’ve found studying Pat Shurmur and the fact that Mike Munchak was retained suggests the team will continue with the hybrid blocking scheme the Broncos used last season.
Tristan Wirfs paraphrasing Ricky Bobby's dad. Love to see it. https://t.co/Oi5Skuylqj— Joe Rowles (@JoRo_NFL) February 26, 2020
2. The Broncos met with CeeDee Lamb and Jalen Reagor
Not a huge surprise as the Broncos have had some rumored interest in Reagor, but it’s good to see Elway checking out Lamb. If you read my Pre-Combine Reciever rankings you’ll know he’s currently my WR1. There’s an outside possibility he could slide because both Jerry Jeudy and Henry Ruggs are expected to torch workouts.
- WR Laviska Shenault— Sayre Bedinger (@SayreBedinger) February 26, 2020
- WR Jerry Jeudy
- WR Brandon Aiyuk
- WR Henry Ruggs III
- WR CeeDee Lamb
- WR Jalen Reagor
- WR Gabriel Davis
- OT Jedrick Wills
- OT Tristan Wirfs
- OL Robert Hunt
- OL Cesar Ruiz
- OL Shane Lemieux
- OT Austin Jackson
3. Elway and Fangio met with J.K. Dobbins
The fact that the Broncos used one of their 45 18-minute meetings to speak with a running back is rather eye opening. Dobbins is a top five back and some have had him as high as number one in this class. Denver’s interest hints that they may be open to taking a back higher than expected, even with Phillip Lindsay and Royce Freeman under contract.
There’s obviously a decent chance Elway is just investigating in case Dobbins slides. After all, NFL teams have begun wising up to backs by and large and since the Buckeye is recovering from an injury and not expected to test at some ridiculous level he could slide.
I for one am a bit down on the idea of drafting a running back high. Smarter folks than I have written tons about all of the research proving that it’s a bad investment of limited draft capital and that the opportunity cost of taking a back over say an offensive linemen is a steep one.
I hope Elway is wise enough to recognize it.
J.K. Dobbins still isn't 100% after suffering a “very high ankle sprain” in Ohio State's loss to Clemson, and he believes the Buckeyes “definitely win that game” if he wasn't hurt. https://t.co/XzWAZXUEUT— Eleven Warriors (@11W) February 26, 2020
Still Grazin’? Some thoughts on Combine measurements.
While everyone gives lip service to the idea that workouts don’t matter to teams near as much as interviews/medicals/etc, history has shown prospects athleticism directly impacts their draft position.
With that in mind, I’m more interested in what a guy can do after he’s drafted, so these are things I’ll be keeping an eye on:
- Agility matters more than straight line speed for most positions.
- Straight line speed is obviously important for running backs, but keep their size in mind.
- Athleticism matters for receivers but there’s more to the position than just speed.
- Explosiveness matters for all of the pass catchers.
- Size, jumps, and agility drills matter for both offensive and defensive linemen. 40s don’t.
- I’m keeping a close eye on the results for edge players. It all matters.
- Linebackers don’t have to test well to find success in the league, but explosiveness helps.
Your Broncos’ Links
“He’s not going to be Johnny Unitas overnight, but he’s a guy that’s got an opportunity to get to that kind of level,” Elway said, adding that he was very pleased with how Lock handled himself as a young starter. “We’ve just got to be patient with him and continue to work with him because he still is very young.”
The Denver Broncos have decided to pick up the contract options for both Brandon McManus and Todd Davis, but not the one for Ronald Leary.
The Denver Broncos intend to wait until after the 2020 NFL Draft on a decision over Garett Bolles’ future in Denver.
There’s a rather glaring hole considering Tyreek Hill, Mike Williams, and Mecole Hardman reside in the division. If John Elway is serious about chasing the playoffs in 2020, they need to find an answer at CB1. Darius Slay provides that answer.
NFL Draft Links
8 things I think I think about Day 1 at the Combine
Some clarity on the Broncos plans emerged.
One thing that I’ve been wondering about for awhile now is how Burrow forcing the Bengals to go another way would impact the rest of the draft, in particular the Denver Broncos. This is an exercise in exploring that scenario, but keep in mind that I do expect Mike Brown to draft the LSU Tiger when it’s all said and done.
Here is a full list of weigh-ins and measurables for all of the quarterbacks, tight ends, and wide receivers on Monday.
The most important NFL Combine drills by offensive position | NFL News, Rankings and Statistics | PFF
From quarterback to offensive lineman, these are the most and least significant NFL combine drills for each position.
The most important NFL Combine drills by defensive position | NFL News, Rankings and Statistics | PFF
From interior defenders to safeties, these are the most and least significant NFL Combine drills for each position on defense.
Many have pegged Alabama’s Henry Ruggs III as the 40 favorite, with Penn State WR KJ Hamler and Utah CB Javelin Guidry as possible contenders for the fastest time in 2020. But Reagor thinks he can best Ruggs for the top mark. “That’s my plan,” Reagor said at the combine on Tuesday. “[Ruggs] runs after me. I’m going to set the bar for him.”
”They need an extra large (boat) for me,” chuckled Becton. “I don’t know how to swim – I’m used to standing up in the water. I hope that water’s not deep.”
Ohio State running back J.K. Dobbins wants to be versatile, so it’s no surprise that he picked Christian McCaffrey as the NFL back he wants to emulate. McCaffrey had 1,387 yards rushing and 1,005 receiving in 2019, his third season with Carolina. “He’s built a lot like me,” Dobbins said. “Maybe a little taller. He’s a tough runner. He can do a lot.”
”We’ll sit down, talk about the landscape of where we are, what would make sense to us and how we could make this work. We’ll get feedback from them in regard to what they’re looking for. Hopefully we can bridge a gap and make something happen, [keeping] as many of these good players on our team as possible.”
“It’s certainly a priority for us,” Veach told reporters Tuesday afternoon from the NFL scouting combine. “I think the tandem of Chris Jones and Frank Clark is something any team would want. We’re going to work hard to see if we can get that done.”
CLEVELAND (AP) — A Cleveland sports talk radio personality has been suspended indefinitely for referring to Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield as a “midget.”
Some genius created a 17-minute compilation of every bogus call from NFL referees through Week 15 of the 2019 season.