The 2018 NFL combine drills take place on March 2-5. Players have the chance to improve their draft stock, and gamblers have the chance to profit on various combine-related prop bets. Today we break down some of Saturday’s top performers in the sixth of several combine-specific pieces.
We’re halfway through the combine! A bunch of young guys of varying shapes and sizes have sprinted, jumped, and even bench pressed. Let’s take a look at some of the day’s biggest takeaways.
Quarterbacks, wide receivers, and tight ends participated in on-field workouts Saturday. Josh Allen shined brightest among the highlighted quarterbacks in our Day 2 combine preview:
Key: 40-yard (seconds) | bench | 3-cone (seconds) | 20-yard shuttle (seconds) | vertical (inches) | broad (feet and inches)
- Josh Allen | 6’4″ and 237 Pounds | (Redshirt Junior, Wyoming) | 4.75 | DNP | – | – | 33.5 | 9-11: Player Profile
- Sam Darnold | 6’3″ and 221 Pounds | (Redshirt Sophomore, USC) | 4.85 | DNP | – | – | 26.5 | 8-9: Player Profile
- Lamar Jackson | 6’2″ and 216 Pounds | (Junior, Louisville) | DNP | DNP | DNP | DNP | DNP | DNP: Player Profile
- Baker Mayfield | 6’0″ and 215 Pounds | (Redshirt Senior, Oklahoma) | 4.84 | DNP | – | – | 29 | 9-3: Player Profile
- Josh Rosen | 6’4″ and 226 Pounds | (Junior, UCLA) | 4.92 | DNP | – | – | 31 | 9-3: Player Profile
Additionally, plenty of wide receivers made their case for a higher or lower pre-draft ranking:
- Courtland Sutton | 6’4″ and 218 Pounds | (Redshirt Junior, SMU) | 4.54 | 18 | 6.57 | 4.11 | 35.5 | 10-4: Player Profile
- James Washington | 5’11″ and 213 Pounds | (Senior, OK State) | 4.54 | 14 | 7.11 | 4.32 | 34.5 | 10-0: Player Profile
- Calvin Ridley | 6’0″ and 189 Pounds | (Junior, Alabama) | 4.43 | 15 | 6.88 | 4.41 | 31 | 9-2: Player Profile
- Christian Kirk | 5’10″ and 201 Pounds | (Junior, Texas A&M) | 4.47 | 20 | 7.09 | 4.45 | 35.5 | 9-7: Player Profile
- D.J. Moore | 6’0″ and 210 Pounds | (Junior, Maryland) | 4.42 | 15 | 6.95 | 4.07 | 39.5 | 11-0: Player Profile
- D.J. Chark | 6’3″ and 199 Pounds | (Senior, LSU) | 4.34 | 16 | DNP | DNP | 40 | 10-9: Player Profile
Who Helped Their Draft Stock?
Allen’s accuracy and competition-level concerns weren’t apparent at the underwear olympics, as he finished among the combine’s three top quarterbacks in the 40-yard dash, vertical and broad jumps, and the 3-cone drill. He has solidified his status as the draft’s biggest freak under center. The rest of the position’s aforementioned alphas didn’t stand out during the speed and strength drills. South Florida’s Quinton Flowers turned in the group’s fastest 40-yard dash at 4.63 seconds. Note that he’s considering a position switch to running back.
Money was made by wide receivers on Saturday. The two D.J.’s each impressed with top-five marks in the 40-yard dash and vertical and broad jumps. SEC stars Ridley and Kirk each proved that their game-changing speed is for real, and the lesser-known Sutton continued to make his case as the year’s WR1 with top-three marks in the 3-cone drill and 60-yard shuttle. Dylan Cantrell burst onto the scene with position-high marks in the 3-cone drill and 20-yard shuttle while standing 6’3″ and weighing 226 pounds. Penn State’s Mike Gesicki turned in top marks in just about every drill, and his performance ranks among the likes of Vernon Davis and Dustin Keller for best combines by a tight end.
MVP: Even if you don’t buy the Josh Allen hype, it’s hard to deny he had the best weekend of the combine’s top quarterbacks. In a close race between the two D.J.’s, Moore takes home the crown thanks to his all-around electric performance.
Who Hurt Their Draft Stock?
Jackson was the only quarterback expected to post truly great numbers, but he chose only to throw and won’t run until Louisville’s pro day. He also has to explain why he claimed teams didn’t ask him to perform wide receiver drills when Rapsheet reported he was asked to do so (face palm). Darnold, Mayfield, and Rosen may have won over some coaches with their throwing or interviews, but their measureables were largely average or underwhelming. The majority of the combine’s signal callers hit the over on their 40-yard dash props.
Jarvis Landry and Anquan Boldin are examples of receivers who have thrived despite running a slow 40-yard dash, but it’s still not ideal for any college receiver to run a bad time at the combine. J’Mon Moore, Auden Tate, and Simmie Cobbs Jr. each failed to hit a sub-4.6 mark, although it’s undoubtedly most concerning for Moore given that Tate and Cobbs each stand at least 6’3″ and weigh over 220 pounds. Other under-sized receivers such as Washington and Ray-Ray McCloud didn’t help their stock by failing to post any top-10 marks.
LVP: This writer believes the notion that Jackson should switch to receiver is completely absurd, but unfortunately that narrative seemed to reach a fever pitch this weekend. Perhaps it only would’ve been worse if Jackson had impressed in drills, but his inactivity and mixed results throwing the ball certainly didn’t help his stock. Moore will have to hope his college production in the SEC is enough to ease concerns over his poor showing.
Who Won Bets?
Saturday featured one bet that was discussed in our Day 2 preview, along with a few others that were taken off the board throughout the week.
- Quinton Flowers fastest 40 time: Faster (+100) vs. slower (-130) than 4.58 seconds: SLOWER (-130)
- J.T. Barrett fastest 40 time: Faster (+220) vs. slower (-280) than 4.6 seconds: SLOWER (-280)
- Faster 40 time: Josh Allen (-220) vs. Josh Rosen (+180): JOSH ALLEN (-220)
- Calvin Ridley fastest 40 time: Faster (-205) vs. slower (+165) than 4.49 seconds: FASTER: (-205)
- Baker Mayfield fastest 40 time: Faster (+120) vs. slower (-150) than 4.69 seconds: SLOWER (-105)
The combine hasn’t seen many winning underdogs when it comes to gambling. Be sure to follow the event’s superlative bets to track any potential broken records throughout the rest of the weekend.
Be sure to check out our list of combine participants and 2018 NFL draft prospects throughout the weekend for updated measurements and testing information.
Photo Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports