Penn Staters at the 2014 NFL Combine
The 2014 NFL Combine concluded yesterday, and Penn State had some familiar faces in attendance, as three Nittany Lions participated. Here is analysis of the numbers Allen Robinson, John Urschel, and DaQuan Jones put up in Indianapolis.
By the numbers: WR Allen Robinson (6-foot-2; 32-inch arms; 220 pounds; 9 1/2-inch hands)
40-yard dash: 4.60 seconds (T-37th)
Vertical: 39.0 inches (T-6th)
Broad jump: 127.0 inches (T-3rd)
3-cone drill: 7.00 seconds (17th)
20-yard shuttle: 4.00 seconds (7th)
60-yard shuttle: 11.36 seconds (6th)
Depending on which draft guru you listened to, Robinson came into the combine with anywhere from a late first to early third round grade for May’s NFL Draft. ESPN has him ranked as the tenth-best wide receiver and 62nd-best overall player in this draft.
Robinson’s 40 yard dash time wasn’t particularly fast, but that really isn’t his game. Robinson is a reliable pass catcher, and can be trusted to make grabs over the middle and use his 39-inch vertical to come down with jump balls, like he did against Michigan last season. His type of speed is suited for beating defenders off the line and evading would-be tacklers between the hashes, not for burning corners on a straight line.
Robinson may be overshadowed by some of the bigger names in the draft, like Clemson’s Sammy Watkins, Texas A&M’s Mike Evans, USC’s Marquise Lee, LSU’s Odell Beckham, and Florida State’s Kelvin Benjamin. However, his dynamic skill set, which helped him become a first-team All-American selection last year, should turn him into an impact receiver at the next level in no time.
By the numbers: OG John Urschel (6-foot-3; 33-inch arms; 313 pounds; 10 3/8-inch hands)
40-yard dash: 5.31 seconds (26th)
Bench press: 30 reps (T-8th)
Vertical: 29 inches (T-5th)
Broad jump: 102.0 inches (T-21st)
3-cone drill: 7.55 seconds (9th)
20-yard shuttle: 4.47 seconds (T-6th)
John Urschel had a very good combine, as his numbers were some of the best among offensive linemen. Of course, Urschel is expected to put up an amazing score on the Wonderlic test, which is given during the Combine as a way to measure an athlete’s cognitive abilities.
Urschel is one of the better pulling guards in the draft, and possesses solid footwork for someone with his build. However, he plays short armed, and never showed overpowering explosiveness off the line of scrimmage during his time at Penn State.
That said, John Urschel is somebody who knows his assignment, and will give you every last ounce of effort to get it done. His scrappiness should interest many teams later in the draft, and ESPN has him ranked as the 94th best player available, which should put him at the end of the third round.
By the numbers: DT DaQuan Jones (6-foot-4; 33 1/2-inch arms; 322 pounds; 9 5/8-inch hands)
40-yard dash: 5.35 seconds (39th)
Bench press: 25 reps (T-20th)
Vertical: 27.5 inches (35th)
Broad jump: 101.0 inches (35th)
DaQuan Jones is a large man — the first-team All-Big Ten selection used that massive frame to rack up tackles for loss this past season. However, Jones is not the slightest of foot, and this was evident in his slow 40-yard dash time.
What Jones lacks in overall speed, he makes up for in explosiveness off the snap and quickness while engaging blockers. He uses his hands well to get off of blocks and disrupts the play with strong bull rushing ability.
Jones will probably not hear his name called on day one, but according to CBS, he’s a second- or third-round prospect due to the fact that he can play in both the 4-3 and 3-4 defensive schemes effectively.