NFL combine day 1: Offensive linemen, tight ends crank things up
Player interviews are wrapping up, and NFL combine participants are throwing on the tights and getting ready to fight for hundreths of seconds in the workout portions of the pre-draft event. A few Pac-12 players got it cranked up Saturday as offensive linemen and tight ends went through the rounds.
-- Stanford Cardinal offensive lineman David Yankey might be the class of the all the offensive guard participants at the combine, but he's getting some fine competition from a fellow Pac-12 player. UCLA Bruins guard Xavier Su'a-Filo is challenging Yankey for the title, and Sports Illustrated Audibles blogger Doug Farrar, among others, thinks he's rising up the draft boards and could be a first-round pick. Su'a-Filo came in seventh among offensive linemen in the 40-yard dash with a 5.04 second run. He was tied for third of the linemen in the 20-yard shuttle, but he's also impressed in interviews.
-- Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and in ASU defensive tackle Will Sutton's case, it seems there are differing opinions. Sutton made a living as a 280-pound defensive lineman, but he bulked up to more than 300 pounds in his final season as a Sun Devil. His numbers dipped -- he was double-teamed, of course -- but scouts seemed worried about his weight leading into the combine. Sutton is apparently down to 303 pounds but while some teams want him to drop weight, the Green Bay Packers like him bigger, reports NFL.com.
-- UCLA linebacker Anthony Barr wants to go No. 1 overall, and he can do that by blowing away the competition. Per NFL.com:
"I just kind of want to blow (teams) out of the water, really. I want them to look and say, 'Yeah, that guy's the No. 1 draft pick.' "
-- While most players are concerned with team interviews and measurements, Washington Huskies tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins was hurt by a medical exam that will keep him out of the running portions of the combine. He expected to go through all the running drills but was a late scratch. According to DraftInsider.com's Tony Pauline, Seferian-Jenkins has a foot fracture and could even be out for a pro day. Seferian-Jenkins did put up 20 reps on the bench press.
-- The Utah Utes have two tight ends at the combine. Jake Murphy put up 20 reps in the bench press, sixth-best at his position. He ran a 4.79 40-yard dash, was second in the 20-yard shuttle, fourth in the three-cone drill and top-15 in the broad jump. The other Utes tight end, A.J. Denham, impressed NFLDraftScout.com's Dane Brugler with his fluidity.
-- The running backs got a little warmed up on Saturday by completing the bench press portion of their combine experience. Washington's Bishop Sankey stood out by putting up 26 repetitions, good enough for second place for his position behind Georgia Southern's Jerick McKinnon, who had 32 reps.
-- Arizona running back Ka'Deem Carey had 19 reps on his bench press workout, which was a tie for 13th among running backs. The biggest part of the combine for the UA back comes in the next few days, when can can show scouts he has the speed that's believed to be a question mark.
-- Carey had a nice conversation with Matthew Fairburn of SB Nation. He talked about Arizona's football team, the East Coast Bias, and how he sees himself as a combination of LeSean McCoy and Adrian Peterson.