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2017 NFL Combine: Winners, losers from Friday in Indianapolis

The running back class showed its insane depth, and the likely No. 1 overall pick showed he’s a freaky specimen.


Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M

Garrett, the presumptive No. 1 overall pick is colossal. He measured in at 6’4 1/2” and 272 pounds with a 35 1/4” arms, which makes for an 82 5/8” wingspan. He’s essentially a Greek god with wings. With a strong on-field workout tomorrow, it’ll be hard for the Browns not to pick him with the first selection in the 2017 draft.

Alvin Kamara, RB, Tennessee

His official 40-yard dash time of 4.56 didn’t turn heads, but his 39.5” vertical and nearly 11-foot broad jump speak to his explosiveness and burst. Those two jumps were both the best among all running backs. There’s some Round 1 chatter for Kamara.

Jayon Brown, LB, UCLA

Vastly underrated, Brown is a coverage linebacker with springy athleticism. Before the combine, his consensus listing was 5’11” and 220 pounds, pretty small for an NFL linebacker. In Indy, he measured in at an even 6’0” and 231 pounds, the same height and two pounds heavier than Round 1 prospect Reuben Foster from Alabama. Brown very well may make the most money flashing his fluidity during his workouts but many teams are presumably happy with his height and especially his weight.

Christian McCaffrey, RB, Stanford

On Thursday, McCaffrey said he felt a bit disrespected as a member of this loaded running back class. On Friday, he proved himself on the field. The former Stanford star zoomed to an official 4.48 in his 40-yard-dash, had a 37.5” vertical, and to me, most importantly, he his three-cone time was 6.57, which is insanely quick. In fact, it’s the second-fastest three-cone among all running backs dating back to 2003. An impressive showing was expected in the agility drills for McCaffrey, but actually seeing 6.57 was startling, in a good way.

Tarik Cohen, RB, North Carolina A&T

At 5’6” and 180 pounds from a Division II school, Cohen is fighting an uphill battle in this running back class. He scored 56 touchdowns in four seasons and capped his amazing collegiate career with a 7.5 yards-per-carry, 18 rushing touchdown campaign. Among the Division 1 backs, Cohen did what he needed to do — by standing out in a particular drill. His official 4.42 in the 40 was the third-best among the running back group. There’s a lot of Darren Sproles to his game. Sproles ran 4.46 at 5’6” and 187 pounds back in 2005/.


Leonard Fournette, RB, LSU

Fournette’s 28.5” vertical was really disappointing, especially for someone lauded as an “explosive speed” running back. There was buzz he’d run in the 4.4s in the 40, which would have set the combine ablaze, yet he ran an official 4.51. Mind you, that’s still fast for someone of his stature. He just fell short of some lofty expectations.

Jabrill Peppers, LB / S, Michigan

Though a safety at Michigan, Peppers has been labeled as a linebacker during the draft process. For him to measure in at 5’11” and 213 pounds wasn’t good. Teams will likely be concerned about his ability to hold up in the box against 300-plus pound pulling guards and centers.

Derek Barnett, DE / OLB, Tennessee

Barnett’s weigh-in wasn’t at all a deal-breaker, but many believed he’d be heavier than 259 pounds. At 6’3”, the Tennessee standout has a reasonable edge-rusher profile. If the lower-than-expected weight leads to a better showing on the field this weekend, all will be good.

Dalvin Cook, RB, Florida State

Running 4.49 — a few hundredths of a second faster than Fournette — was a positive. However, Cook is only 210 pounds to Fournette’s 240. His broad jump under 10” wasn’t fantastic either. Cook will probably be one of the first two running backs selected come April, yet he didn’t have the greatest workout in Indy.