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Post-Combine NFL Draft Stock Report for Every Position

Jon DoveContributor IFebruary 26, 2013

Post-Combine NFL Draft Stock Report for Every Position

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    The NFL Combine has wrapped up and several players saw their draft stock move somewhat. Not all the prospects had a positive experience, as some failed to display the athleticism expected of them.

    The combine isn't the only tool evaluators use to determine a prospect's upside, but it does play a role.

    West Virginia's Tavon Austin, Notre Dame's Tyler Eifert and Oklahoma's Lane Johnson were some of the prospects that really helped themselves. Others, like Damontre Moore and Manti Te'o, generated some negative buzz with their performances.

    Check out the rest of the article to see who else saw some movement this week.

    All combine results courtesy of NFL.com.

Quarterback

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    Stock Up: Geno Smith, West Virginia

    Geno Smith took some flak for skipping the Senior Bowl, but he made up for that by fully participating at the combine. Throughout the day, he showed good athleticism and a solid throwing motion. His 4.59 40-time was a bit of a surprise, as he doesn't appear that fast on film.

    Smith's speed isn't really what evaluators came for. They all wanted to see how he handled the pressure and threw the football. He provided a glimpse of his arm strength, accuracy and touch.

    The interview process is also an important part of each team's evaluation. Teams don't typically talk about the outcome of these interviews, so it's tough to really factor this into a stock report.

     

    Stock Down: Mike Glennon, NC State

    Even in a setting where the quarterback doesn't face live defenders, Mike Glennon showed the same tendencies that make his stock so fluid. He boasts terrific arm strength and size, but he's too inconsistent with his ball placement.

    It's time everyone starts to realize that Glennon is a project quarterback. He just isn't ready to step in and immediately start for an NFL team. However, this doesn't mean he won't have a successful career. Glennon just needs good coaching and time to reach that point.

Running Back

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    Stock Up: Knile Davis, Arkansas

    Injuries and lack of production over the past two seasons have really hurt Knile Davis' draft stock. However, his impressive 4.37 40 time will absolutely have a positive effect. This shows that he's fully healthy and ready to live up to expectations.

    Prior to his major knee injury, Davis was getting some attention as a potential first-round pick. His 40 time won't push him back into that range, but it could put him into the mid-round mix.

     

    Stock Up: Johnathan Franklin, UCLA

    Johnathan Franklin is a little on the thin side, so that's why his good 40 time (4.49) is important. He relies on his quickness and speed to make plays. Franklin uses that quickness to impact the game in both the running and passing attack.

    Showing this type of explosiveness matches up with what I've seen on tape. This is a player who can provide big plays and score from anywhere on the field. Franklin's stock might not have a significant rise, but solidifying what people see on film is equally as important.

     

    Stock Down: Ray Graham, Pitt

    Ray Graham is a smaller running back who didn't show top-end speed at the combine. His 4.80 40 time was among the worst out of the running back group. This limits his upside.

    Graham is more of a shifty runner, but lacking good overall speed will keep him from making big plays. He'll also struggle outpacing defensive angles and attacking the edge.

     

    Stock Down: Andre Ellington, Clemson

    Andre Ellington's poor showing in the 40-yard dash brings up some questions concerning his training efforts. He shows a ton of quickness and game-breaking ability in game situations. However, his 4.61 40 time speaks to some concerns about his overall speed.

    This might be because of a lack of speed or training. The 40-yard dash is an event that requires training to ensure a good start. That first step sets the tone for the entire run.

    Whatever the reason, Ellington's stock was hurt by his combine appearance.

Wide Receiver

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    Stock Up: Tavon Austin, West Virginia

    Tavon Austin's strength is his shiftiness and ability to create in space. This has more to do with lateral quickness than straight line speed.

    However, Austin illustrated with his 4.34 40 time that he also boasts excellent overall speed.

    Everything he did during the combine showed that he's a hard worker. He put up an impressive 14 reps in the bench press. His strength, combined with his 40 time, helped solidify his spot as a first-round prospect on my board.

    It's important to also mention that he showed excellent hands and natural catching ability throughout the drills.

    Austin's rising stock can also be seen with the data tables created by First Round Exchange. This site uses expert mock drafts to determine the stock of a prospect. Since February 19, Austin has seen a 36.5 percent rise.

     

    Stock Up: Ryan Swope, Texas A&M

    While evaluating Ryan Swope, I saw a player who lacks the explosiveness to attack the deep part of the field. He looked more like a savvy wide receiver who had a good feel for the position. However, his 4.34 40 time will force me to go back and take another look.

    Forcing evaluators to re-think their opinion is the most any prospect can hope to gain from the combine.

     

    Stock Down: Keenan Allen, California

    Keenan Allen has produced enough throughout his college career to earn first-round consideration. However, his inability to work out at the combine allowed several receivers to pass him on the pecking order.

    The draft process is about momentum and leaving a positive impression. Evaluators won't hold Allen's injury against him, but they'll elevate other prospects based on their impressive performances. Because of the closeness of this wide receiver class, it's possible teams moved several players ahead of him.

Tight End

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    Stock Up: Tyler Eifert, Notre Dame

    Tyler Eifert used the combine to solidify himself as the top tight end prospect available in this draft. He backed up his game film by showing top-notch speed, leaping ability and hands. It also helped that other top tight end prospects didn't have great showings at the combine.

    Outside of his 40 time (4.68), Eifert's 22 reps in the bench press were also impressive. This helps improve his potential as a blocker.

     

    Stock Down: Gavin Escobar, San Diego State

    Mike Mayock talked a lot about the upside of San Diego State's Gavin Escobar. However, Escobar failed to impress at the combine. He ran a disappointing 4.84 40 time and had a few drops during the receiving drills.

    His 40 time backed up what I saw while evaluating him. He's a mythological runner who doesn't show good explosiveness.

     

    Stock Down: Zach Ertz, Stanford

    Zach Ertz had a terrific college career and has plenty of upside at the next level. However, the combine exposed some concerns.

    The biggest issue is his lack of arm length. This and his 30.5-inch vertical brings into question his ability to make plays in jump-ball situations.

    His 4.76 40 time was also very average, as he was topped by the much heavier Dion Sims.

    Ertz won't slide too far because of this performance, but it should ensure that he falls into the second or third round.

Offensive Line

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    Stock Up: Jonathan Cooper, UNC

    Jonathan Cooper made a strong early impression with his public interview. He's a well-spoken and very personable individual.

    Cooper followed up that strong start by putting up 35 reps in the bench press and a respectable 5.07 40-yard dash.

    Cooper doesn't get nearly the amount of press as a Chance Warmack, but there's not much separating the two guard prospects. Don't be surprised if both come off the board inside the top 15.

     

    Stock Up: Terron Armstead, Arkansas-Pine Bluff

    The combine provides a great opportunity for small-school prospects. Arkansas-Pine Bluff's Terron Armstead took full advantage of this chance. He posted an insanely quick 4.71 40-yard dash that shocked many.

    Armstead also proved that he isn't just an athlete by putting up 31 reps in the bench press. This performance will force several evaluators to go back and give him a second look.

    He's still a mid-round prospect, but could go much earlier based on his upside.

     

    Stock Up: Lane Johnson, Oklahoma

    Lane Johnson is an obvious athlete, and he proved it to everyone with his combine numbers. Johnson ran an excellent 40-yard dash (4.72), flashed fluid movements during the three-cone drill and strength with his 28 reps in the bench press.

    Johnson likely solidified himself as a first-round pick this weekend.

     

    Stock Up: Brian Schwenke, California

    The pecking order at the center position is still very much up for grabs. Brian Schwenke used a solid performance at the Senior Bowl and combine to stake his claim. During the combine, he showed a good combination of strength and athleticism.

    His 31 reps on the bench press put him tied for eighth out of the offensive lineman group, while he also finished second in the three-cone drill.

    Schwenke's play on the field matches what he did at the combine. Don't be surprised if he's the first center off the board in April.

     

    Stock Down: Travis Fredrick, Wisconsin

    Wisconsin is known for developing offensive linemen who go on to have solid NFL careers. Travis Fredrick is the next in line to make the jump to the NFL. His stock took a slight hit at the combine, though, because of his poor showing in the bench press.

    Fredrick is a big-bodied interior lineman who needs good strength to get a push off the ball. This is why his 21 reps in the bench press were a disappointment.

     

    Stock Down: Justin Pugh, Syracuse

    Justin Pugh's draft stock depends heavily on his potential to play offensive tackle at the next level. That thought took a hit this weekend when his arm length measured in at 32 inches. Tackles need long arms to keep defenders off their body and protect the edge.

    This measurement likely means Pugh will need to kick inside to guard, a position that carries significantly less value than a tackle.

     

    Stock Down: Khaled Holmes, USC

    Khaled Holmes flashed a ton of potential throughout his college career. However, injuries have kept him from really fulfilling his promise. His injury history is absolutely a major concern for any team looking to select him in the upcoming draft.

    This is why his injury during the bench press portion of the combine is noteworthy. It's likely a large number of teams put a big red flag next to Holmes' name.

Defensive Line

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    Stock Up: Dion Jordan, Oregon

    Dion Jordan's athleticism and explosiveness is easily visible every time he takes the field. So, it wasn't much of a surprise to see him run a 4.60 40-yard dash. This performance only backs up what Jordan showed while at Oregon.

    However, it's still amazing to see someone with his length and build show this type of athleticism. This was also on display throughout the other drills. Jordan possesses just as much fluidity as he does explosiveness.

     

    Stock Up: Trevardo Williams, Connecticut

    Nobody can list potential winners of the combine without mentioning Trevardo Williams. He put up the best 40 time among the defensive linemen while also showing good strength. His 4.57 40 time speaks to his ability to generate pressure off the edge.

    Williams' 30 reps in the bench press will help teams see him more as a defensive end. Because of his lack of ideal size, some believe it'll be tough for Williams to hold at the point of attack. His bench press numbers tell a different story.

     

    Stock Up: Sharrif Floyd, Florida

    Sharrif Floyd's solid showing at the combine came at the same time as Star Lotulelei's health scare. I'm sure Floyd doesn't want to benefit from someone else's misfortune, but he still gets a bump from this situation.

    Floyd's 4.92 40 time backs up the explosiveness he shows on the field. The one issue facing him is his consistency, which isn't something that can be judged through combine workouts. However, there's little question it was addressed during the interview process.

     

    Stock Up: Corey Lemonier, Auburn

    Production makes up a major part of a prospect's draft stock. Corey Lemonier's production doesn't match up with the numbers he put up at the combine. However, running a 4.60 in the 40-yard dash will force evaluators to take a closer look.

    Lemonier also weighed in at a respectable 255 pounds. Both this and his 27 reps in the bench press helps his case to play defensive end at the next level.

     

    Stock Up: Datone Jones, UCLA

    Datone Jones might be one of the more versatile defenders in this draft class. He has the size to possibly play some three-technique and five-technique. His quickness and explosive first step could allow him to play a traditional defensive end role.

    Jones used the combine to lock down his spot as an early second-round prospect. There's a good chance he even sneaks into the first round.

     

    Stock Down: Damontre Moore, Texas A&M

    It's tough to pin-point a prospect who had a worse combine than Damontre Moore. His 12 reps in the bench press are a major concern. Defensive ends need to have good upper-body strength to hold at the point of attack, employ a bull rush and disengage from blocks.

    Moore's 4.95 40 time is even more of an issue than his bench press numbers. Most of his value is tied up in his ability to generate pressure off the edge. He'll need more explosiveness than this to make an impact at the next level.

     

    Stock Down: Tourek Williams, Florida International

    I had Tourek WIlliams as one of my top sleepers in this draft class. On the field, he shows a good burst and the ability to generate pressure off the edge. The problem, however, is that his 4.92 40 time at 260 pounds doesn't support the idea that Williams is an explosive player.

Linebacker

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    Stock Up: Cornelius Washington, Georgia

    Cornelius Washington displayed both top-notch strength and explosiveness. He led the linebacker group with 36 reps on the bench press while also running an impressive 4.55 40 time at 265 pounds. Those type of workout numbers will earn him some extra looks.

    Washington had a solid career at Georgia, but was overshadowed by Jarvis Jones and Alec Ogletree. He made a point at the combine to make sure everyone noticed him.

     

    Stock Up: Sio Moore, Connecticut

    Sio Moore didn't receive much attention during the season because he comes from a struggling Connecticut program. However, his strong play during the Senior Bowl and now at the combine have gained him some recognition.

    Moore is a versatile player who features the ability to play in either a 4-3 or 3-4 system. His strong performance throughout the draft process will make him an intriguing second-round prospect.

     

    Stock Up: Jon Bostic, Florida

    There weren't many who expected to see Jon Bostic run such a quick 40 time. The fact that he did so after weighing in at 245 pounds and putting up 22 reps in the bench press only makes this more impressive. These numbers come together to support the production he showed on the field.

    Don't be surprised if Bostic hears his named called in the third round.

     

    Stock Up: Jamie Collins, Southern Mississippi

    Jamie Collins is among the major combine winners. He ranked near the top of the linebacker group in every category. This is the type of player teams will fall in love with because of his athleticism. His upside is through the roof.

    However, don't expect his name to be called before the third round.

     

    Stock Up: A.J. Klein, Iowa State

    A.J. Klein had a highly productive career at Iowa State. His 4.66 40 time should silence any doubts about his quickness and athleticism. He instantly becomes one of the better middle linebacker prospects.

    Klein has a chance to be a real steal for someone in the middle part of this draft.

     

    Stock Down: Manti Te'o, Notre Dame

    Despite all the recent negativity, Manti Te'o still had a very productive college career. However, his stock has taken a hit because of a string of negative attention. The fake-girlfriend situation brought into question his maturity, and now his athleticism is coming into question.

    Te'o posted a below-average 4.82 time in the 40-yard dash. At this point, the negative momentum surrounding his draft stock is threatening to push him into the second round.

     

    Stock Down: Bruce Taylor, Virginia Tech

    Weighing in at 237 pounds and running a 5.01 40-time isn't a good combination for Bruce Taylor. The good news for Taylor is that he features good instincts. This is what helps him overcome his lack of quickness.

    Still, this is the type of showing that will have a negative impact on his draft position.

Defensive Back

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    Stock Up: Dee Milliner, Alabama

    Alabama's Dee Milliner doesn't flash elite quickness on the field, but that's mainly because he prefers to play a physical style of football. His 4.37 40 time at the combine shows that he has the speed needed to excel at the next level.

    This excellent time increases his versatility as someone who could match up against both quicker and big-bodied targets. It'll be a shock if he makes out of the top 10.

     

    Stock Up: Darius Slay, Mississippi State

    Darius Slay was a little overlooked at Mississippi State because his teammate, Johnthan Banks, got more media attention. However, his production on the field was right on par with Banks. He tends to play a physical brand of football, but his 4.36 40 time shows his speed.

    Slay still projects as a mid-round pick, but don't be surprised if he comes off the board in the early parts of the third round.

     

    Stock Up: Desmond Trufant, Washington

    Washington's Desmond Trufant is another physical cornerback who also showed that he has some quickness. His top-end speed was really the only major question mark facing his draft stock. It's safe to say Trufant locked down a spot in the second round with his 4.38 40 time.

    Stock Up: Jamar Taylor, Boise State

    The 40-yard dash shows the explosiveness of a prospect's first step and his long speed. However, the fluidity of a prospect's hips also plays a major role. Boise State's Jamar Taylor used the combine to show everyone he excels in both areas.

    His combine performance backs up what he showed through out his college career.

     

    Stock Up: Tyrann Mathieu, LSU

    LSU's Tyrann Mathieu has seen his draft stock hit rock bottom after several off-the-field issues. The combine was his first opportunity to build some positive momentum. Mathieu posted a solid 4.50 40 time and competed well in the other events.

    He has a long way to go before he rebuilds his stock, but this was a great start.

     

    Stock Up: Shamarko Thomas, Syracuse

    Outside of the draft community and Syracuse football fans, there are not a lot of people familiar with Syracuse's Shamarko Thomas. However, his name will be more recognizable after his solid showing at the combine.

    Thomas displayed excellent athleticism to go along with his solid on-field production. His future is as a safety at the next level, not to mention a possible top-end special teams contributor.

    Look for Thomas to come off the board somewhere in the fourth round.

     

    Stock Up: Xavier Rhodes, Florida State

    The combination of Xavier Rhodes' strong combine performance and Johnthan Banks' struggles will force a change in many rankings. Both are talented corners who like to play close to the line of scrimmage. However, Florida State's Rhodes posted a much better 40-time.

    It's highly likely that Rhodes sealed up his spot as the No. 2 cornerback on most team's board.

     

    Stock Down: Johnthan Banks, Mississippi State

    The issue with focusing on a prospect's 40 time is that it overlooks their play on the field. This is something that will happen to Mississippi State's  Banks. His 4.61 40 time was a major disappointment for the first-round hopeful.

    Some teams will use this time to push him down down the board. However, Banks features the type of instincts and feel for the game to overcome this lack of top-end speed.

     

    Stock Down: Tony Jefferson, Oklahoma

    Oklahoma's Tony Jefferson is in a different situation than Banks, as his poor 40 time brings concerns about his range. Jefferson's play suggests that he gets by mainly with his athleticism and quickness. He has a tendency to take some poor angles and misread his keys.

    This is why his 4.75 40 time is a red flag, as it increases his vulnerability for big plays.

     

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