The 2013 NFL combine came and went, and with it a crop of players severely boosted their stock heading into April’s draft.
These workout warriors were able to sprint, jump and bench their way up numerous scouts and general managers big boards, but that doesn’t mean they’ll find success out on the field.
Let’s take a look at some players that simply don’t possess the actual football talent to excel, despite displaying freakish athleticism in Indianapolis.
All combine stats and measurements courtesy of NFL.com
Margus Hunt, DE, SMU
This Estonian product absolutely crushed his workouts at the combine, but his heart and tackling ability truly leave something to be desired.
Hunt was initially brought to Dallas to help revive the Mustangs’ track and field program (he was a world class shot put and discuss thrower in his youth) but wound up playing defensive end on the football team.
At 6’8” and 277 pounds, this big foreigner certainly looks the part of a quarterback’s nightmare and run-stopping lineman, but he just doesn’t seem to have it all together yet.
One big concern is that at age 25, Hunt doesn’t have time to waste developing. The poor form he shows in tackling and refusal to use his entire body is something that may not be fixable at this point in time.
While he ran a ridiculous 4.60 40-yard dash and bench pressed an insane 38 repetitions, we doubt Hunt will turn into much besides a workout wonder unless he mans up.
Shamarko Thomas, S, Syracuse
While the Orange’s safety didn’t have the greatest size measurements in Indy (5’9”, 213 lbs.), he did dazzle with some of the best numbers of all the defensive backs in his drills.
Thomas ran a blazing 4.42 40-yard dash, threw up 28 reps on the bench, had a crazy 40.5 inch vertical, leaped a whopping 133.0 inches in the broad jump and completed the 20-yard shuttle in just 4.26 seconds.
Those are crazy figures that certainly had fans buzzing, and we imagine scouts couldn’t move this DB up their big board fast enough.
However, the small stature is eventually going to hamstring him in the NFL, as it certainly didn’t help him to become an elite player during his time at Syracuse.
Thomas’ lack of hands is going to hurt his ability to snag interceptions on the limited opportunities he has to out jump receivers, and his transition to guarding top-flight, tall wideouts at the next level looks to be difficult.
We’re not counting out Thomas just yet, but his road to success will be difficult.
Trevardo Williams, DE, Connecticut
This Jamaican native certainly possesses the speed that has put his country on the map for sprinting prowess.
Will Williams pan out in the NFL?
After running an eye-popping 4.57 40-yard dash, plus reaching 38 inches of vertical and 124 inches on his broad jump, Williams proved that the athleticism could transfer over to football as well.
However, we have a lot of concerns about his 6’1”, 241-pound frame. He’s extremely undersized for a 4-3 system, and even a bit small to play in a 3-4. We could potentially see a tight end shutting him down if they lock on, and that’s just not something that happens to elite pass-rushers.
We’re sure Williams could use his speed to get around the edge, but he has to bulk up and get stronger (30 bench reps) in order to become a legitimate NFL DE. Until then, mark this Huskies product down as a potential bust.