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USC Football: Tracking 2014 NFL Combine Results for Former Trojans Stars

Trenise FerreiraUSC Lead WriterFebruary 21, 2014

USC Football: Tracking 2014 NFL Combine Results for Former Trojans Stars

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    7 Trojans are in the 2014 Draft. How will they fare?
    7 Trojans are in the 2014 Draft. How will they fare?Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    The next crop of talented athletes hoping for a chance at the professional level will travel to Indianapolis this weekend for the 2014 NFL combine.

    USC will have seven Trojan representatives who will work out and perform drills in front of NFL coaches and scouts. If all goes well, it will be a very productive weekend for the handful of Trojans who are hoping to be a part of USC's rich NFL tradition. 

    If you're looking for a complete draft tracker for all things USC, we got you covered.

    Without further ado, here's a look at which Trojans are looking to improve their draft stock this weekend, listed in alphabetical order.

     

    All draft projections provided by Bleacher Report's Matt Miller and Huge Upside.

S Dion Bailey

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    Dion Bailey makes a play against the Stanford Cardinal.
    Dion Bailey makes a play against the Stanford Cardinal.Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

    Combine Results

    • Bench-press reps: DNP
    • 40-yard dash: 4.66 
    • Vertical jump: 34 in.
    • Broad jump: 9'4" (113 in.)
    • Three-cone drill: DNP
    • 20-yard shuffle: DNP
    • 60-yard shuffle: DNP

    Draft Projections: Fourth round (No. 102 overall), Cleveland Browns

    Bailey enters the NFL combine having played both linebacker and safety at USC, so he has that working for him in terms of draftability. The 5'11", 200-pound athlete has good hands and has come through for the Trojans by making big plays at each position. He racked up a handful of accolades in college, which should help improve his resume in the eyes of scouts.

    That said, he's considered a "tweener" by NFL standards, wafting between having ideal measurables for a linebacker or a safety.

    Bailey will look to show scouts at the combine that he has improved in coverage and that he has the skill set to contend with elite wide receivers at the next level.

TE Xavier Grimble

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    Xavier Grimble was one of USC's most reliable, if underused, talents in 2013.
    Xavier Grimble was one of USC's most reliable, if underused, talents in 2013.Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

    Combine Results

    • Bench-press reps: DNP
    • 40-yard dash: DNP
    • Vertical jump: 26.5 in.
    • Broad jump: 9'4" (113.0 in.)
    • Three-cone drill: DNP
    • 20-yard shuffle: DNP
    • 60-yard shuffle: DNP

    Draft Projections: Free Agent

    Grimble's decision to leave USC early after a so-so career has been met with much skepticism, so he especially will be looking to use the combine to boost his draft stock. He's not listed on Mel Kiper's top 10 tight ends list (subscription required), and scouts aren't too keen on him just yet.

    However, h has the size and build (6'4", 257 pounds) to excel at the next level, and he did relatively well at USC, despite being hampered by injuries and playing in a scheme that didn't feed him the ball that often. The USC pedigree also works in his favor, as former Trojans tight ends like Jordan Cameron, Anthony McCoy, David Ausberry and Fred Davis have all flourished at the next level. 

LB Devon Kennard

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    Devon Kennard makes a play against Utah State.
    Devon Kennard makes a play against Utah State.Harry How/Getty Images

    Combine Results

    • Bench-press reps: 23
    • 40-yard dash: 4.70
    • Vertical jump: 30.0 in. 
    • Broad jump: 9'4" (113 in.)
    • Three-cone drill: DNP
    • 20-yard shuffle: DNP
    • 60-yard shuffle: DNP

    Draft Projection: Sixth round (No. 185 overall), San Diego Chargers

    Having played middle linebacker, defensive end and outside linebacker at USC, Kennard brings a lot of versatility to the NFL combine. The Lott IMPACT Trophy finalist missed all of 2012 due to a torn pectoral injury but returned in 2013 with a vengeance.

    The 6'3", 257-pound linebacker led the Trojans in sacks (nine) and racked up 60 tackles on the season. Kennard has the frame, skill set and toughness to be competitive as a hybrid linebacker/defensive end at the next level. He also has the advantage of an NFL pedigree: His father Derek Kennard played for the Dallas Cowboys in the '90s. 

    On the flip side, Kennard's initial explosion is limited, and he needs to develop more pass-rush moves. He will spend the weekend showing scouts that he has improved both of those aspects of his game. He will also want to show that despite having played multiple positions in college, he is a sure bet for an outside linebacker role at the next level. 

    He additionally excelled in the classroom and the community—two things that NFL scouts will like about him. As an underclassman, he was awarded USC's John McKay award (given to the top-performing underclassmen), and as a veteran, he was dubbed Most Inspirational by his teammates and coaches and won the Trojan Football Alumni Club Award for highest GPA.

    Kennard was also voted a team captain in 2013, which speaks to his skills as a leader. 

WR Marqise Lee

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    Marqise Lee was one of USC's most dynamic playmakers throughout his collegiate career.
    Marqise Lee was one of USC's most dynamic playmakers throughout his collegiate career.Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

    Combine Results

    • Bench-press reps: DNP
    • 40-yard dash: 4.52
    • Vertical jump: 38 in.
    • Broad jump: 10'7" (127 in.)
    • Three-cone drill: DNP
    • 20-yard shuffle: DNP
    • 60-yard shuffle: DNP

    Draft Projection: First round (No. 16 overall), Baltimore Ravens

    Of all the Trojans participating in the combine, Lee enters in arguably the best position. He has three years worth of film that sizzles with jaw-dropping catchings and moments where he shredded defenses.

    The 6'0", 192-pound wide receiver has a handful of USC and Pac-12 records that speak to just how dynamic he was on the field. He's incredibly athletic and has a knack for gaining yards after the catch, as well as a demonstrated ability to elevate himself to snag balls out of the air.

    At the combine, Lee will want to show scouts an improved ability to run routes, and that despite his size, he has the toughness and endurance to hold onto the ball after contact. His long-term durability is questionable due to various injuries he suffered in college, so he will want to show that he is still a sure bet. 

OL Marcus Martin

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    Despite finishing 2013 with an injury, Marcus Martin is one of the top center prospects in this year's draft.
    Despite finishing 2013 with an injury, Marcus Martin is one of the top center prospects in this year's draft.Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

    Combine Results

    • Bench-press reps: 23
    • 40-yard dash: DNP
    • Vertical jump: DNP
    • Broad jump: DNP
    • Three-cone drill: DNP
    • 20-yard shuffle: DNP
    • 60-yard shuffle: DNP

    Draft Projection: Fifth round (No. 159 overall), Denver Broncos

    Martin is another Trojan whose decision to leave early was met with skepticism, but the center has steadily improved his draft stock throughout the offseason. He sits in the top spot of Mel Kiper's top 10 centers list (subscription required), and that's impressive for Martin, as he only played center for one season. He spent his first two years in Troy as a left guard, so that display of versatility will help him in the eyes of scouts.

    That said, he will use his time at the combine to show that he's more than just a big, physical presence. He will want to leave the impression that he has the aggressive streak and grit to succeed at the next level, and that he can display his presence on the O-line the way his size (6'3", 320 pounds) would suggest he can. 

TB Silas Redd

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    Silas Redd hurdles a California defender.
    Silas Redd hurdles a California defender.Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

    Combine Results

    • Bench-press reps: 18
    • 40-yard dash: 4.68
    • Vertical jump: 37 in.
    • Broad jump: 10'2" (122 in.)
    • Three-cone drill: DNP
    • 20-yard shuffle: DNP
    • 60-yard shuffle: DNP

    Draft Projections: Free Agent

    Redd's journey to USC from Penn State didn't pan out the way he intended, but he was a great addition to the running back corps regardless. Injuries hampered his ability to shine in 2013 and the latter parts of 2012, but when he did suit up to play, we saw a bruising back who could pound the rock and dared opposing defenses to tackle him.

    The 5'10", 212-pound running back wasn't afraid of a little contact and would often fight through tackles for extra yards.

    At the combine, he will need to show scouts that his surgically repaired knee can hold up at the next level. That will be the most important thing for Redd, as he tries to move up the draft boards and become a late-round pick. 

DT George Uko

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    One of USC's top interior linemen, Uko elected to leave college early in favor of a shot at the NFL.
    One of USC's top interior linemen, Uko elected to leave college early in favor of a shot at the NFL.Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sport

    Combine Results

    • Bench-press reps: 18
    • 40-yard dash: 4.99
    • Vertical jump: 29.5 in.
    • Broad jump: 9'2" (110 in.)
    • Three-cone drill: DNP
    • 20-yard shuffle: DNP
    • 60-yard shuffle: DNP

    Draft Projections: Fifth round (No. 140 overall), New York Giants

    Uko stands to gain the most of all the Trojans who are participating in the combine, because like Grimble, he doesn't have a deep body of work. He had moments of greatness in his career but not enough to see him go in the early rounds of the draft.

    The 6'4", 275-pound tackle needs to show scouts that he's gotten more agile and that he has the pass-rush moves that will help him succeed at the next level. He isn't ranked in Mel Kiper's top 10 defensive tackles, but if all goes well at the combine, he will crack that elite group. 

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