NFL Combine 2014 Results: Tracking Every 40-Yard Dash Time

Mike ChiariFeatured ColumnistFebruary 22, 2014

NFL Combine 2014 Results: Tracking Every 40-Yard Dash Time

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    Christian Petersen/Getty Images

    There is more to the game of football than just speed, but those who run faster than everyone else certainly have an advantage. With that in mind, the 40-yard dash is the marquee workout at the NFL Scouting Combine on a yearly basis.

    Many players have improved their draft stock significantly with blazing-fast dashes over the years, while just as many have seen their value plummet with poor times.

    With on-field workouts beginning on Feb. 22, the bulk of the talk surrounding the combine will undoubtedly focus on 40 times in the coming days.

    There are even some interesting 40-yard dash subplots worth tracking, including Adidas' promise that the fastest runner wearing Adidas products will win a cool $100,000, according to Tim Newcomb of SI.com.

    The 40-yard dash is so important that many of the prospects go through special training regimens to shave time off their runs. Strength and conditioning coach Ryan Flaherty is an expert in that area, and while he admits that the 40 isn't the be-all, end-all, he fully understands what a good 40 time means to these prospects, per Anahad O'Connor of The New York Times.

    "Every team is going to be there to watch these guys work out and to see how fast they can run and how high they can jump," Flaherty said. "It's kind of a dog-and-pony show. But you have to do it."

    With that in mind, here is a full listing of every prospect taking part in the combine. As their 40 times become available, this slideshow will be updated to reflect how the prospective draftees fared.

     

    All prospects and 40 times courtesy of NFL.com.

Safeties

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    The safety position is one of the most vital to an NFL defense. Whether it’s playing a role in coverage or jumping up to stop the run, these defenders have to be fast and strong.

    Here is how the best safeties in the nation handled the combine’s 40-yard dash:

     

    PlayerSchoolBest 40 (secs)
    Terrence BrooksFlorida State4.42
    Brock Vereen Minnesota4.47
    Deone Bucannon Washington State4.49
    Marqueston HuffWyoming4.49
    Johnathan Dowling Western Kentucky4.52
    Mo AlexanderUtah State4.54
    Ed ReynoldsStanford4.57
    Ha Ha Clinton-DixAlabama4.58
    Calvin PryorLouisville4.58
    Tre BostonNorth Carolina4.59
    Isaiah LewisMichigan State4.60
    Ahmad DixonBaylor4.64
    Craig Loston LSU4.65
    Dion BaileyUSC4.66
    Daniel SorensonBYU4.67
    Kenny Ladler Vanderbilt4.70
    Nat Berhe San Diego State4.71

Defensive Backs

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    The defensive backs are always one of the main focuses of franchise across the league due to the high volume of passing plays in the NFL.

    With stars like Oklahoma State’s Justin Gilbert and TCU’s Jason Verrett getting their first chance to show what skills they possess, here is how all the DBs 40-yard dash times shook out:

     

    PlayerSchoolBest 40 (secs)
    Justin GilbertOklahoma State4.37
    Phillip GainesRice4.38
    Jason Verrett TCU4.38
    Bradley RobyOhio State4.39
    Brandon DixonNorthwest Missouri St.4.41
    Jaylen WatkinsFlorida4.41
    Kendall JamesMaine4.44
    Dontae JohnsonN.C. State4.45
    Jabari PrinceNorth Carolina4.45
    Nevin LawsonUtah State4.48
    Kyle FullerVirgina Tech4.49
    Andre HalVanderbilt4.50
    Darqueze Dennard Michigan State4.51
    Bennett JacksonNotre Dame4.51
    Keith McGill Utah4.51
    Rashaad ReynoldsOregon State4.51
    Demetri Goodson Baylor4.52
    Lamarcus JoynerFlorida State4.55
    Jemea ThomasGeorgia tech4.55
    Ross Cockrell Duke4.56
    Pierre Desir Lindenwood4.59
    Antone Exum Virginia Tech4.59
    Ricardo AllenPurdue4.61
    Stanley Jean-BaptisteNebraska4.61
    Loucheiz Purifoy Florida4.61
    Marcus RobersonFlorida4.61
    Bashaud Breeland Clemson4.62
    Bene Benwikere San Jose State4.63
    Terrance MitchellOregon4.63
    Lavelle Westbrooks Georgia Southern4.63
    Victor HamptonSouth Carolina4.69

Linebackers

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    In a pass happy league like the NFL, the serious need for elite outside linebackers has a premium on players at that position.

    Add in the necessity for reliable run stoppers that can clog the middle and drop into coverage when needed, and there is a major focus from scouts on this position group.

    This is how Buffalo’s Khalil Mack, UCLA’s Anthony Barr and the rest of the linebackers performed:

     

    PlayerSchoolBest Time (secs)
    Kevin Pierre-LouisBoston College4.51
    Telvin SmithFlorida State4.52
    Lamin BarrowLSU4.64
    Khalil MackBuffalo4.65
    Ronald PowellFlorida4.65
    Anthony BarrUCLA4.66
    Boseko Lokombo Oregon4.66
    Avery WilliamsonKentucky4.66
    Jordan TrippMontana4.67
    Adrian HubbardAlabama4.69
    Khairi Fortt California4.70
    Devon Kennard USC4.70
    Prince Shembo Notre Dame4.71
    Kyle Van Noy BYU4.71
    Anthony Hitchens Iowa4.74
    Christian JonesFlorida State4.74
    Carl BradfordArizona State4.76
    Jordan Zumwalt UCLA4.76
    Max Bullough Michigan State4.78
    James MorrisIowa4.80
    Chris Borland Wisconsin4.83
    Preston BrownLouisville4.86
    Trent MurphyStanford4.86
    Jeremiah GeorgeIowa State4.91
    Tyler StarrSouth Dakota4.95
    Yawin Smallwood Connecticut5.01
    Jonathan BrownIllinois5.03

Defensive Linemen

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    NFL football is won and lost in the trenches, and there is a serious focus from scouts across the league on the 40-yard dash times from the defensive linemen.

    While there are several big names who hit the field on Monday, few have the fanfare surrounding them that South Carolina Gamecocks defensive end Jadeveon Clowney has with his lofty expectations.

    Here is how Clowney and the other D-Linemen performed:

     

    Player SchoolBest 40 (secs)
    Jadeveon Clowney South Carolina4.47
    Chris SmithArkansas4.54
    Howard JonesShepherd4.57
    James GayleVirginia Tech4.60
    Jackson Jeffcoat Texas4.60
    Larry WebsterBloomsburg4.60
    Marcus SmithLouisville4.63
    Aaron DonaldPittsburgh4.65
    Kareem MartinNorth Carolina4.68
    Kasim Edebali Boston College4.69
    Jonathan Newsome Ball State4.69
    Will ClarkeWest Virginia4.72
    Demarcus LawrenceBoise State4.72
    Scott CrichtonOregon State4.78
    Michael SamMissouri4.79
    Zach MooreConcordia (MN4.82
    Kony Ealy Missouri4.84
    Ethan Westbrooks West Texas A&M4.85
    George Uko USC4.88
    Cassius MarshUCLA4.89
    IK Enemkpali Louisiana Tech4.90
    Caraun ReidPrinceton4.90
    Jason Bromley Syracuse4.93
    Timmy Jernigan Florida State4.93
    Tenny Palepoi Utah4.94
    Khyri ThorntonSouthern Miss4.94
    Tevin Mims South Florida4.95
    Ra'Shede Hageman Minnesota4.97
    Kerry Hyder Texas Tech4.97
    Kelcy Quarles South Carolina5.00
    Kerry WynnRichmond5.00
    Zachariah KerrDelaware5.03
    Josh MauroStanford5.11
    Justin EllisLouisiana Tech5.12
    Eathyn Manumaleuna BYU5.15
    Shamar StephenConnecticut5.17
    Mike Pennel Colorado State-Pueblo5.19
    Anthony JohnsonLSU5.25
    DaQuan JonesPenn State5.28
    Louis NixNotre Dame5.35
    Will SuttonArizona State5.35
    Ryan Carrethers Arkansas State5.44

Offensive Linemen

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    It's fair to say that speed isn't necessarily a prerequisite when it comes to being a great NFL offensive lineman. Most of them tip the scales at 300 pounds or more, so anything around the five-second mark in the 40-yard dash is considered important.

    Being able to pull and make blocks outside the hash marks is a great asset, though, which means that talent evaluators will definitely keep an eye on how the offensive linemen run.

     

    PlayerSchoolBest 40
    Matt ArmstrongGrand Valley St.5.36
    Joel BitonioNevada4.97
    Russell BodineNorth Carolina5.18
    Conor BoffeliIowa5.30
    Justin BrittMissouri5.19
    Dakota DozierFurman5.42
    Kadeem EdwardsTennessee St.5.25
    Matt FeilerBloomsburg5.37
    Cameron FlemingStanford5.28
    Zach FultonTennessee5.16
    Ryan GroyWisconsin5.19
    Jon HalapioFlorida5.34
    Jonotthan HarrisonFlorida5.15
    Seantrel HendersonMiami5.04
    James HurstNorth Carolina 
    Gabe IkardOklahoma5.13
    Gabe JacksonMississippi St.5.51
    Ja'Wuan JamesTennessee5.34
    Wesley JohnsonVanderbilt5.11
    Cyrus KouandjioAlabama5.59
    Tyler LarsenUtah St. 
    Charles Leno, Jr.Boise St. 
    Taylor LewanMichigan 4.87
    Brandon LinderMiami 5.35
    Corey LinsleyOhio St. 
    Spencer LongNebraska 
    Luke LucasKansas St. 
    Zack MartinNotre Dame 
    Marcus MartinUSC 
    Jake MatthewsTexas A&M 5.07
    Jack MewhortOhio St. 5.37
    Morgan MosesVirginia 5.35
    Matthew ParadisBoise St. 5.34
    Matt PatchanBoston College 4.97
    Antonio RichardsonTennessee 5.30
    Cyril RichardsonBaylor 5.36
    Weston RichburgColorado St. 5.10
    Greg RobinsonAuburn 4.92
    Michael SchofieldMichigan 5.01
    Anthony SteenAlabama 
    James StoneTennessee 5.17
    Bryan StorkFlorida St. 
    Xavier Su'a-FiloUCLA 5.04
    Travis SwansonArkansas 5.28
    Brandon ThomasClemson 5.09
    Billy TurnerNorth Dakota St. 5.16
    Trai TurnerLSU 4.93
    John UrschelPenn St. 5.31
    Chris WattNotre Dame 5.50
    David YankeyStanford 5.48

Tight Ends

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    One of the biggest changes in the NFL over the past couple decades has been the involvement of tight ends offensively. Being a good blocker used to be enough, but tight ends are now integral pass-catchers who are expected to run as well as many wide receivers.

    Vernon Davis of the San Francisco 49ers is the perfect example of a modern-day tight end, and he is viewed as the gold standard in terms of speed after his performance at the 2006 combine:

    4.38 speed at 254 pounds?! His name is @VernonDavis85. MUST-SEE: http://t.co/k4zFMkBuKb #FlashbackFriday

    — NFL (@nfl) February 21, 2014

    Having an athletic, field-stretching tight end can add another dimension to an offense, so the tight ends running at the combine have a golden opportunity to shake up the draft.

    North Carolina's Eric Ebron did that by running a 4.60, although his day was cut short after pulling his hamstring in his second attempt, per Bleacher Report's Dan Hope via NFL.com:

    Eric Ebron told http://t.co/GHvdFP18dp that he pulled his hamstring running his FIRST 40 (still ran a 4.50 unofficial on his second).

    — Dan Hope (@Dan_Hope) February 22, 2014

    Even so, it was a great performance that likely improved Ebron's stock considerably.

     

    PlayerSchoolBest 40
    Jace Amaro Texas Tech 4.74
    Rob Blanchflower Massachusetts 
    Trey BurtonFlorida 4.62
    Joe Don DuncanDixie St. 4.77
    Eric Ebron North Carolina 4.60
    C.J. Fiedorowicz Iowa 4.76
    Crockett Gillmore Colorado St. 4.89
    Xavier Grimble USC 
    Nic Jacobs McNeese St. 
    Marcel JensenFresno St. 4.85
    Reggie JordanMissouri Western 4.77
    A.C. LeonardTennessee St. 4.50
    Colt Lyerla Oregon 4.61
    Arthur LynchGeorgia 4.82
    Jake MurphyUtah 4.79
    Jordan Najvar Baylor 4.93
    Troy Niklas Notre Dame 
    Jacob PedersenWisconsin 4.89
    Richard RodgersCalifornia 4.87
    Austin Seferian-JenkinsWashington 
    D.J. Tialavea Utah St. 

Specialists

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    Michael Thomas/Associated Press

    Kickers, punters and long snappers aren't asked to run 40 yards down the field too often, but it does happen on occasion. Kickers and punters are the last line of defense on returns, so they do need at least a little bit of athleticism.

    Also, some NFL long snappers are fantastic in kick coverage, so running a solid 40 could get the attention of scouts. Most of the focus will be simply on kicking and snapping, but running well obviously can't hurt.

     

    PlayerSchoolBest 40
    Chris Boswell (K)Rice 
    Steven Clark (P)Auburn 
    Anthony Fera (K)Texas 
    Zach Hocker (K)Arkansas 
    Tom Hornsey (P)Memphis 
    Richie Leone (P)Houston 
    Cody Mandell (P)Alabama 4.89
    Pat O'Donnell (P)Miami 4.64
    Cairo Santos (K)Tulane 

Quarterbacks

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    The days of stationary, pocket passers seem to be quickly coming to an end in the NFL. There will always be room for guys like Peyton Manning and Tom Brady, but the quarterback position is obviously evolving. The Cam Newtons, Colin Kaepernicks, Russell Wilsons and Robert Griffins of the world are taking over, and many similar quarterbacks are poised to enter the NFL in 2014.

    Dual-threat quarterbacks such as Johnny Manziel, Blake Bortles and Teddy Bridgewater are expected to be taken among the top 10 selections in the NFL draft, and their respective 40 times could be a deciding factor since they are so close in other areas.

      

    PlayerSchoolBest 40
    Blake Bortles Central Florida4.93 
    Tajh BoydClemson4.84 
    David Fales San Jose State4.99 
    Derek CarrFresno State4.69 
    Jimmy Garoppolo Eastern Illinois4.97 
    Jordan LynchNorthern Illinois4.76 
    Johnny Manziel Texas A&M4.68 
    Jeff MathewsCornell5.26
    AJ McCarron Alabama

    4.94 

    Stephen MorrisMiami4.63
     Bryn Renner North Carolina 4.87 
     Tom SavagePittsburgh 4.97 
     Connor ShawSouth Carolina 4.66 
     Logan ThomasVirginia Tech 4.61 
     Dustin Vaughan West Texas A&M 4.95 
     Keith Wenning Ball State 5.0 
       
       
       

Running Backs

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    Although the emphasis on running backs in the NFL draft has waned in recent years, great running backs are still of the utmost importance in the NFL. No backs were taken in the first round last year, and it is entirely possible that the same will be true this year; however, those taken in the second and third round will be viewed as key players.

    Kent State running back Dri Archer is hoping to improve his stock, and he intends to make some noise in the 40, according to Andy Fenelon of NFL.com.

    "I'm going to break the record," Archer said.

    NFL running backs have such a short shelf life that teams are looking for explosive, dynamic players whom they can ride from day one, and running well in the 40-yard dash could potentially lead to a starting job immediately.

     

     

    PlayerSchoolBest 40
    Antonio Andrews Western Kentucky 4.82 
     Dri ArcherKent State 4.26 
     George AtkinsonNotre Dame 4.48 
     Kapri Bibbs Colorado State 4.67
     Alfred BlueLSU 4.63 
     Ka'Deem CareyArizona 4.70 
     J.C. CopelandLSU 4.95 
     Tim Cornett UNLV 4.48 
     Isaiah Crowell Alabama State 4.57 
    Timothy FlandersSam Houston State4.75
     David Fluellen Toledo  4.72 
     Devonta FreemanFlorida State 4.58 
     Tyler GaffneyStanford  4.49 
     Ryan Hewitt Stanford 4.87 
     Jeremy HillLSU 4.66 
     Carlos Hyde Ohio State 4.66 
     Storm JohnsonCentral Florida 4.66
     Henry JoseyMissouri 4.43 
    Tre Mason Auburn 4.50 
    Jerick McKinnon Georgia Southern4.41
     LaDarius PerkinsMississippi State 4.46 
     Silas ReddUSC 4.70 
     Bishop Sankey Washington 4.49 
     Lache Seastrunk Baylor 4.51 
     Charles SimsWest Virginia 4.48 
    Jerome Smith Syracuse 4.84 
    Lorenzo Taliaferro  Coastal Carolina 4.58 
    De'Anthony Thomas Oregon 4.50 
    Terrance West  Towson  4.54
    James WhiteWisconsin4.57 
     James Wilder Jr.Florida State 4.86
     Andre WilliamsBoston College 4.56 
    Damien WilliamsOklahoma4.45 
       
       
       
       
       
       

Wide Receivers

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    Perhaps no position relates to the 40-yard dash better than wide receiver. Most players don't need straight-line speed 40 yards down the field, but wide receivers run routes that require it routinely. According to Frank Cooney of CBSSports.com, receivers have run the three fastest 40s since 2000, and they occupy five of the top seven spots.

    Buffalo Bills wide receiver Marquise Goodwin tied the record at 4.21 seconds last year, and he seems interested to see if anyone can top him:

    #tbt Combine time... Are y'all going to beat last years 40 or nah? #2014nflcombine @nfl @nikehttp://t.co/TQXU9bdeJm

    — MARQUISE GOODWIN (@FlashGoodwin) February 20, 2014

    That is no easy task, but with so many top athletes preparing for this moment, a number of receivers are likely to come close.

     

     

    PlayerSchoolBest 40
    Jared AbbrederisWisconsin4.5 
    Davante AdamsFresno State4.56 
    Odell Beckham Jr.LSU4.43
    Kelvin BenjaminFlorida State4.61 
    Chris BoydVanderbilt 4.73 
    Corey BrownOhio State4.51 
    John Brown Pittsburg St. (KS) 4.34 
    Martavis Bryant Clemson4.42 
    Isaiah BurseFresno State4.58 
    Mike CampanaroWake Forest4.46
    Brandon ColemanRutgers4.56 
    Brandin CooksOregon State4.33 
    Damian CopelandLouisville4.50 
    Bruce EllingtonSouth Carolina4.45 
    Quincy EnunwaNebraska4.45 
    Shaq EvansUCLA4.51 
    Mike EvansTexas A&M4.53 
    Bennie FowlerMichigan State4.52 
    Austin FranklinNew Mexico State4.56 
    Jeremy GallonMichigan4.49
    Ryan GrantTulane4.64 
    Matt HazelCoastal Carolina4.5 
    Robert Herron Wyoming 4.48 
     Cody HoffmanBYU 4.65 
     Josh HuffOregon 4.51 
     Allen HurnsMiami 4.55 
     Jeff JanisSaginaw Valley St. 4.42
     T.J. JonesNotre Dame 4.48 
     Jarvis LandryLSU 4.77 
    Marqise LeeUSC4.52
     Marcus LucasMissouri 4.6 
     Jordan Matthews Vanderbilt 4.46 
     Donte MoncriefMississippi 4.4 
     Kevin NorwoodAlabama 4.48 
     Walt PowellMurray State 4.63 
     Tevin ReeseBaylor 4.46 
     Paul RichardsonColorado 4.4 
     Allen RobinsonPenn State 4.6 
    Jalen Saunders Oklahoma 4.44 
    Willie SneadBall State4.62
     Josh StewartOklahoma State 4.69 
     Devin StreetPittsburgh 4.55 
     L'Damian WashingtonMissouri 4.46 
     Sammy WatkinsClemson 4.43 
     Albert WilsonGeorgia State 4.43 
       
       
       
       

Defensive Linemen

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    When it comes to defensive linemen, 40 times run the gamut from hugely important to almost insignificant. Smaller, speed pass-rushers need to run well in order to ease concerns regarding their strength disadvantage. Big defensive tackles, on the other hand, don't need to be as fast as they are quick.

    Even so, the 40-yard dash times are a nice barometer of athleticism and explosiveness. Teams will usually go with the faster player if everything else is equal, so defensive linemen can't afford to phone it in.

Linebackers

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    As the athleticism and speed of tight ends have increased, the same can be said for linebackers. Having great instincts used to be enough for a linebacker to be great at the NFL level, but they are asked to do so much currently that some measure of speed is an absolute must.

    Whether it's getting outside to stop a toss play, rushing the quarterback or dropping back into pass coverage, linebackers have tons of responsibilities that require speed. Don't be surprised if some linebackers manage to run as fast or faster than tight ends or even wide receivers at the combine.

Cornerbacks

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    As wide receivers get faster, so do cornerbacks. Corners need to be able to backpedal quickly, which is something that isn't really measured at the combine, but they do need straight-line speed as well in order to cover deep patterns down the field.

    Also, corners are becoming increasingly important in terms of stopping the run, and speed factors in significantly. Many of the best corners in NFL history have been able to attack the ball and make things happen after forcing turnovers, and speed has plenty to do with it.

Safeties

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    Like linebackers, safeties are asked to do any number of things on the field. That involves playing close to the line, helping out in coverage over the top and even covering tight ends, running backs and wide receivers man-on-man. Being a big hitter is nice, but it can be argued that speed is even more important for NFL safeties these days.

    There aren't many highly touted safeties in the 2014 class, but perhaps a few can change that by tearing it up in the 40.