When watching the NFL Scouting Combine you may have a tendency to devote your attention to big names like Cam Newton and A.J. Green.
But some like to watch to see if they can spot an under-the radar player who will surprise the NFL once he signs onto a team.
Some of these players go unnoticed because they started out as basketball players from small schools. One example of that is Antonio Gates, who was undrafted out of Kent State because he was a basketball player, now a Pro Bowl tight end for the San Diego Chargers.
There is, perhaps, another converted basketball player who will catch a few eyes in the NFL. That player is Abilene Christian wide receiver Edmund (what do you know, his last name is) Gates.
In the 2010 college football season, Gates caught 66 passes for Abilene Christian for 1,182 yards and 13 touchdowns. According to Sterling Sharpe, he is a Greg Jennings type of wideout.
At the Scouting Combine, he posted unofficial 40-yard dash times of 4.35 and 4.36. If that is any indication, he can also be a Dante Hall or Devin Hester type.
Gates already has NFL connections via his friendship with Chicago Bears wideout Johnny Knox. Abilene Christian has been kind to the Bears, by the way, giving us Knox and Daniel Manning.
Chicago could use a wideout. Hmm...
Check out Drew Rosten's Sports Thread at http://drewrosten.blogspot.com for more coverage of the NFL Scouting Combine and other sports coverage.