For those invited and participating in the 2015 NFL Combine, what matters? What did they need to do? How was the workout? What to take away from …
1. Ereck Flowers, Miami 6-6, 329
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Can he build off his fantastic offseason workouts and practices? He might not be polished, but if he can look athletic to go along with his prototype size, he’ll be seen as a potential franchise option if given a little bit of time. He has to prove that he’s worth the investment and patience.
Key To The Workout: While it wasn’t a perfect workout, and it was a bit clunky at times, his 37 reps on the bench might have moved him up to No. 1 on several offensive tackle charts. He wasn’t fast, and he wasn’t all that quick, but he was just smooth enough and showed just good enough feet to consider him a true franchise left tackle.
2. Brandon Scherff, Iowa 6-5, 319
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: He’ll destroy the bench, but can he move? The more agile he looks, and the quicker he is, the more he’ll cement himself as a top 15 selection. Some might peg him as a Right Tackle Only if he doesn’t have the lateral athleticism.
Key To The Workout: Uh oh. Is he a tackle? He ran relatively well with a 5.05 40 and he moved okay, but he looked far more like a guard than a tackle – his future is going to be in the interior. However, he came up with a stunningly awful bench with just 23 reps. That’s hardly a be-all-end-all, but it wasn’t a positive. His stock dropped.
3. Andrus Peat, Stanford 6-7, 313
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Stanford offensive linemen always look the part and seem like they should be prototypes, and they’ve – to generalize – underwhelmed. He has to show he’s going to be a killer who wants to destroy his man – that has to come across in the interviews.
Key To The Workout: To absolutely no one’s surprise, he looked great. He didn’t stand out in any one area, but he had a great workout overall and was smooth as glass at times. Athletic and quick, it was the type of workout that reinforced anyone’s previously held belief that he might be special.
4. T.J. Clemmings, Pittsburgh 6-5, 309
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: How fast is he along in the process? He’s going to be fantastic in the drills and he’ll look like the prototype, but the tools won’t always match the tape. He’s the hot prospect of the moment and is being seen as a possible top ten overall pick, and he’ll look it – the homework has to be done to make sure that he’s ready to step in and start tomorrow.
Key To The Workout: The analysts are probably going to like his workout better than it actually was. He was great in the explosive jumping drills, and he looked lean and athletic – sort of like a big tight end – but he was a little smaller than expected and wasn’t nearly as quick or as fast time-wise as expected.
5. La'el Collins, LSU 6-4, 305
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Is he a blasting, run-blocking guard in a tackle’s body? He might be a Right Tackle Only, and he might be a fantastic Right Tackle Only, but his stock needs him to crank up the athleticism.
Key To The Workout: Absolutely terrific. He came into Indy as purely a right tackle, and he’s leaving as a possible franchise blocker on the left side. He was smooth for a player of his size, and he ran and cut well. He looked the part.
6. Cameron Erving, Florida State 6-5, 313
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Raw strength would be a plus. The bench might be overrated and overblown, but if he rocks it, all of a sudden his versatile and strength overcomes his lack of raw bulk. He needs to show some quickness as a pass protector – he has to prove he’s not a jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none.
Key To The Workout: If you came into Indy liking him as a tackle, he did what he needed to do. If you came into Indy thinking he’d be a top center, he certainly showed that. Really, really quick, and with 30 reps on the bench, in terms of numbers and proving his versatility, it couldn’t have gone better.
7. Cedric Ogbuehi, Texas A&M 6-5, 306
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: When is his knee going to be ready? He suffered a torn ACL late in the year, and he’s not going to be able to lift, but there’s still a question about overcoming the technical problems. He could be a great value pick outside of the first round, but he has to eventually show something at an elite level – that’s going to take a while before he heals up.
Key To The Workout: Still getting over his knee injury he has to run, but he needed to show off some strength and didn’t do it. The 23 reps on the bench aren’t a deal-breaker, but considering he wasn’t able to do anything else, it wasn’t a positive lift.
8. Daryl Williams, Oklahoma 6-6, 329
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: All that matters are the agility drills. The size is there, the power isn’t in question, and he has the right attitude, but he has to be able to move. If he can’t, he falls out of the first round and into the Right Tackle Only category.
Key To The Workout: It was good enough. He wasn’t all that explosive in the leaping drills, and he wasn’t fast, but he moved well enough for his size to soften any previously held beliefs that he couldn’t move. His pro day needs to be better, but it was a good Friday.
9. Jake Fisher, Oregon 6-6, 306
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: He’s not for every style, and he somehow has to show that he’s more than just a zone-blocking tackle. He’ll interview well, and he’ll say all the right things, but he has to either show he’ll be able to add at least 15 good pounds, or he’ll be limited.
Key To The Workout: It seemed like it took him forever to get his 40 started, but the results were great once he got going with a 5.01. His game is about quickness and athleticism, and he was really, really quick and really, really athletic. He did exactly what he was supposed to do, and more.
10. Ty Sambrailo, Colorado State 6-6, 311
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: All eyes will be on the bench press. There’s obviously a difference between functional strength and lifting 225 in Indy, but he has to show off the pop and power. However, there are few linemen at the top end who can help themselves more with one big workout.
Key To The Workout: A scouting favorite this offseason, and even seen by some as a possible first rounder, he was quick with a 7.54 three-cone drill, but he was slow in the 40 with a 5.36 and he didn’t help the knock that he’s not strong enough with just 23 reps on the bench.
11. Rob Havenstein, Wisconsin 6-7, 321
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Is his size actually a problem? Can he look like a left tackle in terms of bending and agility? He’s not a guard, and he might not be a franchise pass protector, so someone has to lock him in to being a mainstay right tackle – he has to look agile.
Key To The Workout: Not exactly smooth, he was slow in the short drills and he took ten years – 5.46 – to get through his 40. With long arms, no one is going to care about the 16 reps on the bench, but he didn’t do anything athletically to help himself.
12. Donovan Smith, Penn State 6-6, 338
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Agility, agility, agility. He might turn out to be a guard considering his power and size, but if he wants to go early, and if he wants to be a tackle, he has to move like one.
Key To The Workout: It was good enough. He’s going to end up making his money as a guard, and he came up with a good 26 reps on the bench and was just quick enough to look okay. He’s hardly fluid, but he wasn’t lumbering, either.
13. D.J. Humphries, Florida 6-5, 307
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: More potential than production, he needs to be polished and needs to be keep the minor technique mistakes – even in the mundane Combine drills – to a bare minimum. A great bench press would be a big help.
Key To The Workout: Fantastic. He added about ten pounds and was still really, really athletic. The 26 reps on the bench did what he needed to do, and he moved great in the short drills, He might have upped his stock in a huge way – he’s going to force the scouts to look back at the tape.
14. Jeremiah Poutasi, Utah 6-5, 335
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Can he move? He’s as strong as they come, and he’s overpower anyone he get his hands on, but does he have any feet? The agility drills and his athleticism will be closely evaluated.
Key To The Workout: He had to show that he could move, and he couldn’t There wasn’t much pop in the jumping drills, and he was way too slow through the cones. The 26 reps on the bench were fine, and he might have shown that he’ll end up as a guard.
15. Jamon Brown, Louisville 6-4, 323
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Is he in shape? Looks the part, has the right size, and has a little bit of versatility, but if he wants to be a tackle, he has to show off the feet and the agility. Otherwise, he’ll be pegged as a guard – no one will think he’s a next-level left tackle.
Key To The Workout: He didn’t do the drills and needs a great pro day. He was two inches shorter than expected, but he’s looking more and more like a guard.
16. Tayo Fabuluje, TCU 6-6, 353
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Way too big, can he move well enough to be a tackle? Will he be able to slim down and work around 330 pounds? He’s a bit of a project, but he has to prove he’s worth the wait – and if he can maybe play guard if need be.
Key To The Workout: He’s a guard. The 5.55 40 isn’t that big a deal, but he’s way too heavy to be a tackle and he didn’t move well enough to be on the outside. He’ll never be a left tackle at 353 pounds.
17. Ali Marpet, Hobart 6-4, 307
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Obviously, it’s all about whether or not he can adjust to the bigger competition, so he just needs to look close to the part. He did that at the Senior Bowl, and now he simply has to be one of the boys. He doesn’t have to dominate, but he has to fun and move like everyone else.
Key To The Workout: Really, really, really good. Not just quick and athletic, he was fast with a sub-5 40 to go along with some outstanding movement in the short and cone drills. The 30 reps on the bench were fantastic to go along with the athleticism. It’s possible he had the best workout of any tackle prospect.
18. Terry Poole, San Diego State 6-5, 307
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Can he move? Does he have any feet? Great run blocker, questionable pass protector, he has to be excellent in the agility drills or else he’s destined to be a guard.
Key To The Workout: Excellent, he exploded in the leaping drills – especially the broad jump – and was relatively fast in the 40 cranking out a 5.09. He moved well, showed off better feet than expected, and did what he needed to do to show that he might be a pass protector.
19. Jamil Douglas, Arizona State 6-4, 304
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Power. Just a good bench press won’t be enough – he has to look like he can deliver a strike and bring the explosion to the running game. He can move, but now he has to hit.
Key To The Workout: It was okay, but not good enough. If there was any though that he was a tackle, he might have blown that away by not quite looking or moving smoothly enough. It wasn’t an awful workout, and he didn’t stand out in a bad way, but he didn’t do anything special.
20. Corey Robinson, South Carolina 6-7, 324
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Way too big to be a regular NFL left tackle, can he lose weight? Can he play guard and have enough flexibility to handle being an interior run blocker? The lateral movement has to be there to work at right tackle.
Key To The Workout: He showed up in shape about 20 pounds lighter than his originally listed weight. He didn’t run in the drills, but the 28 reps were okay for a player with his long arms. More than anything else, though, again, he lost some of the raw bulk he needed to shed.
21. Austin Shepherd, Alabama 6-4, 315
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Is he more than a try-hard type? Everyone is going to love him in interviews, and everyone is going to want him to succeed, but he has to be athletic enough to project as a tackle. He might be destined as a swing guard unless he shows off the tools.
Key To The Workout: Yuck. 17 reps on the bench were a huge problem, and he was way, way slow to ever be an NFL tackle. More of a football player than a workout warrior, don’t get caught up in the mediocre day. It’s going to be a hard sell for some scouts, though.
22. Eric Lefeld, Cincinnati 6-6, 310 (Not Invited)
Does he have the pop and the power? In offseason workouts he’ll be tested for his raw strength and toughness. He’s a good enough pass protector to get by, but he needs the all-around game to be an NFL right tackle. He’s not considered athletic enough – he’ll have to prove everyone wrong.
23. Tyrus Thompson, Oklahoma 6-5, 324
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: The interview process is the key. He has the body, but can he bury his man in the ground game? Can he move well enough to shine in pass protection? He’ll have to convince GMs that he’s ready to be a mid-to-late round steal.
Key To The Workout: It was okay considering he didn’t run. The 29 reps on the bunch were great considering his long arms, and he was quick enough to get by in the short drills, but the biggest positive was his bulk – he lost some. He came in relative shape dropping some of his bad weight, but he was still really, really big.
24. Sean Hickey, Syracuse 6-5, 309
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Not big enough, not athletic enough, not powerful enough. He has to come up with something to show that he’s going to be more than an NFL backup.
Key To The Workout: He added some weight putting on over ten pounds, and while he didn’t run, he killed the bench press with 35 reps. At the very least he looked like a possible guard or key backup for a variety of spots.
25. Mitch Morse, Missouri 6-5, 305
What He Needed To Prove In Indy: Can he add a little more good weight? Can he bring a little more power? He has upside as a backup at either tackle spot, but something about his skills have to stand out.
Key To The Workout: If you wanted raw power and strength, he came through in a big way with 36 reps on the bench. With decent speed and quickness, and looking okay through the cones, now he might really be a prospect worth working with.
OTHERS IN INDIANAPOLIS (in alphabetical order)
Al Bond, Memphis 6-3, 300
Brett Boyko, UNLV 6-7, 310
Takoby Cofield, Duke 6-4, 305
Rob Crisp, North Carolina State 6-7, 300
Andrew Donnal, Iowa 6-6, 305
Laurence Gibson, Virginia Tech 6-6, 300
Chaz Green, Florida 6-5, 300
Chad Hamilton, Coastal Carolina 6-2, 305
Bobby Hart, Florida State 6-4, 320
Darrian Miller, Kentucky 6-5, 293
2015 NFL Combine: Offensive Tackle Workouts
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