After running 40-yard dashes and being put through their workout paces, who performed and who lacked the edge? NFL reporters were allowed to watch the two receiver sessions and filed the following pool reports:
Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma State (projected first-round pick): Considered a top-10 draft pick, Blackmon won the Biletnikoff Award as the nation's top receiver two times after catching 35 touchdowns and accumulating more than 3,000 yards over the past two seasons.
Pool report: Blackmon appeared to be protecting his sore hamstring. He did not appear to open up and really run. He bobbled one pass while
running through the gauntlet. He dropped one pass on a go route. There wasn't much to see here.
Pool report: Floyd had the near-perfect Sunday as he solidified his ratings as a top-15 pick in the 2012 draft.
The morning started out well with Floyd running 4.42 and 4.44 40-yard dashes after measuring out at 6-2 5/8 and 220 pounds. Things got even better in the passing drills. He was particularly impressive in the gauntlet drills in which receivers are asked to make seven consecutive catches from seven difference quarterbacks while running across the width of the field. Floyd displayed that he is a "hands" catcher in the drill. After he snapped each of the catches, Floyd showed enough control of the reception that he would flick the ball behind him with authority. That showed his confidence and efficiency in those drills. Nothing fazed him.
On deep passes, he showed great awareness if the pass was underthrown and made the proper adjustments. If a ball was slightly off target, he spotted the ball in flight and slowed down to make the catch. What impressed me was the authority he showed coming out of breaks. That was demonstrated when he would run a quick out to the sidelines. His first step out of the break was powerful and would be hard for any corner to cover.
Some might argue that he had a better combine workout than Blackmon, but it probably isn't enough to change the rating that Blackmon is No. 1 among the receivers.
Kendall Wright, Baylor (first round): A four-year starter at Baylor, Wright led his team each season he played and improved his numbers every year. He finished with 108 catches for 1,663 as a senior. He didn't run as fast as expected, going 4.61 in the 40-yard dash, which could hurt his status after being considered a stretch-the-field receiver and only going 5-foot-10.
Pool report: He stutter-stopped on his cut in the 13-yard comeback out route, though he did do a good job of staying in bounds to make the catch. His best catch of the day was the long seam route, which shouldn't be a surprise since that's the route he killed everyone with in college. He did have nice hand catches in both gauntlets, but he was very wavy on the line; he couldn't keep himself straight. He seems like a player who's used to outrunning his mistakes.
Wright adjusted to an overthrow inside on the short cut route. He rounded off his route a bit, though it wasn't the worst route he ran all day. The 10-yard out-and-up was more of a problem – he has a tendency to round off his routes, or start and stop instead of slamming a speed cut. He had another stutter-step on the 13-yard dig, though he made a good adjustment catch. He had decent speed on the deep route on the numbers, but couldn't catch an overthrow by Kellen Moore.
Rueben Randle, LSU (second round): Another one of the big receivers in this draft, Randle showed pretty well for a 6-foot-3 receiver, running a 4.55 40-yard dash. Randle had 53 catches for 917 yards, and it's fair to point out that he didn't have an elite quarterback throwing to him.
Pool Report: Randle was consistent throughout the workout. He framed well and snatched the ball with his hands, didn't let it get into his body.
He did not have a drop of a catchable ball and made likely the best catch of the session when he hauled in – arms outstretched – what looked to initially be an overthrow from Boise State quarterback Kellen Moore when running a deep slant-and-go to close out the session.
Mohamed Sanu, Rutgers (second round): Physically, Sanu has a little bit of everything but not a great deal of any one particular receiver commodity. He is 6-foot-2, 215 pounds – an angular athlete – but doesn't have great speed (ran a disappointing 4.67) despite averaging over 10 yards per catch in college. In 38 games played in three seasons, he amassed 210 receptions, including 115 in 2011.
Pool report: On the 13-yard comeback, he had good stride and reached out to grab the ball with his hands, keeping him in bounds. However, he
misjudged the 25-yard seam route and came up short. He had great form in the gauntlet – one of the most impressive receivers on the day. Caught every ball with his hands on the first one gauntlet (again, good technique – not a body catcher), kept his body straight on the line, and threw the balls away with ease. He was even better on the second gauntlet, adjusting to high and low throws. He had no drops in either drill, and straight-lined all the way.
He rounded off his route slightly on the short cut slant but caught the ball. He had a better cut on the 10-yard out-and-up, and adjusted to an overthrow inside to make the catch. He wasn't able to make the catch on the 13-yard dig route due to an overthrow by Russell Wilson.
On the 35-yard seam, he tracked the ball very well, turning his head at the right time and making an over-the-shoulder catch. He had a good cut-and-catch on the 13-yard inside dig, and he made OK cuts on the deep post corner, adjusting to an underthrown pass at the end.
Tim Yotter is the publisher of Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this story on our subscriber message board.