On day one of the on-field drills, we saw the OLs and the RBs take the field. In recent years this has been the 1st day pairing instead of what used to be the OLs and the TEs. This makes more sense due to how they need to work with each other during the game. Most of what a RB does is very dependent on the OL and they need to now how to read each other on the field. The TE spot fits better with the QBs and WRs on Saturday as most TEs now are just big WRs.
Running Backs Group
This year there are a lot of solid RB options, but there isn’t the stud RB like we’ve seen recently with Gurley, Elliott, Barkley, or even Fournette, who went early. This is the year that maybe one gets taken in round one, but most will get taken on day two. I personally think Darrell Henderson of Memphis is the top RB, but most have Josh Jacobs of Alabama. Henderson showed well with a 4.49 forty and had 22 bench reps. Jacobs did not compete in any of-field drills.
Running Backs Highlight
The two players that stood out and helped their draft stock were Miles Sanders of Penn St and Ryquell Armstead of Temple. Sanders put up 20 bench press reps and ran a 4.49 forty. He had the best 3-cone drill of 6.89 and was the 3rd fastest at the 20-yard mark at 4.19. Armstead, at 220 pounds, put up an impressive time of 4.45 in the forty, 2nd best. He also got up 22 bench press reps and had the 5th best 3-cone drill of 7.02. Both players are still likely to go on day three.
Running Backs Disappointment
There were also two disappointments in the RB group, Devin Singletary of Florida Atlantic, and Elijah Holyfield of Georgia. The biggest part of Singletary’s outlook was his speed and quickness, he showed neither in the drills. He did not finish in the top 10 of any drill they ran. It was just a day to forget for Singletary. Holyfield was just as bad. Despite finishing with the 3rd best bench press reps with 26, he had the 2nd slowest forty time of anyone with 4.78 and was in the bottom half of everyone in every drill.
Offensive Linemen Group
This year may not have the stud, top three, type OL, but there is still a lot of good talent. The best value round for the OL will likely be the 2nd round. However, there are still certain players that have 1st round grades on them, and with this draft being defensive dominant, it may push a OL, who may start the next 10 years, down the line to someone at the end of the 1st round or very early in round two. There were some guys who really stood out today and likely guaranteed their 1st round status.
Offensive Linemen Highlight
The obvious star of the OL was Garrett Bradbury of NC St. Most already had Bradbury as the to Center, but his performance today may have gotten him into the back end of the 1st round. At 6’3 306 pounds, Bradbury had the 3rd best forty time of 4.92. He also showed off his strength with the 2nd most bench press reps with 34. He showed off a quick jump off and great short area movement with his 7.41 3-cone drill, which was tops of all OL. He made himself a couple million out there.
Offensive Linemen Disappointment
I have to call out 3 guys here. Jonah Williams of Alabama measured out with shorter arms than ideal for a starting OT. He had a slow 3-cone drill and only had 23 bench press reps. Cody Ford of Oklahoma is being talked about as an OT, but today showed he probably would have better success at G. He was slow on the forty and 3-cone drill. He had a dreadful bench press with 19 reps. Greg Little of Mississippi looked bad with his drills and didn’t even compete in the bench press. His interviews also didn’t help.
All in all, it was a good day for kicking off the on-field drills at the combine. To be completely honest, this day probably has the lowest ranking of overall talent if you had to judge it against the next three days, but it was still good to see the young talent that could be gracing the sidelines of your football team next year. Next up will be the day that is typically look at as the main event, the QBs. Even though Kyler Murray will not be throwing, I’m sure it will be a day to not miss, and if you do, I’ll have you covered.