NFL Draft: Five standout performers from Scouting Combine


Saquon Barkley is not guaranteed to be the first overall selection in April's NFL Draft, but after a torrid Combine performance last week, it's a pretty good possibility.

Although he had already earned a spot in the top 20 on my draft board, Alexander had plenty of doubters entering the Combine.

When people ask me why I watch the draft or follow the combine I have no answer.

Taven Bryan, DT, Florida: A popular pick for the Falcons in several mock drafts, including our own Matt Tabeek's, Bryan had a very good combine performance. On top of that, there's the 40 time of Shaquem Griffin, the weird world of Orlando Brown and whatever forces players to leave Miami early and then bomb the combine.

The Broncos have options in this draft at the quarterback position and while they search for the next face of the franchise, they must not feel obligated to find that player through free agency.

For the uninitiated, the National Football League scouting combine, which wraps up its seven-day run Monday, is where prospective draftees go to great lengths to get noticed. At 6-5 and 247 pounds, Gesicki clocked a 4.54 40-yard, 41.5-inch vertical, 10-feet-9 broad jump, 6.76 three-cone drill and 4.10 short shuttle. According to draft experts, Mayfield is more talented than Manziel [VIDEO] as he has great footwork and is a dynamic passer.

Much has been made of the pending contract negotiations for defensive tackle Aaron Donald, who tied a career high with 11.0 sacks in 2017 en route to being named AP Defensive Player of the Year.

He ran a 4.38 in the 40-yard-dash, tying his brother Shaquill Griffin (Seattle Seahawks third round pick) from a year ago despite weighing 23 pounds more than him. He also impressed scouts with his performance in the positional drills, showcasing his solid hands and long arms. Darius Slay blazed a 4.36-second 40-yard dash back when he was at the 2013 combine. Eisen came in at 5.97 seconds, the second time in the 13 times he's run the 40 at the combine that he came in under 6 seconds.

James had a broad jump of 11 feet while hitting 40 inches on the vertical. Brown is able to compensate for his lack of athleticism on the field with his wide base and wingspan, but the low numbers he posted in Indianapolis will be an anchor on his draft grade, most likely out of the top-two rounds.