NFL Combine Day 5: SEC QBs better athletes than passers
Auburn’s Nick Marshall may not be the only SEC quarterback in the 2015 NFL draft class that needs to change positions in order to build a professional football career.
After working with the cornerbacks at the Senior Bowl and declaring he’d be content making the switch away from quarterback, Marshall did throw for NFL scouts in Indianapolis, though he’s also working out as a defensive back for select teams.
His 4.54 40-yard dash is excellent for a quarterback, but slow for a corner. His 37.5-inch vertical leap should come in handy when combined with his size and frame. Regardless, Marshall didn’t do anything major on Saturday to change his projection as a late-round project as a defensive back.
N. Marshall should just put on his DB colors & get ready for Monday's drills. Drop back & arm action is terribly inconsistent…not a QB.
— Brian Billick (@CoachBillick) February 21, 2015
The only other SEC quarterback in Indianapolis, Blake Sims of Alabama, also worked out. While Oregon’s Marcus Mariota and Florida State’s Jameis Winston generated tons of buzz with tremendous workouts, especially throwing the ball, Sims had analysts talking position switch.
Sims also went sub-4.6 as a quarterback, prompting some to wonder if he should join Marshall in his quest to become an NFL defensive back.
If Blake Sims wants to attempt to make it in the NFL, it’s going to have to be at another position besides QB. I think he could be a safety.
— Bryan Fischer (@BryanDFischer) February 21, 2015
Meanwhile, Georgia WR Chris Conley stole the Combine spotlight from Auburn WR Sammie Coates with one of the best workouts by a single receiver in years.
Conley and Coates both showed inconsistent hands during drills, but did plenty to show off their off-the-charts athleticism.
SEC fans also will be denied the opportunity to see what would’ve been quite a show Sunday, as potential Top 10 pick Shane Ray of Missouri won’t participate in the on-field portion of the Combine.
Missouri DE Shane Ray, potential top-10 pick, won't be competing in drills tomorrow due to injury. #NFLCombine
— Chase Goodbread (@ChaseGoodbread) February 21, 2015
Expect Missouri’s pro day to draw all sorts of attention from NFL scouts.
Though West Virginia’s Kevin White made a strong showing both in receiver drills and in the raw athletic tests, Alabama’s Amari Cooper looked solid running the gauntlet and ran a 4.42, faster than some expected. He put himself in good position to be the first receiver off the board. The consensus discussion Saturday among respected draft analysts was that Cooper is the more polished player and White is the player with higher upside.
Alabama strong safety Landon Collins weighed in on Saturday morning at 228 pounds, and looked NFL-ready as a thumper.
Here are the results of Saturday’s on-field drills, which featured quarterbacks, running backs and receivers.
|Mike Davis||South Carolina||RB||4.61||17||—||—|
|Josh Robinson||Mississippi State||RB||4.70||21||—||—|
|Trey Williams||Texas A&M||RB||4.49||18||—||—|