Florida defensive tackle Sharrif Floyd used the workouts to illustrate why he is rated at the top of his positional heap heading into the 2013 NFL Draft. Simply put, Floyd had a great performance at the Combine. He ran the 40 in a stunning 4.87 seconds, unofficially, with a 10-yard split of 1.68 seconds. Floyd was also phenomenal in the field drills with quick feet and good movement skills. It was obvious that the 6-fo0t-3, 297-pounder has amazing athleticism for an interior defensive lineman. The Combine helped confirm Floyd’s high first-round grade.
There is no doubt that Oregon outside linebacker Dion Jordan is dripping with athleticism. He put on a clinic at the Combine with a blazing unofficial 40 time of 4.53 seconds (4.60 officially) and a 10-yard split of 1.57 seconds. While the times were excellent, Jordan was even better in the field work. He was extremely fluid, showing off super fast feet as he flew through the bags. Jordan looked awesome dropping into coverage as a linebacker. He did that well in college, so it wasn’t a surprise that he looked like a natural in these drills. Jordan (6-6, 248) needs to gain weight, but he clearly is a perfect fit as a 3-4 outside linebacker.
BYU defensive end/outside linebacker Ezekiel Ansah showed off his supreme athleticism. The 6-foot-5, 271-pounder ran a impressive 40 time of 4.62 seconds unofficially with a 10-yard split of 1.56. Ansah then did well in the field drills and gave more proof that he can handle outside linebacker in a 3-4 defense. Despite not even having seen a football game before he arrived on the BYU campus from Ghana, Ansah is an athletic freak and he did his part to maintain his early first-round status.
SMU defensive end Margus Hunt is another defensive freak. The 6-foot-8, 277-pounder put his track background on display in the workouts. He had an official 40 time of 4.60 with a 10-yard split of 1.62. That was tied for the third-fastest time. In the bag drills, Hunt showed that he is a natural bender and moved extremely well. He has very quick feet and was smooth moving between the pads. However, the big man is not all speed and finesse. The giant also tied for the lead with all the defensive linemen with 38 reps on the bench press. He truly is a rare specimen with his unique combination of size, speed and strength. Hunt’s big Combine performance isn’t a surprise, but he definitely helped himself. As for draft position, I’m standing firm on his mid- to late-second grade. He is long and athletic but I just don’t know about him with his slender frame.
Connecticut outside linebacker/defensive end Trevardo Williams is definitely a workout warrior, but he also has enjoyed quite a bit of production over the course of his collegiate career. The 6-foot-1, 241-pounder blazed an official 40 time of 4.57 seconds with a mark of 1.61 in the 10-yard split. Williams was the fastest of all the defensive linemen. He also was very impressive in the bench press with 30 reps. That is a huge total for a sub-250 defender. Williams helped differentiate himself at the Combine.
Texas A&M defensive end Damontre Moore had a disappointing Combine after a phenomenal year at Texas A&M. The projected top five-overall selection ran a slow 40 time at 4.87 seconds unofficially (4.95 officially) with 1.69 in the 10-yard split. Moore made a second attempt at the 40, but pulled up with a leg injury. Worse than the 40, the 6-foot-5, 250-pounder managed only 12 reps on the bench press; the lowest total of any defensive lineman. Moore did at least manage to put together decent numbers in the broad jump (122) and vertical jump (35.5). However, it is easily Moore’s strength that is the biggest red flag and it could cause teams to reevaluate him.
It wasn’t surprising that LSU outside linebacker Barkevious Mingo looked good at the Combine. The event simply helped to confirm what everybody already knows, and that Mingo is extremely athletic. Mingo had one of the fastest 40 times at 4.58 seconds with a 10-yard split of 1.55 seconds. He was explosive in the field drills, too. Mingo did extremely well dropping into coverage and was very fluid in and out of his breaks. The 6-foot-4, 241-pounder is a player who thrives in space and clearly isn’t big enough to play defensive end in the pros. Mingo used the Combine to show that his athletic ability is legitimate.
One highly regarded defensive end who had a mildly disappointing performance was Florida State’s Bjoern Werner. His official 40 time was a slower-than-average 4.83 seconds, including a 10-yard split of 1.66 seconds. Werner did better in the defensive line field drills as he showed good feet and burst. Werner (6-3, 266) was asked to participate in the 3-4 outside linebacker drills as well, but he looked stiff in flipping his hips and redirecting. Werner’s outing at the Combine demonstrated that he isn’t a great fit as a 3-4 edge linebacker and would need development if he’s drafted into that scheme.
Ohio State defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins ran the 40 at a time of 5.31 seconds officially with a slow 10-yard split of 1.80. It wasn’t a good time for Hankins, but not terrible for a heavy tackle. Hankins didn’t do enough at the Combine to narrow the gap with the higher-ranked players like Floyd, but also didn’t hurt himself at all either. A few other defensive linemen are worth mentioning.
Missouri’s Sheldon Richardson (5.02), North Carolina’s Sylvester Williams (5.03) and UCLA’s Datone Jones (4.80) all had solid Combine performances. They had decent times, but didn’t blow anyone away. None of the trio hurt or helped themselves significantly.