Thursday, February 23, 2012
What to watch: Big 12 at NFL combine
By ESPN.com staff
After a few arrivals and physical examinations on Wednesday, the NFL combine picks up a bit today with some media access and player measurements. Here's the full schedule.
NFL Draft analyst Mel Kiper weighed in with a few things to watch from the Big 12 this week:
He says check out RG3 for the intrigue:
QB Robert Griffin III: Few quarterbacks listed under 6-foot-2 started NFL games this season. Only one NFL quarterback is shorter than 6 feet -- Seneca Wallace. Hey, there's no height that makes a guy great, but it's fair to say scouts and coaches take it into account. I have Griffin listed at 6-2, and my guess is he measures at that. But the combine gives us a lot of interesting measurements. Griffin seems like a lock to be a top-five pick, even more so if he's as tall as currently listed.
And on health watch? A very productive Sooner.
WR Ryan Broyles Not much more to say about Broyles. If he's progressing really well, you wouldn't be surprised to see him off the board before the third round. The question is whether a team feels he can help early.
It's too bad Broyles' injury has hurt his draft stock, but here's guessing he'll be in the NFL not long after he heals.
Here's the full list of Big 12 talents heading to Indianapolis this week.
A few things I want to see:
- Griffin won't throw until his March 21 pro day, but he'll wow NFL scouts with his physical measurables. The debate -- if you can call it that just yet -- between Andrew Luck vs. RG3 for the No. 1 pick will have to intensify this week if it's going to intensify at all. Griffin's pro day, followed by Luck on March 22, will probably decide who goes No. 1.
- Where will Ronnell Lewis project? He'll be working with the defensive ends, but it seems likely he could move to outside linebacker at the next level. He played the position early in his career at Oklahoma, but picked up his production as he matured and the Sooners moved him to the defensive line. Can he convince NFL teams in interviews he's suited for both positions? That can only help drive up his draft stock.
- Can Brandon Weeden move up? There's lots of room behind RG3 and Luck for movement in the QB rankings. Arizona State's Brock Osweiler and Texas A&M's Ryan Tannehill are the other QBs in contention for the No. 3 spot, but Weeden could solidify it with a good throwing session at the combine. He hasn't definitively decided if he'll throw, but told the Washington Post he was "leaning toward" throwing. He impressed at the Senior Bowl, though he struggled in the actual game, and he'll wow NFL teams in his interviews as well. He's quantifiably a better passer than Osweiler and Tannehill, but will age concerns make teams tentative to spend a high draft pick?
- Is Kendall Wright big enough? You can't argue with his production or his speed, but it takes a lot for a 5-foot-10, 190-pound receiver to convince an NFL team to draft him in the first round. Wright looks right on the cusp. He topped 100 catches and 1,600 yards last year, but what's he got in store at the combine?