Blowing up the combine

4/23/2012 - NFL
RG3 impressed at the combine. But is a 40-yard dash the best way to test a quarterback's skills? Joe Robbins/Getty Images

EVERY YEAR, THE NFL PUTS PROSPECTS TO THE ATHLETIC TEST at the combine -- and every year the results deceive. The easy fix? Test skills, not raw talent. these five drills are a good start.

What does throwing to stationary targets on an empty field tell you about a quarterback's ability to come through in the clutch? Not much. Enter my two-minute drill. You'd have the QB prospect, plus a running back and two wide receivers, line up at their own 20-yard line. Then you'd call a succession of long and short routes signaled in through a headset as the clock winds down. You'd want to see how quickly and efficiently the QB calls multiple plays in the huddle, spikes the ball when necessary, works the sidelines and keeps the chains moving. It'd be smart to include at least one gaffe in the process, like a headset that goes haywire or a wide receiver who fails to get out of bounds. Only the strong at heart will thrive.