Big Board entering NFL combine
Here's where things stand as players meet with and work out for teams
As much as the workout phase of the NFL combine will be downplayed this week, that even the top NFL prospects in the draft prepare tirelessly for what they'll do in Indianapolis tells us otherwise. If the tape is exceptional, you want to confirm what we already know. If the tape raises many questions, you want to show there's more you can do, and that the system you were in didn't show everything you're capable of. Are the workouts the most important thing? Not at all. Do they matter? You bet. And the preparation makes it clear. Also key this week are getting official measurements. You'll see many cases where guys for years have been listed taller, shorter, bigger or smaller than they really are.
As is always the case, below you'll see my scouting perspective remain similar week to week unless my evaluation of a player really shifts, but I'll note updates. Please also see my rankings of the top 5 draft prospects at every position. Juniors and draft-eligible sophomores are noted with an asterisk.
Jones can solidify a very good reputation among evaluators in Indy. The tape is superb. His performance and positional value reflect this ranking, because he combines explosiveness, discipline, relentless pass-rushing ability and great intangibles and effort. (He can also cover.) He profiles as a 3-4 OLB, but he can fit any system.
A lock to be the first tackle taken, Joeckel has the ability to just swallow up even really good pass-rushers. Has a ton of experience, starting on the left since his freshman season. He can really drive people in the run game, even if he gets questions on whether he's a big finisher there.
Hard to believe he won't be a productive NFL pass-rusher. He's an extremely good athlete, with great burst, able to turn the corner on even very good tackles. A consistent performer, he got better all season. Adjusted well to playing as a defensive end in a 4-3 scheme. Can add a little weight to his frame without losing quickness. Hand play can improve, but he can really fly.
Can't be blocked one-on-one, period. He absorbs so much blocking help and frees up others, but he's not just a clogger, because he can show off a great burst and the ability to destroy plays. Has a great sense for disrupting the run game. Quick off the ball with great upper- and lower-body strength. Coaches rave.
Looking forward to his combine showing. Has great awareness. A very good pass-rusher who also defends the pass by swatting passes. Strong, but can really dip to turn the corner, showing great balance. Werner finds a way to disrupt. Reads the game really well, eyes up, which isn't easy to do when you play so fast.
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