Combine News and Notes
Of the eight Trojans at the NFL Combine, only one has a first-round grade, and he chose not to participate in workouts. Offensive tackle Tyron Smith, who is projected as high as ninth overall on some draft boards, attended interview sessions in Indianapolis but scratched all drills while nursing an injured knee. Scouts waiting to get a good look at the prospect will now have to wait for USC’s pro-day to see his physical skills on display.
But there were others running, jumping, and lifting over the weekend, and these are some quick notes on their performances.
Allen Bradford took his 242 pound frame and carried it across a forty yard test track in an official time of 4.58. That’s impressive for a man of his size, an even more so, considering the 2009 Heisman Trophy winner, Mark Ingram, managed just a 4.62. Ingram is the top rated running back on draft boards, but Bradford has been climbing since late November. Bradford, the converted linebacker, also pushed out 28 reps of 225 pounds in the bench press, and added a 29 inch vertical leap to his resume.
Wide receiver Ronald Johnson posted a 40-time of 4.46, which he may choose to improve upon at pro-day workouts. The top rated pass catcher, Georgia’s A.J. Green, ran a disappointing 4.5, and is also likely to run again in Athens.
Kristofer O’Dowd, looking to standout among other centers in the class, helped himself in a number of drills. With critics questioning his strength, his 31 reps in the bench press was second among participating offensive linemen. He also recorded one of the better times in the 20-yard shuffle and posted a 40-time of 5.16. His 32.5 vertical also tied for this year’s best for offensive big men.
The Trojan that may have helped himself the most is Jordan Cameron. The tight end placed among the leaders in each drill, and came within two-hundredths of a second (4.03) from breaking the combine record for tight ends in the 20-yard shuffle (4.01). He entered as a virtual unknown outside the Southern California area, but his display of athleticism may have caught the eye of teams looking for an Aaron Hernandez type player at the position.
The event is still in progress, so more updates will come as the workouts progress.