I fall for the epic performances during "the COMBINE" every year. This year is no exception. We watch and get all worked up over drills that define athleticism and to a large part conditioning, but not necessarily football talent. Just about every potential NFL candidate at the annual event has worked out specifically for the testing that will take place at the Combine, and is ready for it.
This season we witnessed the largest overall group of pure speed displays that is now documented in combine history.
While superior athleticism is a good indication that an athlete has the potential to be a star, that inception doesn’t necessarily assure that the next step is NFL stardom. Tom Brady to this day is the poster child for that rationale.
Brady may be one of the poorest overall athletes in combine history. He proved he had absolutely no athletic prowess to boast of way back in the combine of 2000, and I mean just awful. Tom was clocked at 5.24 in the 40. Rich Eisen even now in 2019 would have been just a step behind Tom back in 2000! What’s even more hilarious is that Eisen a lot younger and possibly much more fit 19 years ago may have actually beaten Tom back in the year 2000.
How Obi Melifonwu from the season before last at the 2017 Combine? Wasn’t he impressive? Didn’t you, and just about every 49ers fan you know wonder what he would look like in the Niners red & gold? At least every other Niners fan was on that page.
While Melifonwu looked as if he had all the tools necessary to succeed, the name Taylor Mays kept being brought into the conversations.
Mays was also a tall freak at 6’3 who blazed down the track in a 4.43 that got everyone all worked up! The 49ers picked him up in the second round.
Melifonwu fooled the Raiders in the same fashion, having his name called out for their 2nd round pick in 2017. Obi ran a 4.40 flat in the Combine, recorded a 44inch vert, 141 inch broad jump, and 17 bench reps. Obi was going to be a terror right?
Wrong, the Raiders gave up on Melifonwu and waived him almost as soon as Gruden walked in. In fairness however Melifonwu underwent surgeries to both a knee and hip. It’s actually not known how good he may or may not be, but this is a prime example of why the Combine cannot be taken too seriously.
The irony of all these names being compared in contrast towards success versus failure, is that Obi Melifonwu who is currently on the Patriots roster, is wearing a Super Bowl ring that the same Tom Brady, who couldn’t come near to competing with Melifonwu in a Combine setting provided him with.
I say that, because if you think about past blistering performances in the Combine it may be best to keep as much perspective as possible in order to avoid dissapointments.
Still, right now with all we know on the matter, if I had it my way DK Metcalf would be in a 49ers uniform as of yesterday. His new locker in Santa Clara would be situated right next to Devin White out of LSU. Those two held a Combine clinic! Have I learned nothing? Absolutely not!
How about Montez Sweat? His stock is rolling sky high right now as well, and all the names that drew attention in the 2019 Combine will see a spike in their rankings to reflect the show they put on in this past weekend. It’s just tough not to get excited…