NFL Combine 2014: Day 3 risers and fallers
The first day of on-field workouts at the 2014 NFL Combine (and the third day of the event) is in the books. Tight ends, offensive linemen and special teams got their moment in the spotlight Saturday, so let's see which players helped their cause and which ones didn't do so hot:
RISER: A.C. Leonard, TE, Tennessee State
Leonard had the fastest 40-yard dash time of any tight end, clocking a 4.50 and showing the overall athleticism that initially earned him a scholarship to Florida. He still needs to show that his off-field issues are a thing of the past, but he at least put his name on the radar as someone worth considering in the mid-to-late rounds.
FALLER: Cyrus Kouandjio, OT, Alabama
Things started off poorly and only got worse for Kouandjio. He ran a 5.59 40-yard dash -- slowest among lineman who participated in the drill -- and looked stiff at times during positional drills. However, the biggest blow came after Kouandjio finished all his workouts. NFL.com's Ian Rapoport reported that several teams had failed him on his physical because of an "arthritic knee from failed surgery." The report casts new doubt on whether Kouandjio is still worth a first-round pick.
RISER: Joel Bitonio, OT, Nevada
Bitonio showed remarkable athleticism (4.97 40-yard dash, 4.44 20-yard shuttle, 7.37 three-cone drill, 114-inch broad jump) for a 6-4, 302-pounder. He solidified his status as a Day 2 pick (second or third round).
FALLER: Austin Seferian-Jenkins, TE, Washington
Seferian-Jenkins had hoped to vault into the draft's upper tier of tight ends, but reportedly was told before Saturday's workout that the NFL had not cleared him to participate due to a pre-existing foot condition. It remains to be seen whether it will affect his ability to compete at Washington's Pro Day on April 2.
RISERS: The top three offensive linemen (Jake Matthews, Texas A&M; Greg Robinson, Auburn; Taylor Lewan, Michigan)
The trio of tackles showed on Saturday why they're considered the best linemen of the bunch. Matthews looked very smooth in positional drills, while Robinson and Lewan wowed with their exceptional athleticism. After Saturday, it's not unreasonable to see all three as potential top-10 picks.
FALLER: Richard Rodgers, TE, Cal
Rodgers on Saturday didn't have the athleticism that he showed on tape. His 4.87 40-yard dash was fourth-slowest among tight ends that ran on Saturday, and he only put up 16 reps on the bench press. Detractors will point to these numbers as proof that he's not NFL-ready, while supporters will point to his game film, where he showed the kind of athleticism that would make him a good fit for today's tight end role.