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Scouting Combine Winners: 10 Players that Improved their Draft Stock

It’s dangerous to put too much stock in combine workouts.

The 40-yard dash may measure straight-line speed but it won’t tell you if a running back has great vision or instincts. The bench press might be a good indication of how strong a player is, but people with long arms tend to struggle with the exercise and isn’t having long arms one of the qualities that scouts look for in an offensive tackle prospect?

That said: Forget what I just wrote. The combine numbers mean everything, which makes this post so worth your time. Listen to me, I’m not one of those idiots who sets up an article by telling you how combine numbers mean nothing and then compiles a list of prospects that improved their draft stocks based off their combine numbers. That would just be foolish and counterproductive.

Below are 10 prospects that may have improved their draft stock with their performance at the combine this week. I know there were more than just 10, so feel free to share whom you thought raised their stock in the comments section below (which is way more productive than calling me a flippin’ moron for not listing a player, and then smugly asking, “Did you even watch football last year?” which is one of my all-time favorite comments from readers).

Von Miller, OLB, Texas A&M
I’d be shocked if Miller weren’t selected in the top 6 after running a 4.53 forty at the combine. He was unofficially clocked at 4.46 and I don’t see him getting past Cleveland at No. 6. (I actually think he won’t get past Arizona at No. 5, but if the Cardinals take a quarterback I could see the Browns nabbing him at No. 6.) Miller put on nearly 10 pounds since the Senior Bowl and is already drawing comparisons to DeMarcus Ware. He’s the most NFL-ready pass rusher in the draft.

Christian Ponder, QB, Florida State
Everybody is loving themselves some Christian Ponder right now. After displaying great accuracy and decent arm strength over the weekend, some believe Ponder may now go in the first round. I think that’s a stretch but I wouldn’t be shocked if he went to the Bengals at the top of the second round. He’s viewed as the best West Coast Offense quarterback in the draft and may have been the signal caller that improved his draft stock the most this week.

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Follow the Scores Report editors on Twitter @TheScoresReport. You can also follow TSR editor Gerardo Orlando @clevelandteams and @bullzeyedotcom, and you can follow TSR editor Anthony Stalter @AnthonyStalter.

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Rodgers brothers, Brian Kelly’s debut among five things to watch for on opening weekend

Dec 22, 2009; Las Vegas, NV, USA; Oregon State Beavers running back Jacquizz Rodgers (1) heads up field against the BYU Cougars in the 2009 Las Vegas Bowl at Sam Boyd Stadium. BYU defeated Oregon State 44-20. Photo via Newscom

I’m assuming you’re excited today.

I know I am. As nice as Thursday was for college football lovers, there’s nothing quite like the first full Saturday of college football. I could barely sleep last night, as thoughts of TCU’s defense, Brian Kelly’s debut in South Bend and Erin Andrews — on the set of Gameday … pervs — danced through my head.

Before I get into the five things you should look out for today, a brief introduction: My name is Paul Costanzo and I’ll be guiding you through your college football Saturdays this season. I’m not a college football expert, by any means. I’m just a huge fan who happens to have a journalism degree. I’m also a good friend of Anthony’s, so if I suck at this, you can direct all your hate mail to him. You can read me daily in the Times Herald newspaper out of Port Huron, Mich.

But enough about me, let’s get to the games. Read the rest of this entry »

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