The NFL Scouting Combine is underway in Indianapolis, and the stocks are rising and falling. Here are some of the winners from the first day at the combine at quarterback, receiver, and tight end.
QB Malik Willis- Liberty
Willis has generated buzz of late, receiving stock ascension reminiscent of Patrick Mahomes coming out of Texas Tech. Willis was cool, calm, and collected on short and intermediate throws with touch and accuracy overall — and he can really sling a deep ball and land it on the money. As far as arm talent is concerned, Willis had the best day at the combine.
An absolute BEAUTY of a throw from @LibertyFootball— NFL (@NFL) March 4, 2022
: #NFLCombine on @nflnetwork pic.twitter.com/nBtecvoB2I
Willis is just 6-foot tall, something that some scouts are concerned with, he did throw his fair share of interceptions at Liberty (27 TD, 12 INT), but his upside is evident. Willis does some Russel Wilson-esque things as a scrambler (878 rushing yards, 13 TD in 2021) and may be the most intriguing quarterback in the draft in terms of raw talent.
TE Jelani Woods- Virginia
Woods is 6-foot-7 and has a tremendous balance of size, speed, and strength. Woods led all tight ends in the bench press with 24 reps, ran a 4.61 40-yard dash, and impressed in drills.
Jelani Woods has been impressive thus far. Smooth feet, long strider with sticky hands. Excellent rep here. pic.twitter.com/QxbNyfjcYJ— Ryan Fowler (@_RyanFowler_) March 3, 2022
Woods transferred from Oklahoma State to Virginia in 2021, and the decision paid major dividends. Woods had his best collegiate season in ‘21, hauling in 44 receptions for 598 yards and 8 touchdowns.
With these measurables and a standout performance at the combine, it would be absolutely criminal if this man wasn’t drafted in the second round.
WR Christian Watson- North Dakota State
The 6-foot-4, 208 pound wideout ran a 4.36 40-yard dash and the best broad jump for a WR at 11’4” (the 7th longest since 1999). Watson had 43 receptions last season for 800 yards (a staggering 18.6 yards per reception) with 7 touchdowns. Don’t be surprised if Watson winds up being a first round selection.
Christian Watson without a doubt is the biggest winner of the day pic.twitter.com/8KWZQwrviM— Joe DeLeone (@joedeleone) March 4, 2022
WR Chris Olave- Ohio State
Olave ran an unofficial 4.26 40-yard dash, which would have been good for third best all-time. However, once the official time came in it was a 4.39. Even so, Olave impressed in drills, was flying down the field during the deep ball portion of the combine, and cemented himself as one of the fastest receivers in the draft class.
4.26u, holy moly.@OhioStateFB WR @chrisolave_ with a jaw-dropping 40.— NFL (@NFL) March 4, 2022
: #NFLCombine on @nflnetwork pic.twitter.com/xKZxr9Cd78
TE Greg Dulcich- UCLA
Dulcich, 6-foot-4, ran a 4.69 40-yard dash with the second best broad jump for a TE at 10’2”. Where Dulcich excelled was in the drill portion, where he showed how smooth of a route runner he is, arguably the best in the class. Dulcich had 42 receptions for 725 yards and 5 touchdowns in 2021. Dulcich is dangerous in the open field, has plus-speed on deep balls, and could be an absolute steal in the third round.
"That's the best rep of the gauntlet thus far." - @MoveTheSticks @UCLAFootball TE @Greg_Dulcich is stealing the show out here.— NFL (@NFL) March 3, 2022
: #NFLCombine on @nflnetwork pic.twitter.com/W89puG5ELj
QB Carson Strong- Nevada
Strong may have the strongest arm in the draft, and that was on full display at the combine. Not only can Strong sling it, he throws with accuracy and doesn’t throw many interceptions. Strong had a 70% completion percentage with 63 touchdowns and 12 touchdowns the past two years at Nevada.
I’m addicted to Carson Strong deep balls.— Grayson Weir (@GsonJW) March 4, 2022
Please help. pic.twitter.com/jUEtmVSJbE