OU leads all Big 12 schools with six participants in Indianapolis
The University of Oklahoma will have six players represented in the 2013 NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. NFL teams began interviewing players on Wednesday, but the action will begin in earnest on Saturday when tight ends, offensive line and specialists begin their workouts at Lucas Oil Stadium.
Sooners participating include safety Tony Jefferson, offensive tackle Lane Johnson, quarterback Landry Jones, defensive lineman Stacy McGee, wide receiver Kenny Stills and linebacker Tom Wort.
The Sooners lead all Big 12 schools with six players selected for the NFL Scouting Combine. Kansas State (five) was the only other squad with more than three former players currently invited. In total, 29 Big 12 players have received invitations, meaning 20.7 percent of the conference players represented in Indianapolis will be from the University of Oklahoma.
Below is a day-by-day breakdown of the position workouts, as well as analysis courtesy of NFL.com.
*Results will be posted as they come available with where they ranked among their position groups in parenthesis.
Uses his athleticism well, displaying good foot quickness to mirror pass rushers off the edge to deny them the corner and adjust to their inside moves. Easily reaches second-level targets when pulled outside or stepping up in the box, and sustains the block. Generally plays with good pad level and balance despite his height, and can fire out from a three-point stance and generate a bit of push on run plays. Johnson's feet keep moving through initial contact, allowing him to get into the correct blocking angle while engaged. He also uses his hands and length well to maintain distance with the defender. NFL coaches will like that he plays with an attitude, as he looks willing to hand-fight with defensive ends, usually landing multiple strong punches, and will consistently finish blocks with a strong arm extension.
Johnson was a high school quarterback and a backup at his junior college at that position for one season before moving to tight end, defensive end and then finally right tackle during his first three seasons with the Sooners. He finally got his shot on the left side in 2012 and was as reliable as ever. Scouts saw the potential in Johnson grow throughout the 2011 and 2012 seasons due to his athleticism, strength, and solid technique despite his lack of experience. Expect his name to be mentioned frequently throughout the process.
Prototypical pocket passer with NFL size. Extremely productive. Can stretch the field with his arm and shows good zip on passes to all parts of the field when his feet are set. Quick release makes him very effective in the short to intermediate passing game. Challenging throws in every start, whether threading the ball versus cover-two or connecting on a back-shoulder pattern.
The NFL-sized pocket passer can be decisive and flashes the accuracy to pick apart defenses at the next level. However, his tendency to get rattled under pressure is a major issue. Also, when things start to go downhill, he lacks a short memory; his confidence is shaken. He is also inconsistent in his reads and decision making.
Good athlete. Good first step off of the line of scrimmage well and has the speed to get behind cornerbacks and the quickness to create separation out of his breaks. Tracks the deep ball very well. Good hands. Flexible, and can make the adjustment to reel in off-target throws. Shows body control and the ability to catch the football at the high point.
While Stills isn't the biggest or the fastest, he has a knack for finding ways to get open. He has the ability to track the football, and make some extremely difficult catches. Stills will likely be selected around the third round.
Athletic build and good foot speed for a penetrating three-technique tackle or five-technique end. Gets upfield with a long and quick first step when attacking a gap. Chases ballcarriers towards the sideline and downfield to help out teammates if needed, as well as keep his feet while engaged to work down the line on run plays. Flashes the ability to keep his eyes in the backfield and shed to grab running backs coming through the hole.
McGee has all the physical attributes to be a contributor as a 4-3 defensive tackle or 3-4 defensive end. However, between a lack of production throughout his career, multiple off the field incidents, and suspensions, he is unlikely to be drafted.
Instinctive. Reads keys well, and times up his blitzes very well. Fast in short areas, closes well. Shows decent range. Aggressive player. Physical tackler. Looks comfortable in zone coverage. Gets proper depth on his drops.
Wort had his best season in 2011, where he earned an honorable mention on the All-Big 12 team. Wort recorded 71 tackles (4.5 for loss), 3.5 sacks, two interceptions, and two pass breakups. In 2012, he recorded 53 tackles (5.5 for loss), two sacks, and one pass breakup. Wort had a successful college career, but appears to lack the same tools to succeed in the NFL. He's a bit of a 'tweener in the NFL. He will have to prove he can contribute on special teams in order to earn a roster spot.
Athletic, tough-minded safety. Plays all over the field, in a stack, on slot receivers, and single-high. Can lay the wood. Explosive blitzer who times his start well and brings pop as a tackler. Discards poor blocking attempts by fullbacks and receivers with hands and tenacity to make a play on the ball. Maintains outside leverage when playing containment responsibilities to force run plays inside. Good ball skills, follows receivers' eyes in man or keeps his in the backfield in zone to break on passes. Flashes the hands to make the one-handed grab and is competitive in 50/50 and jump ball situations. Covers running backs on wheel routes adeptly, and can take away safety valve routes from slot receivers. Should be a special teams force early in his career due to his aggressive nature, speed, and tackling ability. Infectious attitude that helps him be a team leader.
In his junior season, Jefferson recorded 119 tackles, two interceptions, and three passes defended. He was named a second-team AP All-American for his efforts. Though shorter than most top safety prospects, Jefferson's leadership skills, physicality around the line of scrimmage and his coverage skills will entice teams to pick him early in the 2013 draft.
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