Insider Access: QB and WR Workouts

WR Mardy Gilyard (AP: Darron Cummings)

As a member of the Professional Football Writers of America, I was fortunate enough to witness the Scouting Combine workout for each group of QBs and WRs. Here's what I saw in Indianapolis. ...

GROUP 1

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Following a strong performance at the Senior Bowl, West Virginia QB Jarrett Brown continued to impress onlookers with his sound footwork, quick delivery and reliable accuracy. Considered maybe a fifth- or sixth-round pick by most scouts, Northwestern QB Mike Kafka was somewhat surprisingly the second-best passer of his group and definitely helped himself.

Running the gauntlet drill from sideline to sideline, Clemson WR Jacoby Ford not only showed off his trademark speed, but he caught all 14 combined passes on his two tries and looked awfully smooth doing it. Kansas WR Dez Briscoe appeared to be the best route runner of his group, getting in and out of his breaks quickly and showing strong hands from start to finish.

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Despite sitting one spot ahead of Kafka on Scout.com's rankings, Oregon State QB Sean Canfield has to be tumbling down many draft boards following a disappointing performance that included few highlights. Reports from the East-West Shrine Game weren't kind to Penn State QB Daryll Clark, and he did nothing to reverse the trend because he was just as inaccurate on shorter throws as he was on longer throws.

Considered a late first- or early second-round prospect, Cincinnati WR Mardy Gilyard gave the impression he had never run a route before and was sloppy on the slant, out, in and post-corner. While Florida WR Riley Cooper started off strong and reeled in everything thrown his way in the gauntlet, he dropped one pass that hit him right in the chest on a come-back and then juggled his second attempt on a post-corner.

GROUP 2

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Although he was branded a spread-option passer because of the offense he played in, Oklahoma State QB Zac Robinson showed off a picture-perfect vertical delivery and has plenty of arm to make every NFL throw. Coming off a disappointing junior season, Mississippi QB Jevan Snead proved his decision to enter the draft early was justified because he threw the deep ball better than any signal caller in the group.

Not only is Louisville WR Scott Long one of the sturdier pass catchers in the draft at 6-2 and 215 pounds, but he ran crisp routes and did a good job of receiving the ball away from his body. A small-school prospect that elevated his stock in Indianapolis, Ohio WR Taylor Price never let the pigskin hit the Lucas Oil Stadium turf despite having few big-name quarterbacks throwing to him.

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He may be blessed with all the physical tools and looks like a monster out there at 6-5 and 256 pounds, but Fordham QB John Skelton was wildly inaccurate all day long and single-handedly destroyed the gauntlet drill with throws both high and wide. Never considered anything more than a late-round flyer, Wake Forest QB Riley Skinner is not an NFL-quality passer and would be lucky to sign on as an undrafted free agent.

Yet another Bayou Bengal pass catcher expected to come off the board in Round 1, LSU WR Brandon LaFell did nothing to distinguish himself, including a few dropped balls through the gauntlet and some slips running routes. One of the four Williams brothers in Group 2, Syracuse WR Mike Williams looks good in his Under Armour at 6-2 and 204 pounds, but he noticeably struggled in each and every drill.


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John Crist is the Publisher of Bear Report and a member of the Professional Football Writers of America. To read him every day, visit BearReport.com and become a Chicago Bears insider.

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