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March 2, 2010 @ 9:25 am
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Combine Coverage: Tuesday

Written by Jim
Jim Flynn


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Which players impressed at the NFL Scouting Combine on Tuesday with the cornerbacks and safeties working out on the final day in Indianapolis? Which players disappointed in workouts? Read PewterReport.com's analysis of the draft prospects in this article.
The final day of the 2010 NFL Combine took place Tuesday in Indianapolis. The cornerbacks and safeties were the final players to work out in front of NFL coaches, scouts and front office executives. PewterReport.com highlights the impressive and disappointing performers. NFL Network provided the stats regarding the pro prospects.


USC S Taylor Mays (6-3, 230)
Talk about saving the best for last. He wasn't the best safety in college football last year, but Mays was the best defensive back at the NFL Combine Tuesday in terms of the on-field workouts. Mays looks the part of a freak of nature, and on Tuesday he played the part of one, excelling in every drill. In addition to posting 24 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press and a 41-inch vertical, Mays opened eyes by running the best 40-yard dash time of any defensive back with a 4.43, which is very impressive for a 230-pound safety. In addition to posting a 10'5" broad jump, Mays also fared well during on-field drills with change-of-direction skills. He didn't look as stiff in the hips as he did at times in college. Mays' athleticism and showing at the combine will bring him up draft boards, but there still is cause for concern regarding his instincts and nose for the football. Mays had just five interceptions at USC, and three of those came in his freshman year.

Tennessee S Eric Berry (6-0, 211)
Berry is considered the best safety in the 2010 NFL Draft, and he solidified his status in Indy on Tuesday. Berry ran an impressive 4.47 time in the 40-yard dash. He also had 19 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press, and posted a 10'10" broad jump and a 43-inch vertical jump, which was in the top three of any defensive back at the combine. Berry, who had 14 interceptions, three touchdowns and three sacks at Tennessee, will be a player the Tampa Bay Buccaneers consider taking with the third overall pick in the 2010 NFL Draft.

Texas S Earl Thomas (5-10, 208)
Thomas really excelled in the on-the-field drills at times with his ability to redirect and locate the football. He also posted good numbers, running the 40-yard dash in 4.47 seconds and bench pressing 225 pounds a total of 21 times. Thomas' performance at the combine likely will help his stock after his impressive collegiate career at Texas, where he notched 10 interceptions.

Wake Forest CB Brandon Ghee (6-0, 192)
Ghee really opened some eyes at the Senior Bowl, and he continued to impress at the combine on Tuesday. Ghee ran the second-fastest 40-yard dash time (4.45) of any of the defensive backs and led all cornerbacks in that category. He also had a 10'7" broad jump and 15 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press. By comparison, Boise State CB Kyle Wilson led all cornerbacks with 25 reps of 225 and Kansas State CB Joshua Moore was the lowest with just two reps of 225. Ghee had just one interception at Wake Forest, but he's considered an intriguing prospect in the 2010 NFL Draft. His offseason has arguably been more impressive than his collegiate career.

Virginia CB Chris Cook (6-2, 212)
Like Ghee, Cook turned in a very good Senior Bowl and helped his stock even more at the combine on Tuesday. Cook posted the best broad jump (11'0") of any player at this year's combine. He also ran the 40-yard dash in 4.46 seconds and had seven reps of 225 pounds on the bench press. Cook and Ghee showed good footwork in the on-the-field drills as well. Cook could be selected ahead of Ghee just because he was more productive at the college level, notching seven interceptions and scoring two touchdowns for Virginia.

Kansas S Darrell Stuckey (5-11, 208)
Stucky is a player that helped himself at the East-West Shrine Game, particularly during the week of practice leading up to the college all-star contest. He helped himself in Indy with his 40-yard dash time (4.49), bench press (17 reps of 225) and vertical jump (39'5"). Stuckey, who had eight interceptions in college, is a player on Tampa Bay's radar. Not only did Bucs general manager Mark Dominik graduate from Kansas, former first-round pick, cornerback Aqib Talib, played with the Jayhawks as well. If the Bucs elect not to draft a safety early in April, Stuckey is a player the Bucs could target after the first few rounds.  

Fresno State CB A.J. Jefferson (6-0, 193)
Very few people had heard of Jefferson before the combine, but plenty left Indy Tuesday knowing who he was and what he is about from an athletic standpoint. Jefferson didn't have any sacks or interceptions in four seasons at Fresno State, but he helped his draft stock tremendously by excelling in drills at the combine. Jefferson posted this year's best vertical leap (44 inches) and ran the 40-yard dash in 4.43 seconds. He also had seven reps of 225 pounds on the bench press and a 10'6" broad jump. During on-the-field drills, Jefferson showed good footwork. Although his instincts and ball skills are in question, Jefferson is a player that will be worth investing a late draft pick on come April.


Florida CB Joe Haden (5-11, 193)
Believed to be the top cornerback in the 2010 NFL Draft heading into the combine, Haden hurt his stock quite a bit Tuesday with 4.57 and 4.60 times in the 40-yard dash, which was much slower than anyone anticipated and will cause teams to go back and look at film. Haden, who had eight interceptions and three sacks at Florida, recovered a bit by posting 18 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press and a 10'5" broad jump, but his 40 time is a major red flag.

Florida State S Myron Rolle (6-2, 215)
Rolle is a popular prospect because he elected to skip the 2009 season at Florida State to attend Oxford in England as a Rhodes Scholar. His commitment to football has come into question, and as has his ability to play the safety position in the NFL after Tuesday's combine workout. Rolle did well on the bench press, lifting 225 pounds a total of 21 times, but he bombed in the 40-yard dash, running a 4.69, which was the second-slowest time in front of only Ole Miss S Kendrick Lewis, who ran a 4.72. That time, along with the fact that Rolle notched just one interception at FSU, could cause him to fall in April's draft.

Alabama CB Javier Arenas (5-9, 197)
His workout wasn't necessarily disappointing as his 4.52 time in the 40-yard dash wasn't great or terrible. He wasn't a prospect known for blazing speed heading into the combine. However, what was disappointing about Arenas' workout was how long it lasted. Unfortunately, Arenas, who had six interceptions and seven sacks while making a name for himself as a dangerous return specialist at Alabama, tweaked his hamstring after running the 40-yard dash, which prompted him to skip the remaining drills at the NFL Combine. That could hurt Arenas' stock a bit in the draft, where he was projected to be a second- or third-round pick.


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