Tuesday; January 21, 2020 … If there was a surprise at this morning’s weigh-in and measurement session at the Senior Bowl in Mobile it may be that there really weren’t all that many surprises. The QBs, for example, turned up pretty much as advertised. Oregon’s Justin Herbert, who figures to be the most scrutinized player in Mobile this week, in particular measured in at 6-6, 227 with good sized 10″ hands. Utah State’s Jordan Love also passed the eyeball with flying colors as he measured in at 6-3.5 and 223 pounds with the huge (10.5″) hands that the pros like their QBs to have. Meanwhile, Jalen Hurts of Oklahoma measured in at just 6-1, an inch shorter than his listed height, but he’s solid enough at almost 220 pounds. Of course, it wasn’t all that long ago that 6-1 for a QB would have been a virtual deal breaker, but those days appear to have long. Michigan’s Shea Patterson also measured in at just 6-1, but it will be more problematic for his as he also only weighed 204, plus he has relatively small hands for a QB at just a tad over 9″.
The consensus around the NFL is that wide receiver and offensive tackle may be the two strongest positions overall at the 2020 and that showed to a degree at today’s weight-in. Certainly, teams looking for a big, physical receiver in the mode of record-breaking New Orleans WR Michael Thomas, should have plenty to choose from in this year’s draft class including guys like USC’s Michael Pittman (6-3.7, 220), Collin Johnson of Texas (6.5.5, 221), Tennessee’s Juaun Jennings (6-3, 206), Chase Claypool of Notre Dame (6-4.5, 230), Baylor’s Denzel Mims (6-2.6, 206) and small-school star Antonio Gandy-Golden of Liberty (6-3.5, 222). All also had pretty good wingspans in the 33″ range, although none had particularly big mitts with all in the 9-9.5 inch range.
There was also some impressive size among the offensive linemen at this morning’s weigh-in, although the most impressive guys, at least in shorts, weren’t necessarily the biggest names. Texas A&M OT Terence Steele, for example, measured in at just over 6-6 and 312 pounds with long arms (36″) to compliment his length. At the same time, Uconn’s Matt Peart tipped the scales at 6-6.5 and 310 pounds with a 35″ reach, while unheralded Alex Taylor of FCS South Carolina State tipped the scales at over 6-8 and 308 pounds with a huge 36″- plus wingspan. At the same time, NFL types had to be a little disappointed that both of OTs Prince Tega Wanogho of Auburn and Kentucky’s Logan Stenberg only have 33″ which is a little less than ideal for a pro OT. Same story for Houston’s Josh Jones, who measured in at 6-5, a full two inches shorter than his program height, and with only 33.5″ arms, although he did show big hands at 10″. At the same time, a couple of other offensive linemen stood out in shorts including Clemson OG John Simpson, who measured in at a robust 6-4.5, 330 with a 34″ reach and huge 11″ hands. Arguably, the most impressive physical specimen among the big uglies, though, may have been rising LSU C Lloyd Cushenberry who tipped the scales at 6-3, 312 with 34.5 arms and 10.5″ hands.
If there was a disappointment at this morning’s weigh-in it was perhaps that a number of pass rushing DE/LB types didn’t have the length that NFL teams like in their edge rushers. Neither of DEs Brad Anae of Utah nor Syracuse’s Alton Robinson had arms much over 32″. Same for Wisconsin LB Zack Baun, while Michigan State DE Kenny Willekes was barely over 31″. However, several other edge rushers did more than just pass the old eyeball test. Alabama OLB Terrell Lewis, for example, impressed as he measured in at 6-5, 260 with 34-plus inch arms and 10-inch hands. Same for Florida DE Jon Greenard who tipped the scales at 6-3.5, 262 with 34.5″ arms, while underrated South Carolina OLB D.J. Wonnum also impressed when he measured in at 6-5, 260 with 34″ arms and 10.5″ hands. Meanwhile, Penn State OLB Cam Brown was a little light in the caboose at just 232 pounds, but he did show impressive length at 6-5.5 with a 34″ reach.
Lastly, one could make the case that two of the biggest winners today were DTs Javon Kinlaw of South Carolina and Utah’s Leki Fotu. Kinlaw, who was already being whispered about as a potential top 10-15 pick this coming draft, did absolutely nothing to hurt hsi grade when he measured in at 6-5, 315 with 34.5-inch arms and 10-plus inch hands. Meanwhile, Fotu, who may or may not participate in drills this week because of an injury looked immense as he tipped the scales at 6-5.5, 337 with 34″ arms and 10″ hands.