Day 2 of the 2022 NFL Scouting combine is in the books here are 3 takeaways from the second day of on-field workouts.
40 times (again)
Remember Thursday night at the scouting combine, when the receivers blew the roof off like they were on the racetrack?
It extended to Friday’s offensive line drills, when we saw a display of pure speed from Hog Mollies we’ve never seen before.
It’s as if monster trucks beat Dale Earnhardt Jr. by one-tenth of a second
There were six offensive linemen with official sub-5.0 40 times in the first group, and six in the second. The previous record was six, and there were 11 sub-4.5 40-yard dashes overall in the last three combines.
Rutgers’ Isiah Pacheco and South Dakota State’s Pierre Strong tied for the fastest running back at the 2022 combine with 40 times of 4.37 seconds.
Notre Dame’s Kyren Williams caught flak for his 4.7 40 yard dash time as many expected him to run faster.
However for RB’s there are more important factors and measurables at play than 40 times.
Zion Johnson’s Big Day
Zion Johnson played tackle and guard at Boston College, and then took reps at center during Senior Bowl week. Johnson has showcased his versatility and followed it up with a fantastic combine performance.
Few offensive linemen are as undersized like Johnson at 6-foot-3 and 312 pounds, but few had better combines than Johnson. He ran a 5.18 40-yard dash aced other drills, and looked very smooth and powerful on the field.
Johnson needed to show some athleticism to go with his play strength, and he took care of that admirably. He led all lineman with 32 bench press reps and showed off his movement in space with the wave drill.
The Boston College product was showing an ability to create power without planting during on-field drills.
Johnson is an easy mover, and you can see how he’s able to gain power and efficiency from that. He has separated himself as one of the top interior offensive linemen.
James is Cooking
In today’s league, top running backs threaten defenses on third down with their receiving skills, and NFL teams loved what they saw in James Cook on Friday.
Cook ran a 4.42 40 times and made seamless cuts with the ball in his hands during the on-field drills. He looked natural in space, secured all of his passes and caught the ball with his soft hands like a natural receiver.
At Georgia, Cook only logged 230 carries, so he doesn’t have mileage on him; however, he can project as a featured ball-carrier primed to log 15-plus carries a game.
Furthermore, Cook can become a matchup nightmare on crucial downs either in the slot or on short routes in the middle of the field.
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