Florida State Football: Combine Grades, Analysis and Results for Former Noles
Last year, Florida State had the most players who were drafted into the NFL with 11. This year, the Seminoles look to do the same, starting off with the NFL combine. Hopefuls, which include former standouts like Lamarcus Joyner and Telvin Smith, tested and worked out for scouts with intentions of securing themselves a pro career.
Overall, the Seminoles had nine players in the combine, and eight participated, with Bryan Stork only showing up to weigh in and get measurements. Some struggled, while others might have improved their position in the draft.
Here are grades, analysis and results for the former Seminoles who took part in the combine.
Note: Combine results are courtesy of NFL.com.
If one player improved his draft stock drastically over the season, it would be Benjamin, who emerged as a freak of nature for the Seminoles and eventually the hero in the national championship game over Auburn.
Though he's still has more to learn about the game, there might not be a better pass-catching option than the giant 6'5" receiver. He put up 13 reps on the bench press and had a 4.61 40-yard dash, 12.08 60-yard shuttle, 4.39 20-yard shuttle and 7.33 three-cone drill.
All signs point to him being taken in the middle of the first or in the early second round.
Brooks finds himself in the precarious position of trying to boost his stock. He's done everything he could to make that happen, and with his combine performance, he could climb up the boards of some teams.
He ran extremely fast times for a safety, running unofficial 40 times of 4.41 and 4.43, with an official time of 4.42. At 198 pounds, he could stand to add a few more pounds, but the combine did its part in helping his draftability.
Freeman needed a strong showing at the combine, and he did his part in making that happen. At 5'8", he's small, but at 208 pounds, he has a lot of power behind him.
His 40-yard dash time of 4.52 was expected, as he typically has a great initial burst but falters after a bit. The time should help increase his visibility in the coming weeks. Other workouts included his 31.5" vertical jump and 118" broad jump, along with a 4.26 20-yard shuttle and 7.11 three-cone drill.
Combined with a strong pro day, Freeman should hear his name announced during the draft.
A player who has been mentioned as a potential first-rounder, Jernigan impressed many during his workout, including former Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Miami Hurricanes star Warren Sapp, who lavished the defensive lineman with praise throughout the broadcast of the combine.
Jernigan put up 27 reps on the bench press and ran a 5.09 official 40, with a 4.93 unofficial time. Both are good numbers for defensive linemen and suggest that he may hear his name earlier rather than later during the draft.
Christian Jones started the year off as a linebacker and eventually eased his way into a defensive end position. His size (6'3", 240 pounds) and experience make him an ideal prospect, and he has the skill to be a contributor in the NFL.
He had a good showing at the combine but didn't deliver anything that will cause him to shoot up boards. He ran a 4.72 40-yard dash and notched a 33.5" vertical jump and 115" broad jump.
He still is in position to find an NFL team, but a strong pro day could help his case more.
Joyner chose to stay at Florida State for his senior year instead of leaving for the NFL early, and in return he received a national championship ring. A finalist for the Thorpe Award, he was one of the top defensive backs in the country.
He ran a surprisingly slow 40-yard dash, clocking in at 4.55, which was nowhere near indicative of his speed on the field. His 37.5" vertical jump and 14 bench-press reps, however, did their part in illustrating what a team could be getting in a player like Joyner.
The slow 40 shouldn't affect his stock too much; however, if he runs faster at his pro day, it wouldn't hurt.
Smith stole the show during his workout, making himself look smart for saying that he wanted to remain at linebacker in the NFL. He ran the second-fastest 40-yard of the linebackers at 4.52, which was .01 seconds slower than the fastest time. His unofficial time was 4.51, which showed that he possesses his own version of fast.
At 6'3", he has the size to be a great player in the NFL; it's just a matter of putting on more weight. At 218 pounds, he could be better suited as a safety. With his performance, he convinced some people otherwise.
James Wilder Jr.
If the NFL draft was based on physical traits, Wilder Jr. would have a legitimate argument for No. 1 overall. Coming in 6'3", 232 pounds, with 32" arms and 9.75" hands, he was the most physically impressive running back to show up.
However, he ran a subpar 40-yard dash, clocking in at 4.86. He has never been a speedster, but the number still sticks with scouts. Pro day will be his chance to redeem himself on that aspect, which is fixable with proper coaching.
He did 18 reps on the bench press and had a vertical of 35" and a broad jump of 121", which are good marks. If he can impress at his pro day, he can earn back some of the money he lost with his showing, but he still has a good chance of being drafted.
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