The DA Draft Buzz: February 16th
Tony PaulineDraft Analyst Writer
Here’s the latest news from the west coast, including some exceptionally fast times being run by combine invitees.
Throughout the Senior Bowl, we commented on the superior athleticism displayed by Tarell Basham. The Ohio product is evidently continuing to impress people during combine training, as I’m told he’s running the 40 in the 4.6s after weighing 275 pounds.
The 275 pounds is 16 more than he weighed at the Senior Bowl, when Basham tipped the scales at 259 pounds. Another interesting note is that Basham spent Senior Bowl practices at outside linebacker but will be working out with the defensive linemen during the combine. Basham lined up at defensive end in college.
I’m sure he has been pegged for alternate position drills at the combine and will participate in linebacker drills once the defensive linemen complete their workout.
Formerly retired Utah running back Joe Williams, who’s also on the combine invite list, has been running some incredibly fast times during training. I’m told the stopwatch has been reading in the low 4.3s and, in some instances, the 4.2s for Williams.
During our coverage of Shrine Game practices, I complimented Williams on his speed every day.
Two additional Pac-12 players who have looked very quick in training are Stanford receiver Michael Rector and Washington State safety Shalom Luani. Both were invited to the combine.
Finally, who are the players scouts feel will leave the combine with improved draft stock?
Three Pac-12 players receiving rave reviews are Colorado corner Chidobe Awuzie, Utah tackle Garett Bolles and USC cornerback Adoree' Jackson.
I’ve mentioned Awuzie several times since December, reporting on February 3 that teams love his versatility and believe he can play cornerback or safety.
We’ve reported on Bolles numerous times as well and mentioned scouts have pegged him as the superior athlete in this year’s tackle class.
Which player could fall as a result of the combine?
The overwhelming belief is DeMarcus Walker of Florida State will leave Indianapolis with depressed draft stock, an opinion I completely agree with.
It’s a combination of a lack of size, poor speed and a question as to where he’ll line up on Sundays. I’m also told there are a few character issues with Walker.