Combine 101

Let’s talk about the combine!

The purpose of the combine is an opportunity for each NFL team to see the incoming players and their potential. These coaches do not want to go into the draft blind. It would be like going to the mall, pulling clothes off of the rack, and buying them without trying them on. Only to get home and find they aren’t a good fit. Each coach has a game plan and each game plan is different. Some coaches focus more on the running game while others more on passing. Some coaches are more defense minded while others are more offense minded. So you see the combine is a perfect chance for each coach to scout and see who would fit in best with their plans.

The only way a player can attend the combine is to be invited there. There aren’t any walk ons. 335 players were invited to this years combine. The combine is important to a player because it will affect where they go in the draft and ultimately their salary. There are a number of tests done at the combine to measure a prospective player’s potential and skills. Some of the tests are self-explanatory while others are puzzling, but no worries I’ll explain them! These tests include (there are a lot more than I thought there would be):

  •  40-yard dash – used to evaluate the speed of a prospect
  •  Bench press (225 lb repetitions) – evaluates upper body strength
  •  Vertical jump
  •  Broad jump – basically a standing long jump. Evaluates lower body strength
  •  20 yard shuttle – evaluates the quickness and the ability to change directions quickly
  •  3 cone drill – evaluates the agility, quickness, and fluidity of a player
  •  60-yard shuttle
  •  Position-specific drills
  •  Interviews — each team is allowed 60 interviews in 15-minute intervals
  •  Physical measurements
  •  Injury evaluation
  •  Drug screen
  •  The Cybex test – tests the joint movement of each draft prospect
  •   The Wonderlic Test – is an intelligence test of sorts. It is used to evaluate learning and problem solving. 50 is a perfect score while a score of 20 indicates average intelligence. The average NFL player scores a 20. Interestingly enough the offensive tackle, center, and QB score the highest of any position in the NFL.

The players actually arrived at the combine yesterday for interviews, medical exams, and measurements but the schedule for the actual workouts is as follows:

February 22nd – Placekickers, special teams, offensive linemen, tight ends

February 23rd – Quarterbacks, wide receivers, running backs

February 24th – Defensive linemen, linebackers

February 25th – Defensive backs

You can watch live coverage of the combine workouts on NFL Network  at 9 a.m. ET each day starting Saturday, but if you’re a complete junky like me and want to watch them hash out each player and hear the endless talk that will go on, you can catch that starting today at 2 pm ET.

There you have it ladies. A short snippet on the combine and why it’s so important, you can find the full invite list here NFL Combine Invite List.

Questions or comments about the combine? Would you like to tell me about the player your most excited to see perform at the combine? Then tweet me @PatsFanGirl12. I’d love to hear from you!

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