Ten players with much at stake at NFL Scouting Combine
Annual chase begins for the best available athletes for the 2012 NFL Draft
02/21/2012 11:00 PM
02/22/2012 9:04 AM
Scouts will watch 317 prospects this week at the NFL Scouting Combine. All, including probable No. 1 pick Andrew Luck, have something to gain -- or lose -- based on how they do in Indianapolis. But some players have more at stake than others. Here are 10 to keep an eye on this week:
DT Michael Brockers (LSU) He was dominant last year, with 47 tackles, but that was only his second year to play and his first year as a full-time starter. With 14 career starts, Brockers doesn't have much experience.
LB Zach Brown (North Carolina) He is rated a second-rounder, but he has a chance to have the most impressive combine of any player. Brown is a sprinter on the North Carolina track team who set the school record in the indoor 60-meter dash with a 6.72. Scouts say he is a "fluidly gifted athlete."
LB Vontaze Burfict (Arizona State) Burfict, who made 228 tackles in three years, has earned comparisons to Ray Lewis. But he needs to do damage control on his lack of discipline, which has led to too many personal foul penalties. His answers to questions about his emotional outbursts are crucial.
CB Alfonzo Dennard (Nebraska) His draft stock was hurt with a disappointing week at the Senior Bowl. Dennard needs to show at the combine that he has the speed and the transition skills to be a first-round pick.
FB Bradie Ewing (Wisconsin) He has been compared to Giants fullback Henry Hynoski, but Ewing has to prove he can catch the ball. He had only 28 receptions for 328 yards and two touchdowns in four years at Wisconsin.
CB Jamell Fleming (Oklahoma) The Arlington Seguin graduate could turn himself into a high second-round pick with a solid week. He needs a good 40 time, and he needs to be at his best in interviews.
WR Chris Givens (Wake Forest) The Wylie product could have used another year in college, but he chose to turn pro after 21 all-purpose touchdowns in three seasons and 163 catches for 2,473 yards. Wake Forest listed Givens at 6-foot. He likely will measure shorter than that, but how much shorter? Without the height, he needs a fast 40.
WR Alshon Jeffery (South Carolina) After a breakout 2010 season, Jeffery had a disappointing junior season with only one 100-yard game. He is rumored to have had a weight problem. Jeffery, who is 6-foot-4, can help his cause by weighing less than 230 pounds and running in the low 4.5s.
CB Janoris Jenkins (North Alabama) He has first-round ability, but he will have to satisfy scouts that character is not a concern. He was kicked out of Florida after two arrests for marijuana possession in four months after the 2010 season.
QB Brock Osweiler (Arizona State) He surprised scouts by leaving school early. Osweiler both scares them and intrigues them. He is considered a project, having started only 15 games mostly in the shotgun. He needs to show he can drop back from center.
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