Combine advice

It used to be that watching the NFL draft made you a fanatic. Now, the NFL Combine leading up to the draft has become a favorite time of the year for many fans. It is the first chance for most people to see most of the top college players in one place, performing acts of extraordinary athleticism.

It can be a bit tedious for the uninitiated, so I tried to pull together some information that should help here.

The sexiest drill is the 40-yard dash. The broadcast will likely be showing that much of the time, but it is more relevant for some positions more than others. Running backs, receivers, pass rushers, linebackers and cornerbacks are more impacted by 40-yard speed than offensive lineman and defensive tackles. Quarterbacks generally have not been measured much by their 40 time until the past few years when running became a larger part of the position.

You will notice the broadcast will show the 10-yard split. That is a better measure of short area burst, and is important for bigger players like lineman.

Running backs are a group to watch for the Seahawks this year, and speed is only one part of the equation. Pay attention to broad jump, vertical jump, and the 3-cone drill. Broad jump is a good indicator of lower body strength, vertical jump is a decent gauge of explosiveness, and 3-cone measures agility.

I don’t think you can learn a ton about offensive lineman here. The best way to judge lineman is to see them in pass blocking drills, but there is no contact at the combine. That is why watching Senior Bowl practices in late January is worth the time.

In general, just enjoy watching some great athletes compete. Pick a few favorites and look for highlight videos of them on YouTube. Tell all your friends who the Seahawks should draft, and then watch in disbelief when John Schneider picks a player you have never heard of.

 

When to watch, where to watch

The combine will be televised by the NFL Network. You can also watch online.

Here’s the full broadcast schedule (all times Pacific):

Friday, Feb. 26

Running backs, offensive line, special teams, 6 a.m.-1 p.m.

Saturday, Feb. 27

Quarterbacks, wide receivers and tight ends, 6 a.m.-1 p.m.

Sunday, Feb. 28

Defensive line and linebackers, 6 a.m.-1 p.m.

Monday, Feb. 29

Defensive backs, 6 a.m.-1 p.m.

Click HERE for a complete list of players invited to the combine.

NFL.com will also post results in a variety of testing categories as they occur.

 

Full Schedule

DAY 1 ARRIVALS*: Group 1 (Placekickers, Special Teams, Offensive Line), Group 2 (Offensive Line), Group 3 (Running Backs)

Tuesday

February 23, 2016 Travel to Indianapolis* ~ Registration ~ Hospital Pre-Exam & X-rays ~ Orientation ~ Interviews
Wednesday
February 24, 2016 Measurements ~ Medical Examinations ~ Media ~ Interviews
Thursday
February 25, 2016 NFLPA Meeting ~ Psychological Testing ~ PK/ST Workout ~ Bench Press ~ Interviews
Friday
February 26, 2016 On-Field Workout (timing, stations, skill drills) ~ Departure from Indianapolis

This group will be on TV starting Friday morning.

 

DAY 2 ARRIVALS*: Group 4 (Quarterbacks, Wide Receivers), Group 5 (Quarterbacks, Wide Receivers), Group 6 (Tight Ends)

Wednesday

February 24, 2016 Travel to Indianapolis* ~ Registration ~ Hospital Pre-Exam & X-rays ~ Orientation ~ Interviews
Thursday
February 25, 2016 Measurements ~ Medical Examinations ~ Media ~ Interviews
Friday
February 26, 2016 NFLPA Meeting ~ Psychological Testing ~ Bench Press ~ Interviews
Saturday
February 27, 2016 On-Field Workout (timing, stations, skill drills) ~ Departure from Indianapolis

This group will be on TV starting Saturday morning.

DAY 3 ARRIVALS*: Group 7 (Defensive Line), Group 8 (Defensive Line), Group 9 (Linebackers)

Thursday

February 25, 2016 Travel to Indianapolis* ~ Registration ~ Hospital Pre-Exam & X-rays ~ Orientation ~ Interviews
Friday
February 26, 2016 Measurements ~ Medical Examinations ~ Media ~ Interviews
Saturday
February 27, 2016 NFLPA Meeting ~ Psychological Testing ~ Bench Press ~ Interviews
Sunday
February 28, 2016 On-Field Workout (timing, stations, skill drills) ~ Departure from Indianapolis

This group will be on TV starting Sunday morning.

DAY 4 ARRIVALS: Group 10 (DB), Group 11 (DB)

Friday

February 26, 2016 Travel to Indianapolis ~ Registration ~ Hospital Pre-Exam & X-rays ~ Orientation ~ Interviews
Saturday
February 27, 2016 Measurements ~ Medical Examinations ~ Media ~ Interviews
Sunday
February 28, 2016 NFLPA Meeting ~ Psychological Testing ~ Bench Press ~ Interviews
Monday
February 29, 2016 On-Field Workout (timing, stations, skill drills) ~ Departure from Indianapolis

This group will be on TV starting Monday morning.
* Select players from any Group may arrive one day prior to their scheduled date listed above in order to assist with medical scheduling. This will be based on flight schedules and medical tests only and no players arriving early will have advanced contact with teams.

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