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Austin Hooper Shines In NFL Combine

His Teammates Struggled, But Austin Hooper Impressed On Saturday

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

After the drills of the combine came to a close Saturday, it is widely agreed upon that Austin Hooper is the best looking prospect coming out of Stanford.

Hooper really impressed in his route running, catching ability, and field awareness during the variety of drills he participated in. He shocked scouts when he was able to record a total of 19 reps on the bench press, as he was never considered to be one of the more physically dominant TE's in the NCAA.

His forty yard dash time of 4.72 was nothing special, but as Carolina Panthers TE Greg Olson points out, a crisp route overshadows any lack of speed at that particular position. Mike Mayock currently has Hooper as the 2nd best TE in the draft. He could stand to improve his run blocking, an area where he is average at best. Fortunately for him, this is an ability that coaches can help him improve on. The intangibles all seem to be there for Hooper.

It's a little difficult to determine exactly when Hooper should be selected in the draft. At the moment, I would say he's a late second rounder, maybe early third depending on team needs. I'd be surprised to see him go any earlier, but his talents will certainly keep him out of the later rounds.