Now that spring has begun, football practices are underway at Stanford, and off the Farm, former Cardinal are prepping for the NFL draft. This weekend, the NFL combine took place in Indianapolis, and four former Stanford football players participated. Let’s grade their performances.
Thomas entered this weekend with the possibility of being a top ten pick, and he lived up to expectations. Thomas ran a 4.69 40 yard dash, benched 30 reps of 225 pounds, and a 126 inch broad jump, and in almost every category, Thomas ranked inside the top five for defensive lineman. Still, however, he was constantly out shined by Myles Garret.
McCaffrey arrived to the combine with a chip on his shoulder and left with plenty of questions about his strength. However, McCaffrey did prove why he is so talented. ESPN pointed out,
McCaffrey struggled though in the bench press, where he only completed ten repetitions, which was well below the average running back.
With kickers, it doesn’t matter how strong or fast your are; all that matters is your ability to nail field goals. Conrad Ukropina can make field goals. He was the only kicker to make 15 of 15 field goals at the NFL combine.
Rector is not a top receiver prospect but still has a chance of making the NFL. At the combine, Rector apparently hoped of running his 40 yard dash in under 4.4 seconds but finished in 4.42 seconds, and in multiple drills, Rector placed in the top ten for his position.
Overall, Stanford players did well at the combine, and most improved their draft stock. Solomon Thomas performed very well, and his draft stock is higher than ever. Rumors are flying, and some people predict the 49ers might take him with the second pick, but it’s more likely that he’ll fall outside the top five.
Christian McCaffrey’s performance on the other hand probably did not affect his draft stock. Scouts were already aware of his versatility, but by struggling in the strength section, McCaffrey showed that he might not be an every down back.
Conrad Ukropina lit up the combine and undoubtedly helped his draft chances. Lastly, Rector could not possibly hurt his stock, which was already low. He placed in the top ten for his position in multiple drills and probably caught some scout’s eyes.
The 2017 NFL Draft takes place between April 27th and 29th, and Stanford could have multiple players picked.