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Ask 5: Which prospect will generate most buzz at NFL Combine?


The NFL Scouting Combine (March 2-5 on NFL Network) will be the first and only time we get to see all of the 2018 NFL Draft's top prospects in the same venue at the same time. Every year we see a dozen or so players really elevate their stock with a fantastic workout. Who are those guys going to be this year? I polled five NFL personnel executives with that question. Here are their answers.

Executive 1: Boise State LB Leighton Vander Esch
"The Boise linebacker is going be 6-foot-4 and run in the 4.6s (in the 40-yard dash) at 250 pounds. He's got really long arms and he's going to jump close to 40 inches in the vertical. He is a freaky athlete. Great high school basketball player. He'll get first-round buzz in Indy."

Executive 2: Washington DT Vita Vea
"Vea is 345 pounds and he's going to run a 4.9 40. It feels like the buzz is already building around the league, but there will still be a shock factor when a guy that big runs that fast. He can move!"

Executive 3: LSU CB Donte Jackson
"The nickel corner from LSU is FAST!!! His testing numbers will be off the charts."

Executive 4: FSU S Derwin James
"Derwin is going to start garnering some top-five attention after everyone sees him work out. He's going to turn some heads after he runs and does all the testing. He's a rare athlete at that size."

Executive 5: N.C. State DE Kentavius Street
"Wait until you see the numbers Kentavius Street puts up. He's going to be 285 pounds and he might run (the 40) in the 4.6s."

Summary: That's one vote apiece for Vea, James, Vander Esch, Street and Jackson.

Conclusion: This is a good group of players. My top choice would be Vea. I was a scout for the Ravens when they drafted Haloti Ngata and I think Vea is even more athletic than Ngata. He's been compared by some evaluators to Dontari Poe, but I have a much higher grade on Vea coming out of college than I did for Poe. James and Jackson are both considered first-round players, and their stock should only go up after they work out. Vander Esch reminds me of a better version of Zach Cunningham, and I've been told by multiple scouts that Street is going to put on a show.

Follow Daniel Jeremiah on Twitter @MoveTheSticks.



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