Jameis Winston draws praise from Kurt Warner

Jameis Winston is the biggest star at the NFL Scouting Combine, and he impressed analysts with his on-field workout Saturday.

Former NFL quarterback Kurt Warner was an on-field analyst for the NFL Network's coverage of the combine, and he liked Winston's form.

"He always gets his cleats in the ground," Warner said, praising Winston's placement of his feet on his throws.

Warner also said, "When you watch him throw, he's got great touch on the ball."

Winston -- who measured 6-foot-3¾ and 231 pounds during the combine weigh-in -- looked strong during the throwing portion of the drills. Granted, there are no defenders on the field and everyone is in shorts, but Winston's arm strength and ability to make all the throws was evident.

Warner also praised Marcus Mariota, but did note that in film study he had done of the 2014 Heisman winner, he saw "very few throws that were anticipatory throws."

Mariota, of course, played in a spread offense at Oregon and wasn't asked to be a pocket passer; Winston played in a pro-style attack at FSU and did the bulk of his work in the pocket.

To that end, both Warner and NFL Media analyst Mike Mayock said there is going to be a learning curve for Mariota in an NFL offense. "All the individual components are there," Mayock said.

It'll be up to Mariota -- and the coaches of the team that drafts him -- to make sure the pieces fit like they are supposed to.

Not surprisingly, Mariota ran much faster than Winston in the 40. Mariota had a 4.52 clocking, while Winston was at 4.97. A shoulder shrug essentially was the reaction of NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah.

"I don't care that he ran a 4.9 because he can extend plays," Jeremiah said. "He can hang in there (in the pocket) with bodies all around him."

Mike Huguenin can be reached at mike.huguenin@nfl.com. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.

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