By Ryan Mayer
The second day of the combine is here and that means the quarterbacks, wide receivers, and tight ends will take their shot at impressing the scouts. For the quarterbacks, this day mainly focuses on what they can do in the passing drills. But, this is about the numbers. Objectively, what are the best performances we’ve seen by drill during the combine in years past. Let’s dive in.
40 yard dash- Reggie McNeal QB Texas A&M 2006- McNeal blazed to a 4.35 time in the 40 which still stands as the fastest ever run by a player at the QB spot. RG III came close back in 2012 when he ran a 4.41. McNeal was drafted as a WR by the Cincinnati Bengals in the 6th round (193rd) and played just one year with the team. He then moved on to the Canadian Football League where he played for Toronto Argonauts, Calgary Stampeders, and Edmonton Eskimos.
Bench Press- Jason Boltus QB Hartwick 2009- Never heard of this guy? I hadn’t either until I looked up this stat and sure enough he put up 225 pounds 26 times in the lead-up to the draft. He wasn’t drafted, but has gone on to have a long career in the CFL (Hamilton Tiger-Cats/Winnipeg Blue Bombers) and the AFL (Spokane Shock, Omaha Nighthawks, Utah Blaze, Orlando Predators, and Tampa Bay Storm).
Vertical Jump- Joshua Portis QB California (PA) 2011- Another guy from outside the DI realm, Portis jumped 40 inches in 2011, but went undrafted. He was signed by the Seahawks and spent one season with the team and one on their practice squad before being released in 2013. After that he spent time with the Toronto Argonauts and Winnipeg Blue Bombers of the CFL.
Broad Jump- Brad Smith QB Missouri 2006- Smith was a dual-threat QB in college and came to the combine as a QB, but was always likely to be a WR at the NFL level. He recorded a 10’8″ broad jump and combined with a 4.46 40 and 39.5-inch vertical, did enough to convince the Jets to take him in the 4th round (103rd overall). He has been in the league for nine years playing for three different teams (Jets, Bills, Eagles) and his best years came in NY with the Jets. In his career he’s amassed 134 carries for 972 yards and 4 touchdowns, 104 receptions for 987 yards and 5 touchdowns and 4 kick return touchdowns.
3-cone drill- Jordan Lynch QB Northern Illinois 2014- Lynch was another dual-threat QB expected to try and make a position change. His showing at the combine including a record 6.55 seconds in the 3-cone drill wasn’t enough to get him drafted. After spending a brief time with the Chicago Bears, Lynch moved on to the CFL with the Edmonton Eskimos in 2015 and as a RB carried 39 times for 155 yards and 4 touchdowns as Edmonton went on to win the Grey Cup.
20 yard shuttle- Brett Hundley QB UCLA 2015- Hundley had a prolific career at UCLA and showed off his athleticism last year posting a 3.98 in this drill a record for the position group. He was taken in the 5th round (147th overall) by the Cleveland Browns before being traded eventually to the Green Bay Packers to back up Aaron Rodgers.
60 yard shuttle- Tim Tebow QB Florida 2010- C’mon you didn’t think we’d get through this list without mentions Timmy did you? Tebow is still one of the most polarizing QB’s ever but he does hold the record for QB’s in this drill with a 11.27 second time. He was drafted in the 1st round (25th overall) by the Denver Broncos, spent two years there with some magical moments before being moved to the Jets in 2012. He spent one season in NY and hasn’t been in the league since other than training camp looks with the Patriots and Eagles.
Ryan Mayer is an Associate Producer for CBS Local Sports. Ryan lives in NY but comes from Philly and life as a Philly sports fan has made him cynical. Anywhere sports are being discussed, that’s where you’ll find him.