Central Michigan QB Dan LeFevour opted to throw only to stationary targets at the NFL combine, a decision that puzzled many scouts, put added emphasis on his pro day workout and began to slow some of the momentum he gained at the Senior Bowl.
LeFevour failed to come through on campus, though. Despite throwing to college teammates in a scripted session, he was out of rhythm and late on several throws and put several balls outside the frame of his receivers.
LeFevour also struggled when throwing the ball deep after spending his college career in a spread offense, but much like Senior Bowl week he did look better throwing the ball underneath on short routes. His footwork also looked a little off, and LeFevour is clearly still getting used to dropping back from under center.
Furthermore, LeFevour offered up the explanation that his timing was off because he and his receivers are not in midseason form, but scouts don't want to hear that. You can't go halfway at the combine and then offer up that kind of explanation when things don't go well at your pro day.
This year's quarterback class is not a deep one, and LeFevour missed a big chance to improve his mid-round stock. He was a productive, athletic quarterback in the spread system, but his struggles with pro-style drops and throws have his stock sliding a bit. In fact, Troy QB Levi Brown has impressed us during film study and could make a push to move ahead of LeFevour in that mid-round group.
Chippewas wideouts look good
Wide receivers Antonio Brown and Bryan Anderson worked out with LeFevour, and things went decidedly better for them. Because LeFevour was late and somewhat inaccurate with passes, Brown and Anderson were able to show their ability to open up and adjust to make catches outside their frame.
Brown ran the 40-yard dash in the high 4.4-second range, improving on his 4.57 from the combine, while Anderson remained in the high 4.5s. Anderson's speed is not great, but he has a big body (6-4¾, 210 pounds) and can make plays without getting great separation from defenders. Brown needed a faster time given his smaller frame (5-10⅛), and his improvement keeps him solidly in the sixth round, while Anderson has done enough to get himself into the late-round discussion.
Momentum building for Easley
Connecticut WR Marcus Easley ran a 4.46 at the combine and is building steam at the right time. Easley has moved up in a deep group of receivers, and after catching the ball well at his pro day -- he dropped the first pass thrown to him but made some acrobatic, one-handed grabs -- Easley is now solidly in the fourth round and could even sneak into the late third.
On the other hand, Huskies RB Andre Dixon missed an opportunity to cement his sixth-round status when he did not run the 40. Dixon clocked in at 4.63 at the combine, and we would have liked to see a better time from him. He is a no-nonsense, between-the-tackles runner but weighs just 205 pounds, and proving his top-end speed could have cemented a sixth-round grade. Dixon is still an interesting late-round prospect, though.
Perrilloux answers size question
The off-the-field problems of Jacksonville State QB Ryan Perrilloux have been well-documented -- from the incidents that led to his dismissal from the team at LSU to the suspension that cost him the first game of the 2009 season -- but his physical talent has never been in question. Perrilloux measured 6-2¼ at his pro day, not ideal height but adequate for a player who moves well in the pocket. In a quarterback class that lacks depth Perrilloux could be worth a late-round pick if teams are comfortable he is shedding his character baggage.
DE Young stumbles
We liked the pass-rushing potential we saw from N.C. State DE Willie Young heading into the 2009 season, but Young did not develop his hand use and variety of moves the way we expected. After a lackluster workout, his stock is sliding. Young ran in the 4.9 range, a time he might get away with if his showing in position drills had been better; because he looks quick on film we thought his timed speed would be better.
On top of that, Young is already 24 years old and you have to wonder how much upside he has after failing to take the next step as a senior. He still has some value as a situational pass-rusher and could perhaps attempt to transition to 3-4 outside linebacker, but we rate him as a fourth-round pick.
DE/OLB McCoy coming on
Middle Tennessee DE/OLB Chris McCoy had a productive 2009 season (20 TFL) and has the look of a sleeper at this point. At 6-3¼ and 261 pounds he is not quite big enough to be an every-down defensive end in a 4-3 scheme, but McCoy ran in the mid-4.7s at his workout and is fast enough to line up as a rush linebacker. He has shown on film the ability to get to the quarterback, and despite not having great size McCoy put up 23 repetitions on the 225-pound bench press, showing very good upper-body power. He could offer good value in the sixth round.