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Texas Bowl Alums at the 2017 NFL Scouting Combine

Heading into the 2017 NFL Scouting Combine, much of the talk centered around the four potential first round quarterbacks, including Texas Tech star Patrick Mahomes, and top overall pick candidate Texas A&M defensive end Myles Garrett. The Aggie star’s last game was the Texas Bowl at NRG Stadium and this would be the first time we’d seen him, publicly, since.

Yet, it was the defensive end wearing purple on the other sideline that night that may have been the revelation of the Combine. Kansas State defensive end Jordan Willis was the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year, but he received about 0.10% of the hype that Garrett did heading to Indianapolis. On Sunday in Indianapolis, Willis was extraordinary. The 6-4, 255 lb. Wildcat ran 4.53 in the 40 yard dash, jumped 39” in the vertical jump, 10’+ on the broad jump and a sub-7 second 3-cone drill that was one of the best for any defensive linemen. Although he was a decorated player in Manhattan and had a tremendous showing in the Texas Bowl, not many scouts looked at Willis as a top three round selection. His Combine performance may force them to think otherwise.

Garrett, though, was the national star of the show. He measured 6-4 and 272 lb. with 35”+ arms. That was impressive enough; then, he took the field on Sunday afternoon. Wow! He ran 4.64 in the 40 and posted a 41” vertical jump. FORTY ONE INCHES…at 272 lb!! That’s ridiculous. He won’t have to do much at his Pro Day, although he did say he wasn’t completely satisfied with his 4.64. Perhaps, he has Jadeveon Clowney’s 4.53 mark on his brain.

When LSU’s Leonard Fournette walked to the podium for his press session on Thursday, he was one of the main attractions of the weekend. He had weighed in at 240 lb. the day before and the media were ready to know why, amongst other things. He told the assembled press not to worry about it; he’d crush it when he got on the Lucas Oil turf. The next day, he ran 4.51 in the 40 yard dash at 240 lb., one of the most impressive 40-times for any Combine participant.

The Texas Bowl participants over the past couple of years put on quite the display, like they did at NRG Stadium over the past few seasons.

By: John Harris


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