Who Wowed Me

So, the offensive portion of the Combine workouts has drawn to a close. Defense started this morning, and we’re already getting reports of some impressive forty times (Gerald McCoy sub-5.0), but I won’t get to watch any of that until tonight at the earliest. Damn you employment! I thought it might be worth taking a look at a few of the players who really impressed me this weekend.

Trent Williams – OT – Oklahoma

While the big “riser” of the weekend will probably be Maryland OT Bruce Campbell who put on a freakish show, it was Trent Williams who really impressed me. He ran nearly as fast as Campbell, and in the actual O-Line drills he looked better and, unlike Campbell, he has an incredible track record of success (and health). His slide drills were among the most impressive of the bunch, which is one of the more important drills for tackles — he looked natural and fast. Williams has fallen a little down draft boards because of higher upside guys like Anthony Davis and Bruce Campbell, but as far as guys who would be ready to start year one in the NFL, he’s right up there with Okung.

Montarrio Hardesty – RB – Tennessee

He doesn’t have the speed of Jahvid Best or C.J. Spiller, but he’s not too far behind. He’s also got a few inches and 20 lbs on those guys, right in line with what Carroll and Schneider have intimated that the Seahawks are looking for this year. He is very well built, looked faster than anticipated, and worked out well through each of the workouts. Add to that the fact that he is known to have great work ethic, excellent ball security, and could contribute from day one as a #2 big back in the NFL. He could pair well with Justin Forsett as the big bruising back, but would not be less T.J. Duckett and more… well, more of a big Justin Forsett, I suppose.

Riley Cooper – WR – Florida

Now, don’t mishear me here: Riley Cooper is not the best WR that I saw this weekend. He just happened to catch my eye the most. Jordan Shipley has been quietly receiving a lot of comparisons to the ultra white receiver cliche Wes Welker. That’s fair. Riley Cooper has not, but he looked the part this weekend. Neither Shipley or Cooper can run like Welker, which is important, but they’re both pretty tough. Cooper was catching everything tossed near him, he looked great coming in and out of his cuts, he has good football IQ by most accounts, and his hands were soft enough to pickpocket a glass wallet (nope, that doesn’t make sense). If Cooper were to fall to the fourth round, there’s great value there as he could contribute immediately. He’s got the size that Schneider likes — 6’3″ 215 lbs — and the hair of a true So-Cal dude, so Carroll should dig him. He doesn’t have top-end speed, but neither does Houshmandzadeh.