It is a busy day for the Oakland Raiders on Sunday at the 2014 NFL Combine. They got a chance to see some prospects they will be very interested in with the fifth selection in the upcoming 2014 NFL Draft. Two positions of need in Oakland, quarterback and wide receiver, showed their stuff today.
The quarterback prospects were a bit of a disappointment with both Teddy Bridgewater and Johnny Manziel not throwing at the combine. Both will wait until their respective Pro Days in order to show the scouts more of their throwing ability. Bridgewater also sat out of the 40 yard dash, while Manziel clocked in a 4.68 forty time to put him in the top five of the quarterbacks. Another projected top pick, UCF's Blake Bortles threw and ran well. He posted 4.93 in the forty yard dash at 6'5", 232 pounds. He also displayed a strong arm in the passing drills. Fresno State's Derek Carr ran the fifth best time of 4.69 seconds in the forty yard dash.
With not too much to watch from Manziel and Bridgewater, the Raiders turned their attention to the stacked wide receiver workout. Consensus number one receiver in the class Sammy Watkins backed up his lofty position with solid workouts. He ran a 4.43 in the forty yard dash. It may have been a little slower than expected, but he can move. He also was able to show off his terrific hands, effortlessly making catches in the drills. One area he needs work will be his route running. That can be said of most college prospects, but Watkins was not a crisp with the footwork on his routes. He is a physical specimen with rare playmaking ability and his combine performance will make it difficult for the Raiders to pass on him in the draft.
One of the only things going against Watkins in terms of the Raiders selecting him, is the depth of this wide receiver class. Watkins is the best prospect, but many other players could be better value. Oregon State's Brandin Cooks posted the best forty yard dash time at 4.3. Mississippi's Donte Moncrief, Oklahoma's Jalen Saunders, Saginaw Valley State's Jeff Janis, and LSU's Odell Beckham were all impressive running and in the drills. This is a very deep wide receiver draft, with the class as a whole performing very well.
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