As I watched the quarterbacks, tight ends and wide receivers during the NFL Scouting Combine in primetime on NFL Network, there weren't a ton of surprises. Alabama's Henry Ruggs III is just outrageously fast as he put up the third-fastest time in the history of the Combine (4.27!). Oregon's Justin Herbert and Utah State's Jordan Love threw the ball well, again, as expected. But, as Rich Eisen, Daniel Jeremiah and a slew of former NFL stars waxed poetic about what they had seen on the field, something struck me.
The city of Houston and the surrounding areas in our great state should be incredibly proud of the show that "The Locals" put on Friday night at Lucas Oil Stadium. Let's start with the pride of Richmond, TX, yeah, that's my spot too - Oklahoma wide receiver CeeDee Lamb. The Foster HS product ran 4.50 in the 40, which was a solid time for him. Even as important, he caught the ball as if it were on a string during the on-field portion of the Combine. He made the gauntlet drill look like recess at playtime. He showed off his release at the line of scrimmage, ironically enough on Houston Texans receivers coach John Perry who was assisting at the Combine, on a fade drill. Catching the ball looks simple for a guy I've labeled a thinner DeAndre Hopkins.
Channelview HS star Jalen Hurts came to the Combine with some questions as to whether he will play quarterback in the future. The name Taysom Hill came up A LOT for the greater Houston product, but he did help his cause to stay at quarterback full time. He ran 4.59, posted a 35.0 vertical jump and a 10-5 broad jump, which are great numbers for any skill position, much less quarterback. However, what really helped his cause was the ease with which he threw the ball in all the drills that he did. Now, that's not the end all be all as the questions about him playing quarterback aren't going to be answered in that kind of setting, but it certainly did not hurt his cause with the way he spun the rock on Thursday night.
Baylor University receiver Denzel Mims was an intriguing name for many, especially after such an outstanding Senior Bowl week. In essence, he "won" the night with a workout for the ages - 4.38 in the 40 at 6-3, 207 lb., 16 bench reps, 38.5-inch vertical, 11-10 broad jump and a 6.66 3-cone (!). Having seen him up close at the Academy Sports + Outdoors Texas Bowl, I knew IT was there. I knew he had IT. He flashed IT at Baylor, then stole the show with IT in Mobile and did IT again Thursday night. Another Texas product that helped his cause was University of Texas weapon Devin Duvernay who blazed a 4.39 in the 40, combined with a 35.5-inch vertical. When he did the gauntlet, he was clean as a whistle and caught the last ball and turned up the field like he was playing Oklahoma with the game on the line, speeding up the sideline.
Those four were discussed often throughout the night and, hopefully, made the locals proud.
Check out shots of current Texans offensive players from previous NFL Combines. (Photos via AP Images)