On Tuesday, Feb. 26, the 2013 NFL Combine came to a close in Indianapolis. The four-day event from Lucas Oil Stadium provided an opportunity for hundreds of prospects to show their stuff in front of all 32 NFL teams. One of the most heralded drills held annually is the forty-yard dash.
Out of the top-5 overall speedsters, there was some diversity in terms of position.
1. Marquise Goodwin, WR - 4.27
2. Tavon Austin, WR - 4.34
3. Onterio McCalebb, RB - 4.34
4. Ryan Swope, WR - 4.34
5. Darius Slay, CB - 4.36
The combine saw multiple players run sub-4.4 forties, which is stellar. The top spot, however, is held by Marquise Goodwin of Texas. Goodwin is a U.S. Olympian with world-class speed. He was three fractions of a second away from tying Chris Johnson's 4.24 forty, which is an all-time best.
Goodwin is not projected to go in the first round like Johnson was, or even as the second-place Austin is. He will likely be a mid-round pick because he does not possess the size and elite hands required for a top pick at WR.
On the other hand, Austin, who ran almost a whole tenth of a second slower, is a virtual first-round lock. He was a dynamo at the University of West Virginia, utilized as a receiver, rusher and return specialist.
He had an tremendous performance at the combine, and will go higher than all of the track stars listed above. However, McCalebb, Swope and Slay should all earn a fair level of interest. At the NFL level, there is always room for role players with incredible speed.
Tavon Austin's 40 looked effortless. Just a calm, chill 4.25 in the park. Kinda like he plays.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 24, 2013