Pro Football weekly

Pro Football Weekly tracks the action from the college season through NFL draft weekend.

Scouting Combine Preview (Part 1 The Cynic)

Posted Feb. 18, 2008 @ midnight
And so we embark on that annual trek to Indianapolis’ RCA Dome to partake in the most publicized aspect of the scouting process. Yes, throw away the coaches tape and scouting reports. Throw it all away, because all that stuff these guys did during their college careers, on the field, against other players, teams, offenses and defenses, doesn’t matter. What does matter now is how fast they run in shorts and track shoes. I ...

Bill Polian reveals Combine blunder

Posted Feb. 20, 2008 @ midnight
With the running around in shorts and t-shirt set to commence in only three days, it was interesting to hear Colts’ President Bill Polian’s take on the Scouting Combine. During an interview on ESPN radio, Polian suggested the Combine serves three purposes – medical, psychological, and the 40-yard dash. According to Polian, in addition to evaluating past injuries, the medical evaluations are consistently thorough enough to also reveal previously undetected life-threatening (presumably heart) ailments. Such ...

Greetings from Indy!

Posted Feb. 20, 2008 @ midnight
And we arrive in Indianapolis! It’s now been roughly nine hours since myself and PFW traveling companions Dan Arkush, Mike Wilkening and Dan Parr arrived after a rather painless, three-hour trek Chicago, and as much as I’d love to bombard you with the latest and greatest from the center of the NFL world (for this week, at least), I must admit that thus far, there’s nothing noteworthy to report. Sigh. So far ...

O-line main focus on first day

Posted Feb. 21, 2008 @ midnight
A little more than three hours than now, another Combine will be underway. And the PFW crew is getting ready to cover it like a blanket. It should be interesting. Although you couldn't necessarily tell by the activity on the streets of downtown Indianapolis last night, attendance is expected to be greater than ever. That's why we're planning on getting to the Convention Center as soon as the doors open, so we ...

Thursday's schedule of Combine speakers

Posted Feb. 21, 2008 @ midnight
All times Eastern: 10 a.m.: Bears head coach Lovie Smith10:30 a.m.: Bills head coach Dick Jauron11 a.m.: Steelers director of football operations Kevin Colbert11:30 a.m.: Jets head coach Eric Mangini1 p.m.: 49ers general manager Scot McCloughan1:30 p.m.: 49ers head coach Mike Nolan Also, offensive linemen, tight ends and specialists will be meeting with the media.  

And a guard shall lead them...

Posted Feb. 21, 2008 @ midnight
The first prospect to make an appearance today was Virginia OG Branden Albert, far and away the most well-regarded player at his position and likely the only one with a shot at going in Round One. Albert, who measured in at 6-5½ and 309 pounds, is athletic enough to play tackle — he played the position in high school and made two starts at left tackle at UVA — and he said he's open to playing ...

Meet Shane Longest

Posted Feb. 21, 2008 @ midnight
PK Shane Longest was one of just four kickers invited to the Combine. He was refreshingly unrehearsed while meeting with the media at a small table a few moments ago and had probably the funniest line of the morning discussing his recent physical exam. Longest is from tiny St. Xavier university, a Catholic school in Chicago with an enrollment of 5,705. It took about a minute before the first question about his last name ...

Give it up for the little guy

Posted Feb. 21, 2008 @ midnight
In the land of abnormally massive human beings, we finally have a normal-sized guy come to the podium. In fact, Oregon State PK Alexis Serna qualifies as being small — even away from the rather large standards of professional football. Serna measured in at 5-6 ½, 170 pounds. Even more than just his stature, he looked like a kid facially, as well. It’s awfully hard not to root for Serna. A former walk-on for the Beavers ...

Chris Long: Defensive end of the Steelers' dreams?

Posted Feb. 21, 2008 @ midnight
Chris Long is all but certain, save for some extraordinary circumstances, not to be on the board when the Steelers pick 23rd in April's draft. Every indication is that he will be drafted in the top 10, so Pittsburgh would have to make a bold move to get him. But if he starts to slide, it will be no surprise if the Steelers start to work the phones. Kevin Colbert, the Steelers' director of ...

NFL higher-ups headline first day

Posted Feb. 22, 2008 @ midnight
Wow. Sorry I haven't blogged sooner, but from the moment we entered the Indianapolis Convention Center Thursday morning, it's been a nonstop whirlwind. And it was only the calm before the storm that is expected to erupt Saturday with QBs, RBs and WRs on the docket, as well as 15 or so NFL higher-ups. Even though there were a lot less of them yesterday, the NFL types dominated the scene over the draft-eligible ...

Friday's Combine schedule

Posted Feb. 22, 2008 @ midnight
Check out this list. Oh, and top RB, WR and QB prospects meet the media today, too. What a day...   (All times Eastern)  10:00 a.m.: Packers GM Ted Thompson11 a.m.: Giants head coach Tom Coughlin11:15 a.m.: Vikings head coach Brad Childress11:45 a.m.: Texans head coach Gary Kubiak12:00 p.m.: Texans GM Rick Smith12:30 p.m.: Colts head coach Tony Dungy1:00 p.m.: Chiefs head coach ...

Wolverine-slayer has Pats on the mind

Posted Feb. 22, 2008 @ midnight
The fastest man in the draft, Appalachian St. WR Dexter Jackson was one of the first prospects into the media room this morning. He said he plans on running the 40-yard dash in the 4.22-4.3 range and has garnered a lot of interest from the Patriots. If New England were to take the 5-9, 182 pound burner, he likely would serve primarily as a return specialist, but he seems intent on finding his ...

Mangini lied to us

Posted Feb. 22, 2008 @ midnight
And this is why you have to take all coaches’ comments regarding player personnel with a grain of salt. Yesterday, Jets coach Eric Mangini addressed the media in Indianapolis, and realizing I hadn’t heard anything on ILB Jonathan Vilma in months, asked Mangini what his status is, and if he’ll be back in the starting lineup when training camp opens. Vilma, you might recall, was a star middle linebacker his first two years ...

Texas WR Limas Sweed on every receiver's dream: playing with Tom Brady

Posted Feb. 22, 2008 @ midnight
"I think that would be the coolest thing ever," Sweed said, smiling. And that was all the projected first-round pick needed to say, really.

Two observations on Delaware QB Joe Flacco

Posted Feb. 22, 2008 @ midnight
1) He answered a bunch of questions about being a "small-school" quarterback in stride. By the way, I hate that term. I doubt he likes it either, but credit him for being cool about it. 2) He has a dry sense of humor, which became apparent as he got more comfortable meeting with the media. Someone asked him if all of the "buzz" surrounding him made him more confident about his standing as one of ...