The NFL Scouting Combine takes place this week with the top college football prospects reporting to Indianapolis. The evaluating process is ongoing and can change as the process takes place.
Former University of Alabama linebacker and current Baltimore Ravens team captain C. J. Mosley is an example of the roller coaster ride draft prospects experience. Mosley, was voted a First-Team All American by the Associated Press and was the Butkus Award winner (Nation's top LB) coming out of college.
Things got a little choppy for Mosley before he reported to the 2014 NFL Combine. Mosley had surgery to repair a torn labrum, which prevented him from participating in all of the drills. He participated in the vertical jump (35 inches), short shuttle (4.40 seconds), three-cone drill (7.30 seconds), and broad jump (9 feet, 10 inches).
There were concerns about Mosley's shoulder but was medically cleared by most teams. However, teams wanted to see him complete testing on the bench press and run the 40-yard dash. Instead they had to wait.
NFL Scouts and team’s personnel place a huge emphasis on the Combine workouts so not being able to do everything in Indianapolis placed more importance on Mosley's Pro Day. Projections for Mosley's draft status were all over the board leading up to the 2014 NFL Draft.
A fast time in the 40-yard dash at the Combine could have solidified Mosley's status as the top inside linebacker. The Pittsburgh Steelers fell in love with Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier after a stellar workout at the Combine and chose him with the 15th pick in the draft. Mosley went to the Ravens a couple of picks later (No. 17).
Mosley impressed coaches in meetings with his football smarts. As the quarterback of the defense for Alabama, it was imperative for Mosley to know the defense inside out. He was able to carry that comfort level and experience to meetings at the Combine.
Although his workout wasn't stellar, the play that Mosley put on film spoke for itself. In the end, teams new he was an elite football player. That's why the Ravens so readily selected Mosley. As a four-time Pro Bowler and four-time second-team All Pro, Mosley has more than proved his worth since coming to Baltimore.
There will be a lot of stories about different prospects having outstanding performances at the Combine this week, but never lose track of the most important aspect which is what the prospect does on the football field. C.J. Mosley is proof of that.