The 2019 NFL Draft process is starting to heat up with teams already creating trending stories that will shift the NFL in many ways. The 2019 NFL Scouting Combine was one of the beginning steps for NFL teams to begin the investigative processes into drafting potential impact rookies. There were many prospects that worked out very well in front of NFL scouts and coaches. Some of the top performers come from teams that play in the SEC West. These are players that have already received high-caliber evaluations and were likely to be selected in the 1st round of the 2019 NFL Draft. After their standout performance in the 2019 NFL Scouting Combine, some of these might go first-half of the first round to potentially top five picks.
Quinnen Williams – Defensive Tackle (Alabama)
Williams was already regarded as one of the top prospects to be selected in the 2019 NFL Draft. After a great workout at the 2019 NFL Scouting Combine, he could be only the third player from the Alabama Crimson Tide to be selected first overall in the NFL Draft. After measuring in at 6-3, 303 pounds, Williams ran a 40-yard dash of 4.83 seconds. This is the fourth fastest time that a defensive lineman, that weighed over 300-pounds, has ever run in the combine. He also measured in a 30.5-inch vertical jump and 112-inch broad jump.
Not only does he show his huge frame, but he shows the explosive burst off the ball or snap. The rare combination of his burst, athleticism, surprising speed, brute force, and strength make him a rare prospect for the NFL. He is currently depicted as a potential consistent pro-bowl caliber player for any team. If Williams does well enough in his Alabama pro-day for the Arizona Cardinals to forgo Ohio State defensive end Nick Bosa or Oklahoma Sooners quarterback Kyler Murray, he could be selected first overall in the 2019 NFL Draft.
D.K. Metcalf – Wide Receiver (Ole Miss)
There were many prospects that outperformed expectations. Then there were prospects that performed like freaks in the workout and measurement session of the combine. Former Ole Miss wideout D.K. Metcalf needed to separate himself from a long list of receiver prospects looking to be drafted in the first round of. Not only did Metcalf define himself as a top receiver prospect, he clearly brought his name to a potential top-ten selection list. His measurements at the combine raised many eyebrows of fans, scouts, general managers, and NFL coaches.
He measured in 6’3 feet, 228 pounds with great arm length but the most surprising is his body fat composition at 1.9%. His workout warrior antics gave him a clearly defined muscle body but also makes him a speedy and athletic receiver. Metcalf ran the 40-yard dash at 4.33 seconds, accounted for a 36-inch vertical jump, 134-inch broad jump, and bench-pressed 27-reps of 225-pounds. While he did not excel in the 3-cone drill, he did create buzz for himself at the combine. He ultimately achieved his goal by creating himself as a top-ten selection caliber prospect as well as define himself as the top receiver prospect.
Montez Sweat – Defensive End/Outside Linebacker (Mississippi State)
After a standout performance in the 2019 Senior Bowl week in late January, Montez Sweat made himself a top-15 caliber selection in the draft. After a standout workout in the 2019 NFL Scouting Combine, Sweat made himself a top-ten or possible top-five selection. Sweat literally stood out in the weigh-in process at 6’6, 260 pounds. What made scouts and coaches really take notice was the freakish speed he displayed in the 40-yard dash. Sweat ran a 4.41 in the 40-yard dash, which is the fastest in the history of the NFL Scouting Combine.
Sweat performed great in multiple position drills as a defensive end and as an outside linebacker. This puts off a lot of pressure from Sweat in terms of the lack of elite pass rushing talent he doesn’t have compared to Ohio State defensive lineman Nick Bosa or Kentucky edge rusher Josh Allen. Scouts and coaches will now see how his speed and athleticism will fit in with their team. Many analysts have now Sweat listed as high as the 5th overall pick or somewhere in the top-ten. Most analysts already believe he will be an instant starter the second he gets drafted.
Jarrett Stidham – Quarterback (Auburn)
There were many quarterbacks that needed to create a bigger light for themselves with all the talk going towards Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins and Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray. Jarrett Stidham was a quarterback prospect that needed to excel after an underwhelming campaign in 2018 at Auburn. Stidham did very well in the workouts testing portion of the combine in the 40-yard dash and the 20-yard shuttle. He ran 4.81 seconds in the 40-yard dash and 4.33 seconds in the 20-yard shuttle. These are workouts that do not have too high of expectations for quarterbacks in the combine.
Stidham really outperformed in the passing drills of the Scouting Combine where scouts and coaches really focus the most. Haskin, Missouri quarterback Drew Lock, and Stidham were some of the best passers in the Scouting Combine. This was a must-win for Stidham after he faced criticisms of his performance of his last year at Auburn. He displayed great accuracy, ball placement for his receivers, and arm strength. One of the highest praises he received after the Scouting Combine was from NFL analyst Louis Riddick. He placed high ratings on Stidham as high as he placed on now Kansas City Chiefs quarterback Patrick Mahomes II. Stidham might be have put himself into the discussions of quarterbacks to be selected in the 1st round of the 2019 NFL Draft.
Devin White – Linebacker (LSU)
LSU has many prospects that will be selected in the 2019 NFL Draft and two possibly in the top ten. One of those prospects in Devin White displayed his overall versatility and athletic ability in the Scouting Combine. Inside linebackers aren’t positions that are not headline grabbing in the Scouting Combine but White is an exception. White ran an incredibly fast 40-yard dash time of 4.42 seconds. He also had a time of 4.14 seconds in the 20-yard shuttle. This is with him having a mismatched frame of short height of 6’0, and a higher weight of 238-pounds.
White was the most consistent in the linebacker drills of the Scouting Combine along with Michigan linebacker Devin Bush. What makes White different from Bush is the explosive speed he possesses. White is a tackling machine in both the passing and running game. He is also great in the pass rush through blitzes. He chases down angles in tackles, and plays great in coverages (zone or man). Scouts and coaches are impressed at the overall capabilities of White and see him going in the top ten. He possesses the consistency to be an impact if selected within the top-five of the 2019 NFL Draft.