Day one of the combine got underway this morning. Running backs have been a heavy favorite for the Panthers at pick eight. Here's a quick combine overview of potential running backs for the Panthers with the eighth overall pick.
LEONARD FOURNETTE, LSU
HEIGHT-6'1", WEIGHT- 240 LBS
People were quick to criticize and become skeptical when Fournette put up a measly 28.5" vertical to start the days drills after showing up weighing 240lbs. Critics were later impressed after he put up a 4.51 forty yard dash number at 240 pounds. His forty time was only .02 slower than both Cook (210lbs) and McCaffrey (202lbs) and is also the fastest for a running back weighing 240 or more since 2003. Fournette said Thursday that five pounds of that was "water weight." Fournette will catch some slack for the vertical and not participating in the broad jump. He will reportedly do his bench press at the LSU Pro Day.
40 YARD DASH- 4.51 seconds (T-10th)
VERTICAL JUMP- 28.5" (T-18th)
BENCH PRESS- Opted to do at his Pro Day.
DALVIN COOK, FLA ST.
HEIGHT- 5' 10", WEIGHT- 210 LBS
Dalvin Cook had a solid outing while participating in all the events. He showed off his strength in the bench press. Much like Fournette, his vertical wasn't real impressive. Last years running backs averaged a 34.5" vertical.
40 YARD DASH- 4.49 seconds (T-8th)
VERTICAL JUMP- 30.5" (T-14th)
BROAD JUMP- 116" (T-11th)
BENCH PRESS- 22 Reps (T-3rd)
CHRISTIAN MCCAFFREY, STANFORD
HEIGHT- 5'11", WEIGHT- 202LBS
McCaffrey jumped through the roof with a second best vertical jump on the day at 37.5", but showed his lack of strength with a low 10 rep bench press. McCaffrey made his money showing his footwork through the running drills later, showcasing his quick feet.
40 YARD DASH- 4.48 (T-7th)
VERTICAL JUMP- 37.5" (T-2nd)
BROAD JUMP- 121" (T-6th)
BENCH PRESS- 10 (2nd Worst)
Panthers fans hoping for a running back at pick eight should be pleased with the majority of all this. Each player has a number you would like to see better, but they all have the most important thing, good film.
McCaffrey is still a stretch for the Panthers at eight. I personally don't think Cook will be selected by the Panthers at eight due to his off field history. You would like to see Fournette participate in the broad jump, particularly after the low vertical. But again they all have good tape. Stay tuned for other position group results.
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Article photo by Jesse Fraetis.