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2016 NFL Draft: Do Top Tackle Prospects Have the Measurables?

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Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

I am not a huge fan of the NFL Combine. I think people overrate its importance. I think there are cases where teams overrate its importance.

That is different from saying it is totally useless. It is important to have a broad idea of how athletic a player is. In many case, it can be more useful as an elimination tool than as a final judge. What I mean is this. If a wide receiver runs a 4.3 40, can we conclude he is going to be a star? No, there are many more things that go into wide receiver play. If a wide receiver runs a 4.8, however, we can probably conclude that he will not be a star. There is a certain threshold for speed and athletic ability. If a receiver cannot hit those, he probably cannot be great in the NFL no matter how much success he has.

With the Jets likely in the market for a tackle, I decided to take a look at the measurables of some of the top prospects vs. the measurables of the top tackles in the NFL.

Using NFLDraftScout.com, I looked at the workout numbers of every tackle who has made either an All Pro team or a Pro Bowl since 2010. Then I took the worst performance in each drill and compared it to the top prospects for this year. Laremy Tunsil has no numbers available since he skipped drills at the Combine.

Player 40 Time 20 Time 10 Time Bench Vert Broad 20 Shuttle 3 Cone
Worst 5.45 3.13 1.87 21 26 8' 06" 4.88 8.23
Decker 5.23 3.02 1.81 20 29 8' 05" 4.76 7.7
Conklin 5 2.92 1.76 25 30 8' 07" 4.57 7.63
Stanley 5.2 3.03 28 1/2 4.9 8.03
Spriggs 4.94 2.9 1.76 31 31 1/2 9' 07" 4.44 7.7
Ifedi 5.27 3.04 1.79 24 32  1/12 9' 01" 4.75
Coleman 22
Clark 5.15 2.99 1.8 18

Taylor Decker performed worse in two categories than every elite tackle. Ronnie Stanley performed worse in one. How much this means is anybody's guess. I'm not quite sure myself. I'm not convinced this rules them out as potential top tackles. It's just something I'm noting in the ongoing evaluation process.