clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Winners and Losers from the NFL Combine at Falcons Positions of Need

Who won? Who lost? Who's going to the Falcons?

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

The 2016 NFL Scouting Combine is in the books. Many participants left Indianapolis on a positive note while others will leave NFL teams running back to the film to explain poor testing times.

Defensive End/Edge Rusher

Shaq Lawson had a great workout on Sunday posting good numbers in the 40 yard dash, 3 cone drill, broad jump, and 20 yard shuttle. Like Vic Beasley last year, Shaq Lawson was able to Justis Mosqueda's Force Players filter, which has had tremendous success in predicting the success of pass rushers transitioning to the NFL.

Noah Spence had a less inspiring combine. He performed well in the broad jump and vertical jump, but his 40 yard dash came in at 4.8. At 251 pounds it would've been nice to see Spence show off the explosion that made him a stud at Eastern Kentucky and the Senior Bowl. Hopefully he performs well at his Pro Day next week.

Wide Receiver

Atlanta is looking to create more explosive plays across from Julio Jones; Will Fuller from Notre Dame definitely fits the bill there. He ran a blazing 4.32 40 yard dash and performed well in the broad jump. Fuller is arguable the best "home run threat" in the draft and his combine solidified that.

Everyone knew Braxton Miller was an exciting athlete and it was incredible to watch him put it all on display at the combine. He jumped well while posting elite agility times. Here's a look at how he compares athletically to other wide receiver prospects since 1999.

Going into the combine I thought De'Runnya Wilson from Mississippi State would make a nice developmental receiving prospect for the for the Falcons. After his dismal performance at the combine he's going to have a hard time getting himself drafted.


Darron Lee from Ohio State stole show amongst the linebacker prospects. He ran a ridiculous 4.47 40 yard dash in Indianapolis and may have jumped out of Lucas Oil Stadium with his broad and vertical jumps. Lee is a bit of a work in progress, but there's no denying he would bring a much needed does of athleticism to the Falcons defense.

Reggie Ragland did himself a favor and dropped 12 pounds from the Senior Bowl, weighing in at 247 pounds. He put up average numbers at the combine which helped alleviate some concerns that he might be too slow to play in a 4-3 defense. Atlanta needs someone with a little more range than he offers, but it wouldn't be surprising to see him be their first round pick after a solid combine.

Deion Jones from LSU put together a nice combine of his own. He needed to show that his timed speed was as good as it looked on film and he did that with a 4.59 40 yard dash and an impressive showing in the broad jump.

Defensive Line

Unsurprisingly, there were several impressive performances from the defensive linemen at the combine. Sheldon Rankins, Jonathan Bullard, and Robert Nkemdiche were the stars of the weekend. All of them posted ridiculous jumps while Bullard and Rankins posted solid agility times.

I thought Vernon Butler was going to have a better combine than he did, but he didn't completely blow it. At 323 pounds it was a bit unreasonable for him to completely nail the workouts. For his size, he had an average performance.


The two safeties that seem like a perfect fit for the Falcons are Keanu Neal from Florida and Darian Thompson from Bise State. They couldn't have had more different workouts.

Neal performed very well excelling in the jumps while posting a solid 40 yard dash.

Darian Thompson had a brutal workout. He didn't perform well in any drill, but he was apparently struggling through an illness the days before he worked out. Hopefully he can improve greatly at his pro day in the coming weeks.