RELATED: 2008 Scouting Combine Index* * *
Posted: 9:20 p.m.
Now that you can cover the NFL scouting combine from your living room, trainer Clif Marshall watched Monday as the stock of big names like Vernon Gholston and unsung grinders like Stanford Keglar went through the roof.
With prospects and agents saying the Bengals are giving off all indications at the combine that they are moving to a 3-4 defense, Monday's workouts for the defensive line and linebackers were of particular note.
For Bengals fans hoping Gholston, the Ohio State end who can also drop, would drop to No. 9, it was not a good day. According to various Web sites, he ripped off a 4.67-second 40-yard dash a day after he lifted 225 pounds 37 times and staked his claim as one of the draft's elite.
Meanwhile, teams had to get a bit nervous when Florida defensive end Derrick Harvey, weighing about 13 pounds over his college weight at 271, ran just 4.8 seconds in the 40.
But Marshall's own Keglar became the star of this combine when the Purdue outside linebacker won five of the seven categories for the linebackers while finishing in the top four of the other two with a 4.58 40 and a 34-inch vertical leap.
Barely had the smoke cleared from the stopwatches when SI.com named Keglar the riser of the draft.
"He came into the day as a seventh-rounder or free agent, so this is just a huge day for him," said Marshall, a former Bengals assistant who is training Keglar and several other draft picks at Ignition in Mason, Ohio. "A guy moving like that and doing the shuttles at 240 pounds, they just don't see that."
With the combine televised on NFL Network and computers spewing results instantaneously, guys like Marshall and analyst Jerry Jones, publisher of the draft survey The Drgugstore List got their fix immediately.
"We don't get NFL Network, but if you want to cheat you can get on NFL.com and watch them run 40s all day," said Jones, the former Cincinnati pharmacist now living in St. Simon Island, Ga.
Marshall also had high praise for another relative unknown, Kentucky linebacker Wesley Woodyard and his 4.51 40 and short shuttle time of 4.25 seconds. But there was a cringe for big name Sedrick Ellis and his 40 time of 5.25.
Not good and Bengals fans will hope that it will help drop Ellis, the USC defensive tackle, to No. 9, but it probably won't because he came in as a consensus top eight pick.
"A lot of these workout warriors can burn you; the combine isn't everything," said Jones, still stinging from Dan Wilkinson's great campus workout of '94.
Auburn defensive end Quentin Groves ran an impressive 4.57-second time in the 40, but his stock will most likely rise and fall in how the various teams interpret his skills in the linebacker drills.
The Long boys, Chris and Jake, secured their top five spots with outstanding workouts. Chris, the Virginia defensive end, proved he's more than an effort guy with a 4.75 40 and a brief 7.02 seconds in the pro agility. Jake, the Michigan left tackle, heaved 225 pounds 37 times. Arkansas running back Darren McFadden, with Sunday's 4.27 40, also established top status.
Jones also has Gholston, Ellis, Boston College quarterback Matt Ryan and Boise State tackle Ryan Clady going before the Bengals pick.
Jones' next defensive player is USC linebacker Keith Rivers.
Another Purdue linebacker, Landon Johnson, might be in his last week as a Bengal. Andy Simms, his agent, said Monday night that it looks like his client is headed to the market with no progress with the Bengals.
"We talked Sunday morning in Indy and things aren't cut off so we're still talking," Simms said. "That's just the way it's headed - to free agency."