The NFL scouting combine took place two weeks ago. At that event, four running backs, 14 receivers, one linebacker and three safeties ran better than a 4.5-second 40-yard dash. No defensive lineman ran better than 4.57, which is no surprise. Montee Ball and Giovani Bernard, two of the best running backs in the draft, ran it in 4.66 seconds and 4.53 seconds, respectively. Bernard was a fantastic punt returner for North Carolina last year as well.
Now take the information from the last two paragraphs, and process this little bit of news:
ESPN's Tom Rinaldi reported that #SouthCarolina DE Jadeveon Clowney ran a 4.5 40 at 270 pounds during the Gamecocks' recent winter workouts.
— Evan Silva (@evansilva) March 5, 2013
Is Jadeveon Clowney human? Do we have confirmation? Men that large should not run that fast.
It's mind boggling that Clowney had a faster reported 40 time than Bernard, who beat NC State with a 73-yard punt return in the final minute last year. Combine numbers are generally a bit slower than the school's records, and South Carolina might be pumping up its superstar a bit by telling Rinaldi that time, but we're willing to bet that the 4.5 number isn't too exaggerated, if at all. And consider that players who go to the combine practice for weeks with trainers on things like sprinting form, so they have an edge on Clowney there.
It's hard to find a better physical specimen in college football than Clowney. Good luck to the offensive linemen who have to block him this season.
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