Even though there are more prospects invited to the yearly scouting combine than there are draft slots, there are always players not invited who feel like they should be in Indianapolis. That’s true for the 2024 NFL Scouting Combine, which begins the final week in February.
The league invited 321 prospects to the annual event, the biggest week on the NFL’s offseason calendar. The full list of 321 prospects who were invited to Indianapolis is available via NFL.com.
It’s tough to find some snubs at a few positions without bit nitpicky, but there are some worthy candidates to be drafted in April who won’t be at the combine in Indianapolis. Here’s the biggest snub at each position group.
QB: Carter Bradley, South Alabama
Bradley, the son of longtime NFL coach Gus Bradley, had a very nice Senior Bowl week. For my money he was the best quarterback on the American roster, displaying arm strength, intermediate-range accuracy and the ability to escape trouble.
The transfer from Toledo looks like a priority UDFA with some developmental upside for a team that can teach him consistent footwork and touch on his throws.
RB: Carson Steele, UCLA
Steele made the annual Bruce Feldman “freaks” list entering the year,
Steele, at 6-1, 233, has wowed his new teammates with his strength. He bench-pressed 450 pounds and squatted 685. His wheels have been impressive too, clocking 20.96 MPH and vertical-jumping 35 inches.
While he wasn’t quite as productive in a shared role at UCLA as he was as the feature back at Ball State, Steele still did a good job at forcing missed tackles and maximizing what’s blocked for him. I’d consider Steele one of the early favorites to be Mr. Irrelevant, the final player drafted. But he won’t be in Indy.
Victor is another snub that’s easy to understand why he didn’t get an invite. He’s small at 5-foot-9 and a listed 177 pounds that might be generous — a slot-only receiver that ran a limited route tree for the Cougars.
I still like his chances to fill that niche role in the NFL while also adding in return specialist ability. He was reliably open quickly for the Cougars and was also a surprisingly good pound-for-pound blocker in the run game. A handful of mindless drops probably cost Victor any chance of being drafted, but there’s some legit upside there that might have come out in Indy.
TE: Mason Pline, Furman
It’s pretty easy to see why Pline wasn’t invited, aside from the fact we don’t have a single picture of him playing college football. Playing TE at an FCS school that doesn’t throw to the tight end a lot breeds obscurity. However, he’s a player who could have made himself a lot of fans in Indianapolis.
Pline began as a basketball player for D-II Ferris State before switching to football for the 2-time national champs. He’s 6-foot-7, 260 pounds and has easy athleticism and explosiveness. Pline showed it off during Hula Bowl week and then the Shrine Bowl, where he earned a promotion from the prior week.
OL: Travis Glover, Georgia State
A 6-foot-6 tackle with good power and an aggressive attitude on the outside, Glover proved his worth as a Senior Bowl call-up. He’s got experience at both guard and tackle and handled himself well in big-game tests against LSU and North Carolina in the last two autumns.
Glover needs some work on his technique and consistency, no doubt. It would have been nice for teams to see his athletic upside on display at the combine.
DL: Grayson Murphy, UCLA
How’s this for a snub…
The NFL invited UCLA pass rusher Gabriel Murphy to the combine, but his twin brother and teammate Grayson did not. And while Gabriel was the more productive collegian, Grayson showed enough ability and production to also merit a deeper look from the scouts.
LB: Jackson Sirmon, California
Sirmon likely suffered from missing half of the 2023 season for the Golden Bears with an injury. He’s also an older prospect, turning 24 in April after playing six CFB seasons between Washington and Cal.
That said, Sirmon has legit coverage skills and has proven to be a reliable open-field tackler across his college career. He played very well in team drills at the Senior Bowl, also showing leadership and positional discipline.
CB: Beanie Bishop, West Virginia
Bishop transferred from Minnesota to West Virginia for his final college season, and he acclimated well enough to earn All-American status. The scrappy Bishop led the nation in passes defended, including four interceptions.
While he lacks the desired size (listed 5-10/184) to stick on the outside full-time like how the Mountaineers used him, Bishop proved at Minnesota he was capable in the slot or a hybrid role. DBs with ball skills like Bishop and unflappable confidence don’t grow on trees.
Safety: Mark Perry, TCU
Back when Perry was announced as a Shrine Bowl participant, I wrote this about the physically imposing Horned Frog,
One of the top candidates for the fastest player in the draft has also committed. TCU safety Mark Perry, a former Pac-12 100m sprint champion at Colorado while also playing football, can absolutely fly to the point of attack. Perry is a productive tackler who aggressively attacks the run and short passes, and is generally regarded as a late-round prospect at this point.
Perry would be my early prediction for the highest-drafted defensive player not at the combine.