One of the best parts of covering the NFL scouting combine is being able to go inside Lucas Oil Stadium during the Sunday throwing drills for quarterbacks and receivers, take notes on what you see for assigned players, and write a pool report on those players and how they do in their drills. For the first session, I was assigned three receivers - Julio Jones, Randall Cobb, and Greg Little. Here's that report; I just got back from the second session, where I picked up observations on Auburn's Cam Newton and Maryland receiver Torrey Smith. I'll be sharing those later.
Scouting Combine Pool Report - Group 1 (Morning)
Doug Farrar, Yahoo! Sports
#20 - Julio Jones, Alabama
Dropped a well-thrown ball on the seam route, but kept his eyes up and trailed the ball very well. Good speed to cover ground under the ball on longer routes. Jones ran a very good gauntlet; he has a great sense of functional speed and how quick he needs to be in short spaces. He's not frantic when he needs to be quick, and he caught the balls and got them out in good time. Clean cut on the slant - good hands. Looked good on the quick out; the cut was okay, not great. Had good pace in the 6-route but was overthrown by Ryan Mallett.
Pretty smooth on the second out route - he doesn't always run really sharp cuts, but he's very smooth on the ground. Looked great on the post corner - very good cuts and speed. The second post-corner may have been the best route anyone ran in the group - very sharp cuts and extremely sudden in his short-area movements.
#7 - Randall Cobb, Kentucky
He got overthrown on the seam, but good inline speed and he keeps his eye on the ball - he's not all over the place with his body on his routes like some other receivers. He's a little too quick/frantic in the gauntlet (one drop), but he got better on the quick (5-yard) out, though he tends to round off his cuts at times. Looked good on the 6-route. Took in a very nice throw from Colin Kaepernick on the 9-route. Focused so much on the cut on the second quick out, he couldn't keep his eye on the ball. Good turn and catch on the curl route, and he trailed the ball very well on the post corner.
#22 - Greg Little, North Carolina
Little can run any route, but he has to slow down to make certain cuts. Looked good on the gauntlet, though he was slow - took his time and progressed well. Good sideline sense - kept his hands out to bring the ball in on a badly thrown pass while tapping his feet inside the sideline. Very sloppy on the five-yard out - ran it more as a slant and couldn't make a clean cut. Had an overthrow from Andy Dalton on another out. Looked nice on the 6-route - good cuts and build-up speed. Had decent form on the curl, but again, had to slow down to do it. Below-average form on the post-corner - rounded off on both cones.