INDIANAPOLIS — D.K. Metcalf could see their eyes grow wide when he stepped in the room.
It didn't matter the day or the team, the response was still the same — a mixture of curiosity, intrigue and a touch of skepticism.
Could it be?
Within seconds of the introductions, however, everyone in the room could see the truth about Metcalf. And only one word was needed.
“‘Wow.’ That’s pretty much all they’ve got to say,” the Ole Miss wide receiver said in a sitdown interview with Yahoo Sports.
“Like, ‘Wow. You really are that big.”
Metcalf’s freakish physique went viral after shirtless photos recently surfaced on social media and the fascination with his chiseled 6-foot-3, 228-pound frame only intensified after he bench-pressed 225 pounds 27 times and was told he has 1.9 percent body fat.
“After I did it twice, the woman was like, ‘No, we have to do it again. ‘It says you’re too lean.’ And she was like, 'Yup, you're lean.'”
But Metcalf, a potential early round pick on the first or second day of next month’s draft, arrived at the NFL scouting combine determined to show off something more than just his muscles. He set out to embarrass his doubters and to prove he’s the best receiver in this year’s draft class.
And on Saturday, the former Rebel pass-catcher did just that, continuing an already impressive week with unofficial 40-yard dash times of 4.33 and 4.38 seconds.
“A lot of people think I can’t bend or get in and out of breaks,” he said a day before he flashed his impressive speed. “There’s a lot of knocks on tall people but it helps that I can go out there and bench 27 reps. I can squat a lot. I can bench a lot. I’m powerful. I try not to look at myself as a big person. I’m 6-4, but I can get in and out of breaks like I’m 5-9.
“I can’t wait to run routes tomorrow,” he confidently added. “Just to give them a first-hand look that I can get in and out of breaks. I’m just a big receiver.”
Metcalf insisted he didn’t feel any added pressure heading into Saturday’s drills. Instead, he viewed it as a chance to finally dispel all the doubts about his body type.
“They can talk all they want. I know myself,” said Metcalf, who had 569 receiving yards and five touchdowns on 26 catches last year before his season was curtailed by a neck injury. “… I’m just going to go out there and be me.”
While some may knock his linebacker-like size, the imposing receiver has turned plenty of heads in Indianapolis.
“He looked like Jim Brown,” Oakland Raiders head coach Jon Gruden said this week. “He’s the biggest wideout I’ve ever seen. You have to ask yourself, who is tackling this guy? So, if you’re a 175-pound corner and you’re tackling a 235-pound back or a 230-pound wideout or a tight end, you have to ask yourself: ‘Is this what I want to do?’”
Told of Gruden’s high praise and Brown comparison, Metcalf told Yahoo Sports: “It’s just a blessing just to have him recognize me in that aspect. That just goes to prove how much hard work I’ve put in but you can’t listen to all of the outside noise, you’ve still got to keep your head down and continue to be the person that you are and continue to work.”
While he greatly appreciated his name being mentioned alongside a Hall of Famer, Metcalf purposely avoids drawing his own comparisons to other receivers.
Asked why, he matter-of-factly replied: “Because then they’re going to be looking for me to do him numbers. I don’t like to compare myself to anybody because I’m me, and nobody’s seen me yet.”
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