Gentler Hurricanes

Charles Robinson

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It lacked the typical draft-pick bonanza of past years, but the University of Miami pro day still was heavily attended Saturday.

Every NFL team was accounted for, as usual, and one AFC personnel source said there appeared to be upwards of 100 onlookers for what has been one of the crown jewels of scouting in the last few years. But this year's crop of talent from the Hurricanes is expected to be much like last season's, which produced five draft picks but only one first-rounder in cornerback Antrel Rolle. That was a far cry from 2001 to 2004, a four-year span that produced a whopping 19 first-round picks.

"This year is more in line with [the 2005 draft] in terms of quality," the source said. "There are a lot of good players, but the abundance of first-round guys isn't there like it has been. The overall abundance is good. If you're talking about going all the way into round seven, there might be 10 draft picks. I think there's going to be at least one or maybe two [first-rounders] out of the group. You don't have that many people show up if there isn't at least one player worth [a first-round pick]."

The most likely candidates to go in Round 1 are tackle Eric Winston, cornerback Kelly Jennings and wide receiver Sinorice Moss, who have all impressed at some point – either Saturday or at last month's scouting combine.

With that in mind, here is the breakdown of several key players according to one personnel man's perspective Saturday:

  • Offensive tackle Eric Winston's draft stock likely didn't change. He didn't run but did some good work at his position and put up 22 reps in the bench press (which is about average considering his arm length). He's still likely to be a late first- to middle second-round pick.
  • Wide receiver Sinorice Moss had a nice vertical of 42 inches and showed some lower-body pop with a big long jump. He's got some explosion. Combined with his good overall showing at the combine and fast 40-yard dash (4.38), he has kept his hopes alive as a possible late first-round pick but likely will be a second-rounder.
  • Defensive tackle Orien Harris didn't help himself. Harris was clocked anywhere from 5.28 to 5.37 in the 40-yard dash. He didn't participate in the bench press but looked average for a defensive tackle in agility drills. He's quicker than fast, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. He's still a first-day pick, but it wouldn't be surprising to see Harris slip to the third round.
  • Linebacker Roger McIntosh had a mediocre performance. He ran his 40-yard dash in the mid 4.6s and looked a little sluggish in the agility and quickness drills. He looks like a second- or third-round pick.
  • Cornerback Kelly Jennings didn't run the 40 (he posted a 4.39 at the combine), but he looked quick in the short shuttle. He put up average times in the long shuttle and cone drills for a defensive back. He's a second-round pick.
  • Return specialist Devin Hester ran in the mid-4.3s in the 40-yard dash, and showed impressive quickness and agility in the cone drills. He's a late second- to middle third-round pick.

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