The 2019 NFL draft combine is in the books, and a lot of players helped or hurt their draft status with their performances at the league gathering. One of the most important events at the combine is the 40-yard dash. A good (or great) time can turn a fringe second-round player into a guaranteed top-15 pick, but a slow time can send players plummeting down teams’ draft boards. With the NFL draft approaching, let’s look at the fastest 40-yard dash times at the 2019 combine.
5 (tie). D.K. Metcalf (WR — Ole Miss); Mecole Hardman (WR — Georgia), 4.33 seconds
Two speedsters out of the SEC come in tied for the fifth fastest time at the combine. Many view Metcalf as a top-10 pick, after hauling in 14 career touchdowns and averaging over 18 yards per reception for his career at Ole Miss.
Mecole Hardman was also a burner for the Bulldogs, and improved on his 2017 numbers with seven touchdown grabs and averaged over 16 yards per catch in 2018.
3 (tie). Parris Campbell (WR — Ohio State); Andy Isabella (WR — Massachusetts), 4.31 seconds
Andy Isabella seemingly came out of nowhere at the NFL Combine. He was a very productive receiver for the Minutemen, as they have grown from an FCS power into a capable independent FBS team.
Isabella finished his career with back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons and caught at least 60 passes in each of his three seasons as a starter. He could be a potential Day 2 sleeper, and he should be a major target for both Bill Belichick and Andy Reid, as both coaches like small, fast guys as weapons on their offense.
Parris Campbell was one of the bright spots on the outside for the Buckeyes’ offense, helping Dwayne Haskins finish the 2018 season with one of the best showings for a quarterback in Big Ten history. He has always been elusive, and he is a threat to find the end zone if he gets his hands on the ball. Campbell caught 90 passes and 12 touchdowns in 2018 and could be an early Day 2 selection.
2. Jamel Dean (CB — Auburn), 4.30 seconds
Auburn struggled at times this year on the defensive side of the ball, but Jamel Dean wasn’t one of the reasons for it. He finished 2018 with 30 tackles and nine pass breakups, utilizing his speed to catch up when beaten deep by receivers. He could be a third-round pick if he fits a team’s system, but fans should expect him to end up in the fourth to the sixth round range.
1. Zedrick Woods (S — Ole Miss), 4.29 seconds
With potential roster spots on the line, Woods turned in two amazing 40-yard dash times. His first time of 4.37 was very good for a safety, and he turned it around with an even better 4.30 for his second attempt. In the end, his unofficial time checked in at 4.29 seconds. He was very good for Ole Miss in 2018, finishing the year with 79 tackles, four pass breakups, and a defensive touchdown.
Woods’ time improved his draft stock. Once a fringe pick, he should hear his name called on Day 3 as a potential fifth-round pick. He could be used in a number of defensive schemes and as a special teams ace for teams around the league.
Who would you want on your team from this list?
Going over the six players with the fastest 40-yard dash times at this year’s NFL Combine, who would you like to see suit up for your team? As a general manager, would you prefer speed on offense or defense?