Blue and Gold Illustrated

April 2020

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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36 APRIL 2020 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED BY ANDREW MENTOCK O ver the years, the NFL Scout- ing Combine has become a national spectacle that makes the NFL the talk of the sports world nearly a month after the Super Bowl. The 2020 NFL Combine was hosted from Sunday, Feb. 23 through Mon- day, March 2 in Indianapolis, with the workouts occurring over four straight days on Thursday through Sunday. In total, 337 players were invited. How an invitee performs at the Combine can have a significant im- pact on his NFL Draft stock and po- tentially make or break pro careers. Several former Notre Dame play- ers attended the combine this year and the results were mixed. 1. Chase Claypool Proves He Has The Speed To Play Receiver When Chase Claypool checked in at the NFL Combine, he measured 6-4ΒΌ and a whopping 238 pounds, which only fueled a narrative β€” which started at the Senior Bowl in January β€” that Claypool was better off playing tight end at the next level. His height and weight did make him roughly the same size as sev- eral of the tight ends in attendance at the Combine, but when it was Clay- pool's turn to work out, he demon- strated that he had the speed and agility to stick at wide receiver at the next level. Claypool kicked his workout off by running a blistering 4.42-second of- ficial time in the 40-yard dash, faster than all but six receivers in atten- dance β€” but none measured any- where close to 6-4 and 238 pounds. The lone wide receiver of a similar size and weight ever to run the 40- yard dash at that time or lower is for- mer Detroit Lions Pro Bowler Calvin Johnson, also known as Megatron. Johnson set the all-time record for the most receiving yards in a season with 1,964 in 2012 and is considered one of the best pass catchers of all time. "Any questions about Claypool's athleticism, burst or speed were an- swered in Indianapolis as he ran a 4.42 and did excellent across the board in testing to possibly consid- erably boost his draft stock moving forward," Rivals national recruiting analyst Adam Gorney noted. Claypool also showed well when it came to the bench press and verti- cal jump. In both events, he finished fourth in comparison to his fellow wide receivers. His combine performance is sim- ilar to that of former Notre Dame wide receiver Miles Boykin, a 6-4 pass catcher who shot up NFL Draft boards after also posting a 4.42-sec- ond 40 in 2019. Boykin ended up becoming a third-round pick by the Draft Stock riSing The top 10 Fighting Irish storylines from the 2020 NFL Combine Chase Claypool turned in an impressive performance at the NFL Combine, running the 40-yard dash in 4.42 seconds. The only wide receiver of a similar size and weight ever to run at that time or lower at the Combine is former Detroit Lions Pro Bowler Calvin "Megatron" Johnson. PHOTO BY ANDREW MENTOCK

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