Isaiah Simmons Steals the Show at NFL Combine
Simmons recorded a 4.39-second 40, the second-best time of any linebacker since 2003
At the NFL combine in Indianapolis, no player stood out more than Clemson linebacker Isaiah Simmons.
Though he skipped positional workouts, Simmons did take part in athletic testing drills and stole the show.
Along with a 39-inch vertical leap and 11-0 broad jump, the reigning ACC defensive player of the year recorded a 4.39-second 40, the second-best time of any linebacker since 2003.
If that time doesn’t immediately sound all that impressive, consider that Simmons‘s 4.39 40 time was faster than star NFL running backs Christian McCaffrey, Saquon Barkley, Ezekiel Elliott and Alvin Kamara, as well as a number of other elite NFL players.
Isaiah Simmons is just differentpic.twitter.com/53ktaS4p6C
— PFF (@PFF) March 1, 2020
Measuring in at 6-4 and 238 pounds, Simmons had 89 tackles (nine for loss), seven pass breakups, three forced fumbles and one interception returned for a touchdown for Clemson last season. As a junior, his play earned him the Butkus Award as the nation’s top linebacker.
“Ascending hybrid talent with rare length, speed and versatility to create mismatches for the offense, depending upon alignment,” NFL draft analyst Lance Zierlein says of Simmons. “He has a bachelor’s at three positions (slot corner, safety, linebacker) but could earn a master’s degree in complex workload with a more focused and defined job description than “jack-of-all-trades.” He can handle zone or man coverage from a variety of spots on the field, which gives defensive coordinators a chance to disguise blitz packages and exotic post-snap looks.”
Linebacker. Edge rusher. Safety. Cornerback.
— NFL (@NFL) March 1, 2020
At this point, there’s no way to know where Simmons will be drafted, but the consensus seems to be that his performance in Indianapolis has vaulted him into consideration for one of the top five picks.
We’ll see when the first round of the draft kicks off on April 23.
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