It was a time for defense in college this year with future superstars Patrick Peterson, Daquan Bowers, Von Miller and Nick Fairley carrying the headlines. The #1 projected pick of a year ago in Robert Quinn didn't play a snap and he's still in the top 8 projected picks. As of two days ago, there wasn't an offensive player at this year's NFL combine whom I was interested in using the #7 pick on.
Then Julio Jones stepped up. Nobody knew anything was amiss. And it certainly didn't seem there was as Julio fell about 1 notch short of putting on a performance for the ages. Speed concerns? "Have this 4.39. " AJ Green is the jump ball receiver in this draft? "I'm a little heavier but I'll still jump 4" higher at 38 1/2" How can that be topped off? "I'll put down a near record in the broad jump."
Julio straight WENT OFF. He outperformed his doubters in just about every way possible. (He also displayed good hands in the only positional drill I saw.) His performance exceeded my expectations in everything except vertical leap... And then word broke today that Julio had gone and had a screw surgically inserted to fix a fracture in his foot this morning. He dropped the whole workout on a fractured foot. I knew he played through injuries in big games at Alabama but to come out at the combine and then just annihilate the competition while hurt is extraordinary.
There is now an offensive player I can support taking at 7 assuming PP and Quinn are off the board. Julio Jones is going to be a stud. The only question is whether it will be for the Niners.