The combine provided many moments to see what the crop of prospects this year has to offer. On the defensive side of things, there were some memorable performances, as well as some duds. Here are some winners and losers from the 2015 NFL Scouting Combine.
CB Trae Waynes, Michigan State: Going into the combine, Waynes was already considered to be the best corner in the class, and he did nothing to hurt that claim. Running a position best 4.31 forty, the former Spartan also performed at a high level during the drill portion.
CB Josh Shaw, USC: Shaw put up a cornerback high 26 bench reps, and flashed better than expected speed with a 4.44 forty.
DE Bud Dupree, Kentucky: At 6'4" 269 lbs, Dupree ran an excellent 4.56 forty. He then posted a 42 inch vertical. Crazy numbers for a guy as big as him. Unfortunately, Dupree hurt his groin and didn't get to the drill portion. He did enough to see his draft stock go up.
CB Byron Jones, UConn: Out of anyone, Jones may have shot up the most on draft boards. Jones posted an incredible broad jump of 12 feet 3 inches, which is a combine record. His performance was off the charts in other areas as well, with a combine best 10.98 sixty yard shuttle, and second best vertical jump overall at 44.5 inches. It is safe to say Jones is a freak athlete.
CB Ronald Darby, Florida State: Darby had a forty time of 4.38 and performed very well in the drill portion. He's smooth.
OLB Vic Beasley, Clemson: Beasley was a top performer at his position in all categories this week. Posting a 4.53 forty. 35 bench press reps, and a vertical of 41 inches. He should be one of the first pass rushers off the board.
CB Senquez Golson, Mississippi: Deion Sanders called him a "banger" during the telecast, and I agree. His footwork, awareness, and speed were all on display. Golson could be a sneaky riser from now until the draft. I liked his ball skills, how he performed in the gauntlet drill, and overall he was one of my favorites to watch throughout the week.
CB Ladarius Gunter, Miami: A corner expected to go in the early rounds, Gunter put together a performance to forget. His footwork was bad, which lead to bad straight-line and change of direction speed. He dropped a lot of balls too during every drill portion. Many corners leap-frogged him.
LB Paul Dawson, TCU: Dawson had a great season for TCU, but a pretty dreadful combine. Coming in he was considered the top linebacker prospect. Leaving Indy I don't think that is the case. A 4.93 forty time will scare teams off, and he looked slow in drills as well.
CB Marcus Peters, Washington: A 4.53 forty time for a 5'11" corner isn't ideal. Peters hasn't played a game since November and his skills looked very rusty. He is another guy that came in as a top ten corner in the draft and saw his stock fall for the time being.
LB Shaq Thompson, Washington: Shaq did nothing to warrant the hype surrounding him. He's versatile in theory, because he played safety, linebacker, and running back last season. The reality is many linebackers looked better than him at the combine. Thompson didn't look bad, he just looked okay. Nothing about his performance made me feel like he is a first round pick.
Who were your winners and losers on defense? Did you see anyone that caught your eye?