Andrew Weber-USA TODAY Sports
Aaron Donald, Pittsburgh (6’1, 285) – This guy can do no wrong right now. Donald put up an impressive 35 bench reps, which was 2nd among defensive lineman. Judging from Donald’s tape, he’s going to have a very impressive 10 yard split in the 40 on day 5 and his stock will continue to rise. Donald to the Bears with the 14th pick is looking better and better to me.
Re’Shede Hageman, Minnesota (6’6, 310) – He was rumored to be able to do 40 bench press reps so 32 is a bit disappointing, but when you consider that he has 34 1/2″ arms, it’s pretty darn impressive. Hageman is a workout warrior and should do very well in all the athletic drills, which will lock up a 1st round draft slot.
Stephen Tuiit, Notre Dame (6’5, 304) – His arms are even longer (34 3/4″) then Hageman’s and Tuitt was able to put up 31 reps on the bench. Tuitt is in the running to be the next DE selected after Clowney and his impressive show off strength on the bench is a good start.
Cassius Marsh, UCLA (6’4, 252) – I had Marsh being drafted by the Bears in the 5th round, but after finishing last among defensive linemen with only 14 reps on the bench he’s going to drop a bit in my next mock.
Michael Sam, Missouri (6’2, 261) – The average number of bench reps for defensive lineman at last year’s combine was 24. Sam could only do 17 reps. The last two weeks have been pretty crazy for Sam, so it’s possible he didn’t have time to train much lately but 17 is way below average. Sam will have to get considerably stronger if he is going to play defensive end in the NFL.
Jadeveon Clowney, South Carolina (6’5, 266) – For a guy who claimed he was going to dominate the combine, Clowney is off to a rough start. His 21 reps were three below the average last year. For a frame of reference, Jay Cutler did 23 bench reps at the combine.