Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

25 Feb 2010

ESPN: Debunking Combine Myths

Our ESPN feature this week is on five Combine myths, covering everything from Mike Mamula's status as the preeminent "Workout Warrior" bust to the hand size of wide receivers.

Posted by: Bill Barnwell on 25 Feb 2010

6 comments, Last at 26 Feb 2010, 10:25am by MilkmanDanimal


by drobviousso :: Thu, 02/25/2010 - 3:08pm

Three of the four comments over there are reasonable and rational. All four are written in, if not the King's English, at least passable enough to be governor of a large state.

You should frame them.

by Omroth :: Fri, 02/26/2010 - 8:13am

If Bill's framing comments, I'm pretty sure this would be the one:

"John Clayton is their Tyler Derden."

That's someone mistaking Bill Barnwell for John Clayton and then calling him ESPN's "Tyler Derden". Sometimes when the internet wins, everyone wins.

by hismjh (not verified) :: Thu, 02/25/2010 - 11:15pm

Thank you for debunking the Mike Mamula myth, and pointing out how good he was at BC. But I don't think you have the whole story. Mamula only went about 250 pounds at BC, and before the combine many thought he wouldn't go in the first few rounds, because of concerns that he was too small to be an every-down defensive end in the NFL. That he was a tweener, in other words. By acing the combine, Mamula convinced teams that he could be an every-down DE, despite his size. I always wondered if he would have been better off drafted in the middle rounds, where a team could have used him as a situational pass rusher rather than have him face the pounding of being an every down player. I think it's fair to consider that his lack of size contributed to his inability to stay on the field.

So I'd say Mamula is a legitimate cautionary tale, just not the cautionary tale of "poor college player who impresses as a workout warrior." Mamula wasn't just a good college player, he was a great one.

by tuluse :: Fri, 02/26/2010 - 8:11am

Sounds like he should have played OLB in a 3-4.

Or been born 5years later so he could have played on the Colts in their no such thing as too small defense.

by Pete (not verified) :: Fri, 02/26/2010 - 10:23am

I think someone at ESPN needs some help with fractions.

by MilkmanDanimal :: Fri, 02/26/2010 - 10:25am

Instead of just leaving Mike Mamula alone, this means we can start making fun of Vernon Gholston now instead, right?