NORMAN, Okla. — All eyes were on Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield on Wednesday, but he didn’t have the most to prove as the Sooners conducted their Pro Day for NFL scouts at the Switzer Center.
Offensive tackle Orlando Brown knew he had to prove that his disastrous performance at the NFL Combine two weeks ago was merely a bad day in a collegiate career that featured many good ones.
“I was disappointed in what I did at the combine. Like I said before, those were numbers that were low for me,” Brown said on Wednesday. “During my preparation, during my training, I was running a 5.6, I was benching 18 to 20 consistently. Coming out there at the combine, my mentality, the bench happening, it just snowballed.”
Brown did have a better day on Wednesday. He dropped his 40-yard dash time from 5.8 seconds to 5.63. He added 7 inches to broad jump at 89 inches and increased his vertical jump by 6 inches to 25.5 inches.
— John Shinn (@john_shinn) March 14, 2018
Is it enough to erase the memories of his performance at the NFL Combine? Who knows.
Two weeks ago, Brown was considered a likely first-round pick. He was a unanimous first-team All-American last season and the son of a former NFL offensive lineman, the late Zeus Brown.
But even Brown understood his performance on the field would be better than the measurements from it. But no one expected for it to be as bad as it was the NFL Combine.
Even his mentor, former Outland Trophy winner at Oklahoma and NFL veteran Jammal Brown was stunned.
“I just wanted to know what happened because I saw him put up better numbers and do something a lot similar to what he did today,” Jammal Brown said. “To go to the combine on the biggest stage and not show what you can do, it’s tough.”
Brown’s NFL Combine performance was a like a nightmare. Brown only did 14 reps on the 225-pound bench press, which about 6 less than he expected. It went downhill from there.
Wednesday was a different story.
“I’ve been running a 5.6 consistently. I’ve been 18 to 20. This is before the combine. I’ve been jumping 7-5, 7-4. My vertical was a 23, 24, so when I went to the combine, my bench press didn’t go well because I got away from my breathing technique,” Brown said. “From there, it just kind of snowballed on me. My mentality was messed up. I’m the type of person, I’ve had bad plays but I bounce back. It shows up on film.”
There were more 60 NFL coaches, scouts and general managers in attendance on Wednesday. They all got an up-close look at Brown and 18 other former Oklahoma players on Saturday.
Baker Mayfield makes all the throws
Mayfield drew the most attention. The NFL Network and ESPN were both on hand and carried some of it live. Mayfield is contention to be the first quarterback selected when the NFL Draft begins on April 26 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
All Mayfield did was throw for about 20 minutes to draft-eligible receivers Jeffrey Mead, Jeff Badet, tight end Mark Andrews, fullback Dimitri Flowers and former Oklahoma receiver Jarvis Baxter.
Mayfield had a simple goal.
“That I can make all the throws,” he said. “I thought at the combine that a couple deep balls I left short. I think today I made the correction. Timing routes and out routes, when you throw with guys infrequently that can mess with the time. I think I did that today.”
Among those attending for Mayfield’s throwing session were Denver Broncos president John Elway and Denver coach Vance Joseph. Cincinnati Bengals coach Marvin Lewis was also on hand. There were representatives of every team who turned out.
The spotlight on Mayfield helps everyone when trying to draw the attention of NFL teams.
“Baker draws so much attention and it’s great for everybody here to have that sort of notoriety because not everyone in the country is going to get that,” Andrews said. “It’s one of the benefits of being here at Oklahoma.”
Jeff Badet has a big day
Badet transferred to Oklahoma after graduating from Kentucky with the goal of improving his NFL draft stock. After a season with 26 receptions and 3 touchdowns, he didn’t create much of a buzz. He wasn’t invited to the NFL Combine.
It might have been different if the teams knew he could run like he did on Wednesday. The wide receiver posted a 40-yard dash time of 4.27 seconds, which was faster than any time at the NFL Combine.
“This is a day I’ve been waiting on for a long time. I got a chance to sit down and watch the Combine and see the type of numbers the receivers were putting up. I knew I had to come out and try to beat every single last one of them because I felt like I should have had the invite,” Badet said. “It’s all cool because it gave me more time to put up better numbers.”
Badet had one of the strangest starts to the day you’ll ever witness. Oklahoma’s Pro Day always begins with the players being measured and weighed. After taking a measurement of Badet’s left hand, the NFL representative called out “deformed left pinky!”
The receiver was stunned.
“I don’t have a deformed pinky. I don’t know where that came from,” Badet said. “It’s just that my pinky shoots out and is longer than my right arm. I don’t have a deformed – I don’t know why he said that. I had so many messages off that. What’s wrong with your pinky? Nothing’s wrong with it.”
— John Shinn (@john_shinn) March 14, 2018
Du’Vonta Lampkin shows size, power and surprising speed
Lampkin stunned Oklahoma when he declared for the NFL Draft after his redshirt sophomore season. He didn’t show NFL production during his two seasons on the field. Lampkin did not receive an NFL Combine invite.
However, Lampkin has pro ability. He weighed in at 345 pounds on Wednesday. The defensive lineman ran the 40-yard dash in 5.08 seconds and bench pressed 225 pounds 31 times.
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