Monday Live Blog: Michigan Wolverines At The NFL Combine
David Long was the only former Wolverine in action today, but he impressed while going through his drills.
The California native began the day by running a 4.45 40-yard dash, which was tied for eighth best among the cornerbacks.
He also impressed in his backpedal drills, hauled in all 14 passes in the gauntlet, and did not drop a single ball all day.
Long recorded a 39.5 in the vertical jump (tied for 19th among cornerbacks) and a 120 in the broad jump (tied for fourth).
All three NFL Network analysts — Daniel Jeremiah, Charles Davis and Deion Sanders — had high praise for the former Wolverine throughout the day.
"We got great reports on his offseason work," Davis explained. "He's real good on the board, is excellent at understanding concepts, and ran real well."
"He's mature, and I like the fact he can play both inside and outside," Jeremiah added. "That's not easy."
"He's my favorite now as he started to get his toes up," Sanders said during one of Long's backpedaling drills. "I like that! I want to find out who told him to put his toe up, because he's one of the few who did it."
The analyst then went over to Long after the drill and told him, "You turned around, stayed low, and threw the elbow back. I like that."
2:47 PM — During the Combine Today's mock draft section of their show, Zierlein tabbed Rashan Gary to the Detroit Lions at No. 8.
"He's a workout freak," the analyst said. "He has all kinds of potential, but needs to be cultivated and developed — all the ingredients are there and it's time to put them together. When you get a player with this kind of height, speed and weight with these traits, you take him at No. 8 and it's kind of an easy pick.
"It would make a ton of sense if he's still there."
2:31 PM — Lance Zierlein of the Combine Today postgame show named Devin Bush as one of the players who stood out to him during the entire event.
"His workout was a good one," the analyst said. "He measured in at 5-11, which is inside the range of an inside linebacker, and 234 pounds is in that range as well. That number right there — along with his weight — was a big one for him, because he ran a 4.43 and jumped out of the gym.
"His numbers were good across the board. I originally thought he was a second round linebacker and thought he'd be around 228 pounds, so I think it was a big deal for him to run and work out the way he did at 234 pounds. The tape measure was kind enough to him, and he may slide into the late first round."
1:15 PM — Long showed his appreciation for being invited to the NFL combine on twitter:
Best performances from Group 1 DBs (no order):— Dion Caputi (@nfldraftupdate) March 4, 2019
• Julian Love, @NDFootball
• Sean Bunting, @CMU_Football
• Byron Murphy, @UW_Football
• Mark Fields, @ClemsonFB
• David Long, @UMichFootball
Otherwise, an okay group with others who did some nice things.#NFLCombine
12:07 PM — Charles Davis used his "Best Choice (Presented by Golden Corral)" pick on Long.
"He had a nice backpedal, turn, and got straight down the line," the analyst explained. "I thought he had a nice morning with his movement skills and being able to operate.
"Seeing his body of work at Michigan, it'll be interesting to see where they want to play him in the NFL. With his body type, maybe they'll want to play him inside as well."
"We're seeing great talent come out of Michigan, and they're also well-coached and they take to coaching well."
"It was a solid day for David Long, and really the whole Michigan program," Jeremiah added. "They should be proud of what they've done here at the combine.
"We saw Devin Bush, Rashan Gary put on his show, and now David Long."
11:54 AM — The U-M cornerback once again impresses in the gauntlet drill, reeling in all seven passes flawlessly.
11:46 AM — Long looks smooth hauling in all seven short passes in the rapid fire gauntlet drill.
He caught all seven balls cleanly and did not bobble any of them.
11:37 AM — "I don't like to see guys backpedal without moving their arms," Sanders observes as Long keeps his arms locked in place during a backpedaling drill.
"You have to move your arms when you backpedal."
11:29 AM — Long once again efficiently backpedals and surges forward during the three-cone drill, before bobbling — but securing — the six-yard pass at the end.
11:22 AM — The former U-M cornerback cleanly backpedals between all the cones on the three-cone drill and hauls in a short pass at the end, with Sanders advising him to "keep his chin down" on it.
11:13 AM — Long cleanly hauls in a 30-yard pass, with Sanders noting how he did a good job of "high-pointing the ball."
The California native jogged as he was finishing up the drill, though, with Sanders giving a "come on, come on" on air in hopes that he would've hustled at the end.
10:54 AM — "He looked awfully quick going through things," Davis observed when Long ran through a deep backpedal drill before hauling in a 40-yard pass. "He looked pretty smooth in his turns."
"Long is definitely smooth on his turns," Sanders concurred. "He needs more depth though, in that he needs to gain more ground on his backpedal."
10:33 AM — "He's [Long] been one of my favorites so far," Davis said, after the cornerback impressed in the backpedal drill.
"He's my favorite now as he started to get his toes up," Sanders added. "I like that! I want to find out who told him to put his toe up, because he's one of the few who did it."
"It must be coaching," NFL Network host Rich Eisen — a Michigan alum — chimed in.
Sanders was so impressed with Long's technique, that he immediately went over to him while on-air.
"You're one of the few who started with the toe up — who taught you how to do that?" Sanders asked Long. "You did it right."
"My high school coach," Long responded. "It's a pleasure to meet you."
"Thank you," the NFL Network analyst said. "You also turned around, stayed low, and threw the elbow back. I like that."
10:10 AM — Long registers a 4.46 40 in his second attempt., and all three analysts — Daniel Jeremiah, Charles Davis and Deion Sanders — immediately chimed in on how impressed they were with the California native.
"The reports I get about him are outstanding," Davis exclaimed. "Every box is checked with him."
"It's been a good combine for Michigan," Jeremiah added. "He's mature, and I like the fact he can play both inside and outside. That's not easy."
"That's saying a lot," Sanders said, referring to Long's ability to play both inside and out. "I couldn't do it. You can't guess in the slot and you have to be on it, because you're involved in so many things — the run game, the curl flat, the hook curl … there are so many different things you have to do there."
9:36 AM — David Long runs a 4.47 40-yard dash in his first attempt.
"We got great reports on his offseason work," Charles Davis explained. "He's real good on the board, is excellent at understanding concepts, and just ran real well."
9:03 AM — NFL Network analyst Charles Davis was also asked about his takeaways from yesterday, and defensive end Rashan Gary was the second name he brought up (behind Alabama defensive tackle Quinnen Williams).
"People want to ding him for so-called lack of production and a lack of numbers at Michigan, and he's heard it," Davis noted. "He has showed everybody, 'Don't worry about that part, because I can flat-out play.' Look at the speed, quickness and strength as he goes through his drills."
9:03 AM — NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah began the day by revealing his biggest takeaways from Sunday, and one of them involved linebacker Devin Bush.
"Coming into the combine, I thought LSU's Devin White might separate himself from Devin Bush because of the athleticism," he explained. "That did not happen. Bush answered the call and ran in the 4.4s, and went through the drills very smooth. That will be a fun competition at the linebacker spot."
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