49ers Blog and Q&A

News, notes and reader questions about the San Francisco 49ers

March 12, 2008
Hawkins improves 40 time, draft stock

Receiver Lavelle Hawkins ran a 4.47 and a 4.49 at yesterday’s pro day workout at Cal, a nice improvement from his 40-time at last month’s combine. Hawkins, of course, really stood out at the Senior Bowl in January, catching every pass that was thrown his way, including several deep throws in which he out-wrestled defenders for the ball. Hawkins certainly isn’t blazing fast like teammate DeSean Jackson (who rested on his combine numbers), but he has excellent body control and good hand-eye coordination. He also isn’t afraid to catch passes across the middle of the field.

The buzz around Hawkins died down a bit last month when he ran a pedestrian 4.56 in the 40, a number that was beaten by several 240-plus pound linebackers. Running in the 4.4-range ought to put him back in the second- to third-round range as far as next month’s draft. The bad news for Hawkins (and the good news for NFL teams) is that there are an abundance of receivers bunched together in that range.

More bad news for my guy Carl Nicks. That massive kegger that Nicks and few of his teammates attended Saturday night in Lincoln, Neb. now has cost Nicks, an aspiring right tackle, a chance to perform at today’s pro day in Lincoln. Cornhusker head coach Bo Pelini said Nicks was banned from the event and banned from being around the program in general because he has set a poor example with his bad behavior. I wrote about the incident in question yesterday. For the next month at least, all draft hopefuls should follow the old and accurate NFL adage: Nothing good happens after (or in this case around) midnight.

-- Matt Barrows


Matt was born in Blacksburg, Va., and attended the University of Virginia. He graduated in 1995, went to Northwestern for a journalism degree a year later, and got his first job at a South Carolina daily in 1997. He joined The Bee as a Metro reporter in 1999 and started covering the 49ers in 2003. His favorite player of all time is Darrell Green.


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