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February 22, 2009
Combine: Harvin, Orakpo numbers solid, not dazzling

You know you're watching too much combine when you can accurately call out a player's 40 time before the time flashes on your TV screen. That was me this morning, calling out "Oooh, 4.37" as Virginia's Kevin Ogletree crossed the finish line. Ogletree's unofficial time was indeed 4.37; It was later amended to a more pedestrian time. He and I both feel ripped off.

Other observations after two days of combine watching:

  • As you all know, I have been high on Percy Harvin since late in the college season. Harvin did well in Indy, but I was expecting a little more. First, he weighed in at 192 pounds after reportedly being a tad over 200 pounds at the end of the season. Ok, so that means he wanted to dazzle with his speed, right? Harvin ran a 4.41, which is awesome. But six other receivers were faster. Harvin also hoisted 225 pounds 19 times, which, again, is rock solid. But I thought he'd do better. Reggie Bush, with whom Harvin has been compared, pumped out 24 reps in 2006. Eddie Royal, another comparable, also kicked out 24 reps last year while running the 40 in 4.39.
  • Cal Poly's Ramses Barden ran an unofficial 4.57, which is exactly what everyone was expecting from the 6-6 receiver. Click here for the story I wrote about Barden at the Senior Bowl.
  • Andre Brown, who was the best-looking tailback at the Senior Bowl, came away with some impressive combine numbers that will further bolster his stock. The N.C. State product weighs 224 pounds but was the fourth-fastest running back with a 4.49 40. He also had 24 reps of 225 pounds and a 37-inch vertical jump.
  • The fastest of the running backs was Cedric "Stop staring at my hands" Peerman, who ran a 4.45 40. Peerman, you'll recall, had the smallest pair of hands at the Senior Bowl, an attribute that has been linked to fumbleitis. Peerman looked good in the Senior Bowl game, but fumbled on a hit by Rey Maualuga. It should be noted that Wyoming's Devin Moore ran a 4.41 at a private workout in Indy but was not invited to the combine.
  • Other running backs who are intriguing because the 49ers might be eyeing them: Liberty's Rashad Jennings ran a 4.50 at 234 pounds. Javarris Williams, a 219 pounder from Tennessee State, showed some wheels with a 4.52 40. Tennessee's Arian Foster weighs 232 pounds and ran the 40 in 4.56 seconds.
  • Texas' Brian Orakpo put up 31 reps of 225 pounds, the best of all the linebackers. Again, I hate to be a Debbie Downer, but I was expecting a little more from someone who came in with a reputation as a weight-room monster. Orakpo won't be as quick as fellow linebacker-defensive ends 'tweeners Everette Brown and Aaron Maybin, but he'll be the better pro early on because he already has a pro body. Brown lifted the bar 26 times, which is pretty impressive, and Maybine lifted it 22 times.
  • Brian Robiskie could do no wrong at the Senior Bowl and the combine. You have to wonder whether Robiskie would be the perfect replacement for Isaac Bruce should he depart. The question now is whether Robiskie will be there when the 49ers pick in the second round.

-- 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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