NFL Combine notebook: Pitt's Boyd posts poor 40-yard dash time
INDIANAPOLIS — Pitt's Tyler Boyd isn't a straight speed guy, and he showed that in the 40-yard dash at Saturday's NFL Combine by running a 4.58 — the 24th fastest of 37 wide receivers who chose to run.
How much that will affect Boyd's draft stock is yet to be determined. However, a first-day pick likely is out of the question following the slow 40 time.
Boyd was projected as a second- or third-round pick coming into the combine.
Boyd said earlier in the week he needed to improve on his explosiveness. Boyd, a Clairton graduate, averaged just over 10 yards per catch a year ago.
Many draft experts compare Boyd to San Diego Chargers receiver Keenan Allen. Allen — although coming off a knee injury — ran a 4.71 in the 2013 draft. Still, the Chargers used a third-round pick on Allen.
Boyd also had 11 reps of 225 pounds in the bench press, a broad jump of 119 inches and a vertical leap of 34 inches.
Family affair for Nassib?
There's an outside shot Penn State defensive end Carl Nassib could join his brother (quarterback Ryan Nassib) with the Giants following April's draft.
“That would be awesome,” Nassib said. “I would love to be on his team. It's a fickle draft, and chances are slim. But you never know.”
There's a better chance that the nation's leader in sacks gets drafted by one of the other 31 teams and will have to play against his brother, and that too would be fine.
“Both scenarios sound pretty awesome,” Nassib said. “So awesome.”
The Steelers are in the market for a defensive end. Nassib met with the Steelers on Friday and also at the Senior Bowl.
OSU tight end: No, I'm the best
Hunter Henry is considered the best all-around tight end in the draft.
Ohio State's Nick Vannett believes it is somebody else — him.
“I feel like I am the best combo tight end in this draft,” Vannett said.
However, numbers don't support that.
Vannett only had 17 catches as a senior for the Buckeyes, but there was a reason for that — the offensive talent they had and that their offense ran the ball so much and so effectively.
“The first thing when I meet with these teams, they always say they think I was underutilized,” Vannett said. “I always smirk when I hear that. We have so many threats at Ohio State. It is kind of hard spreading the ball around to every one of us. We ran the ball a lot because we had so much success at it.”
Vannett was asked to block more than he was asked to catch passes.
“That's really all I did last year,” Vannett said. “I am happy that I did that because I feel that it made me into more of a complete tight end. I feel like in this year's draft I am the best combo tight end in this draft.”
Vannett said he didn't meet with the Steelers at the combine because he met with them at the Senior Bowl.
McKeesport grad is missing man
Not everybody can be invited to the NFL Combine, however, USC defensive tackle Antwaun Woods felt the league gave a raw deal to teammate Delvon Simmons, a McKeesport graduate.
Simmons, who originally signed with North Carolina before backing out and going to Texas Tech, transferred after his sophomore year to USC. Simmons played in 27 games in two years with the Trojans and finished with 57 tackles and four sacks last season at defensive tackle.
“Unfortunately, he's not here, but if there is one guy who deserves to be here, it is him,” Woods said. “He had a great year and made some plays for us. I wish he was here, but he is definitely a great player.”
Woods said Simmons has a chip on shoulder about not getting invited to the combine.
“He feels that he deserves to be here also,” Woods said. “That will continue to motivate him, and he will continue to work hard toward Pro Day.”
Bethel Park represented
West Virginia linebacker Nick Kwiatkowski believes he is the first Bethel Park graduate to be invited to the NFL Combine.
“I am the first Bethel Park guy, I think, for as long as I can remember, to be at this event,” Kwiatkowski said. “They have been very supportive back home. I have had calls, texts all week wishing me good luck. Just a ton of support.”
Kwiatkowski finished his senior season with 86 tackles, three sacks and three interceptions. He is being projected as a mid- to late-round pick.