3 tips for Carolina Panthers fans ahead of 2024 NFL Scouting Combine

Draft season is upon us...

Jonathan Mingo
Jonathan Mingo / Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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Each drill is different for every position group position

There are six primary drills that each prospect must do. These are the 40-yard dash, bench press, shuttle run, vertical jump, and broad jump. These drills test the speed, agility, strength, and explosiveness of each participant. However, they are not all the same for every position.

For example, teams will note a defensive lineman’s 40-yard dash as a whole, which measures speed over distance. However, there is a part of the 40-yard dash that is very important for defensive linemen - the 10-yard split.

It’s a drill within a drill that measures a player’s initial burst or their first few steps off of a theoretical line of scrimmage. Former Pittsburgh defensive lineman Calijah Kancey had a 1.64-second 10-yard split with an official 40-yard dash time of 4.67.

That is a quick and explosive prospect, folks. Kancey hasn’t turned out bad for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers so far as a young, dynamic piece along their defensive line.

Vertical and broad jumps are going to measure a player’s explosiveness. If you see anyone jump anywhere from 36 inches to 40 or more, that’s a good showing of their explosiveness. As for the broad jump, 10-plus feet is quite explosive - especially if you are Byron Jones - who set a world record in 2015 with an astonishing 12-foot-3 effort.

As you would expect, a bench press is a great measure of someone's overall upper body strength. Short and 60-yard shuttles measure flexibility and balance for prospects.

The three-cone drill will showcase agility and change of direction. This is a noteworthy display of a prospect's quickness - whether they are a skill position player on offense or a defensive back.

Sometimes, the three-cone drill is a makeup for a potentially lower-than-expected 40-yard dash. Receivers and defensive backs with slower 40-times but quicker three-cone times are typically quicker and more decisive than winning with just speed and explosion.

By the way, most of these prospects are some of the best athletes not just in the country but the world overall. Don’t take this event for granted. A 4.53-second 40-yard dash is insanely fast for any human being. Not everyone is Tyreek Hill.