RG3 remains in the fast lane despite not showing his arm

  • Article by: DAN WIEDERER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 28, 2012 - 8:07 AM

Robert Griffin III

Photo: Michael Conroy, Associated Press

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INDIANAPOLIS — Baylor quarterback Robert Griffin III bypassed the opportunity to throw on Sunday at the NFL combine. His explanation was straightforward: "You don't go somewhere and run a game plan you never practice, throw to guys you don't practice with in an environment you're not prepared for."

Yet everything else the Heisman Trophy winner has done at the combine has been impressive. His enthusiasm, intelligence and quick wit have been obvious. "He's the type of person you'd like to go and get," Kansas City head coach Romeo Crennel said. "Not only was he sharp in football, but he was sharp about life."

On top of that, Griffin generated the most buzz on Sunday with his 40-yard dash, clocking at 4.38 seconds.

Griffin's continued success has proved most heartening to the St. Louis Rams, owners of the No. 2 pick in April's draft and eager to entertain trade offers from quarterback-needy teams.

St. Louis certainly celebrated on Sunday, now able to up its demands considerably. The Rams' plans at No. 2, of course, will have the most significant impact on what the Vikings can do with the third pick.

In the fast lane

The turf at Lucas Oil Stadium remains scorched from the Sunday sprints of Georgia Tech receiver Stephen Hill, who clocked an eye-opening time of 4.36 seconds. That'll certainly up the intrigue on a receiver who seems to have a lot going for him as the draft process continues. Hill's speed is undeniable. He also measured at 6-4 and 215 pounds.

Hill's 2011 statistics, however, are a bit hard to judge. He averaged an NCAA-best 29.3 yards per catch but saw limited opportunity as a pass catcher (28 catches) in a flexbone Georgia Tech offense that threw only 13 times per game.

Hill is an unquestionable deep threat with a knack for winning jump balls. But he has had his hands questioned and didn't exactly run a wide array of routes in Georgia Tech's run-heavy attack. At present, Hill projects as a late third- or early fourth-round pick.

Warning signs

North Alabama's Janoris Jenkins may be the most talented defensive back in this year's draft, blessed with elite athleticism and instincts. But it seems highly unlikely the Vikings would want to take a gamble on Jenkins, even if he was still available at the top of Round 2. After all, with Chris Cook's legal issues still unresolved, the Vikings can ill afford to add many more risks to their secondary.

Jenkins' rap sheet -- three arrests and his April 2011 dismissal from the University of Florida program -- will give all 32 NFL teams pause. On Sunday, when meeting reporters at the combine, the 23-year-old Jenkins also revealed that he has four children.

Jenkins is trying to combat questions about his character by being open about his past. "Everything I did, I did," he said. "I'm admitting it. ... It made me a stronger person, taught me how to fight through reality. That I've got to separate myself from certain people. To be successful at the next level, I can't do the things I used to do."


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