One of the few bright spots in the NFL offseason, the combine gives us a peek at the next round of player-making sausage of profesional football. Is it football? No, but after only two weeks of pretending to watch the Grammys and the NBA All-Star game into the black darkness without games, we’ll take what we can get.
But it’s more than just wanting football-related entertainment. My KSK brother-in-arms Bobby Big Wheel may think that the combine has outlived its usefulness to the fan with improved access to scouting reports and college rankings, but I disagree. Take away the fact that the combine is often the first chance some of us get to see some of the players heading to the draft, especially for those of us who only take a passing interest college football, there is something about watching the drills is fundamentally beautiful and interesting. It’s what I like going to the ballet, it’s not that I can’t jump, run and lift things on my own, but I can’t do it as well as these athletes can, which make it exciting to me. Gerald Sensabaugh set a record 46-inch vertical jump at the combine back in 2005. 46 inches! That’s jumping to the height of my chin, just because you can!
Day 1 of the combine features the kicker, offensive lineman (potential future fat man touchdown runners) and tight ends. Unfortunately kicker Lauren Silberman is competing at the regional combine in New Jersey next weekend and not the national tryout this weekend, it would have been interesting to see how the NFL Network covered her story today. However, we do get to look forward to Manti Te’o speaking to the media today, which is fortunate since everyone ran out of invisible girlfriend jokes about three weeks ago. Got to keep that well fresh.