Gragg Shows Off Athleticism At NFL Combine


FAYETTEVILLE — Three of Arkansas’ six NFL Scouting Combine invitees wrapped up their stay in Indianapolis with on-field workouts Saturday.

And one of them — tight end Chris Gragg — showed he was one of the most athletic players at his position in the 2013 NFL Draft class.

Gragg turned in the fastest 40-yard dash time during the first day of workouts at Lucas Oil Field, clocking a 4.5-second run. He tested well in other drills, too, recording the top broad jump (125 inches) and vertical leap (37 ½ inches) among tight ends. He posted 18 repetitions in the bench press earlier in the week.

The performance helped Gragg — who measured in at 6-foot-3, 244 pounds earlier in the week — generate some publicity to end his four-day stay at the NFL’s premiere job fair. In fact, ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay said via Twitter Gragg was the “most surprising” tight end early on with his combine workout.

What does it mean for his draft prospects? It’s not clear at this point. But NFL Draft analyst Mike Mayock called Gragg a mid-round selection Saturday.

“The problem with Gragg, if there is a ‘problem,’ is durability,” Mayock said during in an NFL.com video analysis from the first day of workouts. “He missed time in two of his four years at Arkansas. And hes a little bit of an undersized guy.”

Gragg – who was measured at 6-foot-3, 244 pounds earlier this week — didn’t generate much buzz entering the NFL Combine because of a disappointing senior season plagued by injuries. He caught 22 passes for 289 yards and three touchdowns, but missed all or parts of eight games because of leg injuries.

Gragg couldn’t be reached for comment after his workout Saturday. But he sounded happy with the effort afterward, tweeting: “I told them....and im still gonna work.”

Offensive guard Alvin Bailey also ran a fast 40 time for his group, positing an official 4.95 on his first attempt. Bailey didn’t make it through his second run, pulling up with an apparent hamstring injury and didn’t participate in other drills. But he finished as one of six linemen to run the 40 in under 5 seconds Saturday.

“Didnt work out how i wanted it to but had a great time out here in indy, also met some great people,” Bailey said via Twitter on Saturday.

Arkansas punter Dylan Breeding also tested well, running the 40 in 4.74 seconds.

Quarterback Tyler Wilson, receiver Cobi Hamilton and running back Knile Davis will participate in on-field work to wrap up their NFL Combine stay today.

Davis Tops On Bench

Davis will have to show teams he is durable after suffering several injuries dating back to high school. But he showed off his strength on the bench press Saturday.

Davis bench pressed 225 pounds 31 times, which was the second-best performance among running backs. Wake Forest’s Tommy Bohanon completed a group-high 36.

Hamilton completed 11 repetitions on the bench press Saturday. Missouri wide receiver TJ Moe had a position-high 26 repetitions on the bench press.

Grad Assistants Hired

Arkansas coach Bret Bielema has hired four “quality control” coaches for his staff.

The group includes former Fayetteville High defensive coordinator Brian Early, who is now a defensive quality control coach. The other three coaches hired include Eric White (defensive quality control), Patrick Doherty (offensive quality control) and Chris Hurd (special teams quality control).

Each coach will earn $25,000 from the university, according to salary figures obtained through a Freedom of Information request.

Wilson on Gruden’s QB Camp

Wilson will be one of nine draft-hopeful quarterbacks featured in an episode of “Gruden’s QB Camp” with ESPN NFL analyst Jon Gruden. Other quarterbacks featured will include USC’s Matt Barkley, Oklahoma’s Landry Jones, N.C. State’s Mike Glennon, West Virginia’s Geno Smith and Tennessee’s Tyler Bray.

Three non-quarterbacks will appear in episodes of the show as well: South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore, Notre Dame linebacker Manti Te’o and Texas A&M offensive tackle Luke Joeckel.

The first episode will air on ESPN2 on April 4 at 7:30 p.m. Wilson said last week he is scheduled to shoot his episode with Gruden next month.

“I’m sure it will be as flavorful as ever,” said Wilson, who will appear on the show two years after former Razorback quarterback Ryan Mallett. “I’m sure we’ll call the hogs and all that kind of crazy stuff on the set. But it will be good.”