The four Hawkeyes that participated in the 2019 NFL Combine this past weekend earned themselves some money and impressed NFL scouts. Iowa also took home the honor of winning the NFL Combine Olympics.
One player that helped out Iowa’s final number was tight end Noah Fant. Fant dominated the position group and posted tight end bests in the following events: 40-yard dash, vertical, broad jump, three-cone shuttle, 60-yard shuttle, and placed third in the short shuttle. Fant recorded a combine-best 16 total points throughout all of his events (five golds and a bronze).
Final #NFLCombine medals count:
1) @HawkeyeFootball, 11
2) @NDFootball, 10
3) @UMichFootball, 9
4) @UW_Football, 7
t5) @KStateFB, 6
t5) @OleMissFB, 6
t5) @PennStateFball, 6
t5) @OhioStateFB, 6
t5) @USC_Athletics, 6 pic.twitter.com/xImC1QuqU1
— NFL Draft (@NFLDraft) March 5, 2019
What makes this feat more impressive is that Iowa only had four players at the NFL combine. There were plenty of other schools that had more players at the combine such as Ohio State (10), Washington 9, Ole Miss (9), Notre Dame (8), and Michigan (6). Iowa players don’t typically let anyone down at the NFL combine, but they usually blow people away with their performances.
All four of Iowa’s players at the NFL combine were ranked as three-star prospects according to 247Sports Composite rankings. None of the players were ranked in the top 30 of their own position group coming out of high school. Fant was ranked the highest of the four (ranked as the 31st best athlete in the 2016 class).
No Iowa player at combine disappointed with their performance. It’s now looking more than likely that they will have two first-round picks (Fant, T.J Hockenson) and the other two won’t fall below the third round (Amani Hooker and Anthony Nelson). Former Iowa players noticed the NFL Draft’s tweet and poked fun to outsiders who don’t see Iowa as an athletic team.
“#Shocked I didn’t know Iowa players were athletic,” former Iowa center and current Chicago Bears guard James Daniels tweeted.
“I’ll say it again, Best Developmental Program IN THE COUNTRY! We maximize potential,” former Iowa offensive lineman Julian Vandervelde tweeted.
Hooker was a guy that many felt would be a third-day pick in the NFL draft due to concerns about his athleticism, but he surprised a lot of people with his combine performance. Many people expected Hooker to run a 4.6 40-yard dash, but he had a different idea. The standout junior ran 4.48 40-yard dash, which was eighth best among safeties. He also recorded a 37-inch vertical and ranked second among safeties in the 3-cone drill at 6.81 seconds.
Hockenson also solidified himself as a likely first-round pick with his performance as he wasn’t far behind Fant. He recorded a 4.71 40-yard dash and a 37.5 inch vertical. It’s not a question if the Iowa tight ends will be the first two tight ends off the board, it’s a question of which one of them goes first.
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