Over 300 players from across the country were invited to the 2016 NFL Combine including 14 from the Ohio State Buckeyes to lead all college football programs. However, the Hokies have a decent-sized group of players that will have their athleticism and strength measured by every top scout across the National Football League.
Kendall Fuller, Dadi Nicolas, Luther Maddy, and Ryan Malleck were all invited to attend the 2016 NFL Combine in Indianapolis. The Hokies ranked in the upper half of the ACC with number of players going to the NFL Combine with four times the number of players headed to Indy as in-state rival Virginia.
Kendall Fuller will likely have the most scouts watching him to see if he recovered from the injury that caused him to only play in three games this past season. Draft projections for Fuller range from the mid-first round to the middle of the second round, but a strong Combine performance should be able to solidify a spot in the first round with the potential for Fuller to prove once again he is one of the top 3 cornerbacks in the 2016 NFL Draft.
Dadi Nicolas didn’t have a great senior season, but closed out the season well and impressed many scouts at the Senior Bowl. Most view Nicolas as a 3-4 OLB at the next level, and the Combine will be a great chance for him to show off his impressive speed and agility. Nicolas definitely has the potential to go in the second round, and has the chance to strengthen his stock as a day 2 pick at the Combine.
Luther Maddy came back in 2015 and finished out his career well with an All-ACC First Team caliber season that makes him someone worthy of being drafted. Maddy slimmed down some this season, and scouts will likely be intrigued to see how he does in some of the drills that measure acceleration, speed, and explosiveness. Maddy has a chance to climb to the fourth or fifth round range with a good Combine.
Ryan Malleck was somewhat of a surprise but is very deserving of the chance to prove himself in Indianapolis. Injuries affected Malleck’s Virginia Tech career, but Malleck is an all-around tight end that can be a solid blocker and somewhat useful in the passing game. Malleck will be looking to prove that he is worthy of being selected and a good Combine would help those chances in a league that has teams wanting two or three quality tight ends.
Kendall Fuller, Dadi Nicolas, Luther Maddy, and Ryan Malleck are all worthy of their spots in the NFL Combine with the potential that all four will be drafted in the 2016 NFL Draft.