INDIANAPOLIS — The first workout for the offensive linemen of the combine — the bench press on Friday – provided another jumping off point for analyzing the group that is thought could provide as many as six first-round draft choices.
One of the premier players in that group, Oklahoma State OT Russell Okung, was second among the group with 38 repetitions.
According to an NFC scout, what was impressive about Okung’s performance was that he measured in this week with 36-inch arms, a difficult length for the bench press. NFL.com analyst Bucky Brooks also noted earlier that Okung may have sealed his position as the premier offensive tackles with his oustanding dimensions.
Only a very poor performance could have damaged a player of Okung’s status, but what it did do was prove his dedication up to this point, according to NFL.com senior analyst Pat Kirwan.
“It’s a statement about his dedication in the weight room and taking care of himself,” Kirwan said. “In the business of lineman, an offensive line coach has to fall in love with the guy. The first thing that’s going to happen is they’re going to love that this guy is a worker. The next thing that’s going to happen when they interview him is they’re going to find out the guy is mentally tough.”
Kirwan believes that Okung cemented his status as a top-10 pick with his latest statement.
– Frank Tadych