The SEC had 66 players invited to the NFL Scouting Combine, which is the most of any league, but there still were some notable omissions of league players.
Two Ole Miss players – quarterback Chad Kelly and wide receiver Damore’ea Stringfellow – had off-field issues that kept them from getting invitations. But here are 10 other SEC players who won’t be going to Indianapolis for the combine.
By the way: There were 38 players (a full round of picks) taken in the 2016 draft who didn’t go to the combine, so all is not lost by any means.
LSU G Josh Boutte
The buzz: Boutte was one of the best run blockers in the SEC, and given the paucity of offensive line talent in this year’s draft, his omission is at least mildly surprising. His pass blocking does need work, though.
Mississippi State LB Richie Brown
The buzz: He finished fifth in the SEC with 102 tackles and made 211 stops combined in the past two seasons. His lack of quickness is an issue.
Vanderbilt DT Adam Butler
The buzz: Butler was a steady player in the middle of the line for Vanderbilt, which played high-level defense the past two seasons.
Florida DT Joey Ivie
The buzz: Ivie was a high-effort guy who was a two-year starter on some stout defenses at Florida. He showed well during Shrine Game practices, and he is more athletic than most think.
LSU TE Colin Jeter
The buzz: No, he’s not going to wow anyone with his receiving ability. But he is adequate in that role, and he can be a big-time blocker. He is a throwback tight end, and while not every team wants one of those, he has appeal to those who do because of his size (6-7, 254) and blocking ability.
Auburn G Alex Kozan
The buzz: he has a history of back trouble, but when he was healthy, he was one of the best interior linemen in the SEC. He was a first-team all-league pick in 2016 and, again, in a year in which the o-line talent is lacking, his omission is a surprise. He made 40 starts in his career and was a team captain as a senior.
Missouri CB Aarion Penton
The buzz: He was a three-year starter for Mizzou, and while he lacks top-end speed, he was a good cover corner for some top-flight Tigers defenses during his time in Columbia. Mizzou’s defense as a whole struggled in 2016 – but not Penton, who was one of the best corners in the league as a senior.
Georgia G Greg Pyke
The buzz: Pyke had an uneven career, but he is versatile (he started at tackle as a junior in 2015) and works hard. He also was a three-year starter. Georgia had just one player invited to the combine — wide receiver Isaiah McKenzie,
Tennessee DE Corey Vereen
The buzz: The Vols other end, the guy who lined up opposite Derek Barnett. He is not all that athletic, which hurts. But he plays hard, understands leverage and uses his strength to get to the passer; he had seven sacks in 2016.
South Carolina OT Mason Zandi
The buzz: He is massive (6-9, 315). While consistency was an issue, his size is intriguing. He played left tackle for the Gamecocks but could be a right tackle in the NFL for the right team. He can run block, and, again, his size means he has an upside. The Gamecocks didn’t have anyone invited to the combine.
© 2016, gridironnow.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.