Though the 2020 NFL Scouting Combine began earlier this week, the workouts under the brightest spotlight kicked off Thursday. The quarterbacks, wide receivers, and tight ends each showcased their athleticism in the 40-yard dash, vertical leap, and other drills that NFL teams use when building their draft board.
For the Green Bay Packers, who enter the offseason in need of additional ammunition at receiver, the first big day of the drill work provides plenty of optimism for the incoming rookie class.
Even before the combine, many connected the Packers to wideout prospects like LSU’s Justin Jefferson, TCU’s Jalen Reagor, and Arizona State’s Brandon Aiyuk. Each crushed the workouts, with Jefferson and Reagor running solidly in the 4.4 range for the 40-yard dash and producing 37.5-inch and 42-inch verticals, respectively. Aiyuk didn’t blaze quite as strong of a 40 (4.5 seconds) but delivered a 40-inch vertical. Additionally, receivers Chase Claypool, Donovan Peoples-Jones, and Denzel Mims delivered standout performances.
Quintez Cephus has gone through a lot over the past few years. For those unaware, he faced multiple sexual assault charges during his time at the University of Wisconsin that resulted from his suspension from the football team and expulsion from the school. However, after being found not guilty, Wisconsin reinstated Cephus and allowed him back on the team. While not considered a Day 1 prospect, he could push himself into the middle rounds with a strong showing at the combine.
With Jimmy Graham likely on his way out of Green Bay and Jace Sternberger still an unknown coming out of his rookie season, the Packers have reasons to consider impending free-agent tight end Austin Hooper. Head coach Matt LaFleur and tight-ends coach Justin Outten each overlapped with Hooper during their time with the Atlanta Falcons. Furthermore, Hooper’s familiarity with LaFleur’s offense makes him easier to project success in Green Bay. Still, such a decision will always come down to the cost, and Hooper will likely garner one of the biggest contracts at the position.
Any price increase will garner plenty of attention, though no ticket will go up by more than $7. Packers president Mark Murphy notes that, even with the additional costs, the team’s prices rank in the bottom half of the NFL.