A couple of things about the combine since combine season is coming
1. The 40 yard dash is the second most over rated test and here's why:
a) How often does a player run 40 yards? How often does a player run 40 yards in a STRAIGHT line with the same mechanics they use in a 40 yard test?
b) Let's build on that for a second. One of the brightest soccer strength and conditioning coaches noticed something with his players. He noticed ever speed/agility drill he implemented with his players didn't seem to translate on the field. It DID make them faster at the drills they progressed, but not so much on the field.
His remedy? He made his players start doing drills dribbling a soccer ball instead of just straight up running. The results were much better why? Because the motor patterns learned while running without a ball weren't the same as running WITH a ball.
Now, the same goes for football players. The motor patterns for running in a perfect line without a football are totally different then when you have 250 lb players in your face/in your way. That's why there's a clocked 40 speed and a game time speed.
A good example is DeAngelo Hall and DeSean Jackson. If I remember correctly Hall actually had a better 40 time but we all watched with out naked eyes DeSean Jackson completely outran DeAngelo Hall who had an ANGLE on DeSean!
DeSean clocked in at sub 4.4s but his game speed is obviously a LOT faster. When he gets into the open field he is not running in a direct straight line, and obviously no one can catch him.
It's an absolute embarassment that talent scouts will have players fly up the draft board after a good 40 time or have them spiral downwards because of a bad one.
One last thing I wanted to mention about a 40 time is that it CAN be manufactured to a degree. There are strength exercises, drills, and even technique can award you a better time (Jimmy if I would have known you were going to tryout for the Soul, I would've helped you lol)
2. The Bench Press
Technically there really is no exercise that is "sport specific", but if you try and find one that's close to the movements you make in sports. The flat bench, going straight up and down, is not something you do in sports, or football. The Incline bench, is actually a better upper body strength test because the range of motion mimics sports movements much better. Although, truth be told, you use much more hips, lower back, glutes and hammies in football than you do upper body.
The other issue with the bench test is that after 15 or so reps the exercise because an endurance test. It's actually not even an absolute strength indicator!
My best recorded bench is 370 @ 200 lbs, my training partner can bench 450 @ BW 181. His muscle make up is much more fast twitch and can only do 225 maybe 20 times. My recorded record is 23. Obviously, he's much stronger than me at a much lower body weight. The rep test would not suggest that.
The shuttle and cone test are the same thing. You don't use the same motor patterns you do in football, they can also be coached to have better times also. The broad jump and vertical -- same story.
The reason why I posted this is because when we start talking about draft prospects I don't want to hear "OMG, so and so wasn't that great of a WR but WOW his 40 time really intrigues me."
I want to see intelligent discussions more along the lines of "He demonstrated good speed on the field and runs good routes.: