BillsMafia’s Quick Hits from 2020 NFL Combine: OL, RB

Photo of former Iowa OT Tristan Wirfs from bleacherreport.com.

You can get expert opinions all over the web about who performs best/worst at the NFL Combine. We highly recommend following @Cover_1_ on Twitter to get the best and most accurate information about draft prospects for the Buffalo Bills. They are far and away the best source of data analytics and assessment of draft prospects for Bills fans.

Also, don’t forget to bookmark Astro ‘The Dean’ Kindig’s BillsMafia War Chart to use as the best up-to-date guide for all interesting prospects for Bills fans to follow leading up to the 2020 NFL Draft April 22-25 at Las Vegas.

CLICK HERE FOR BILLSMAFIA WAR CHART

However, if you’re also looking for an opinion from an old lady with amateur eyes and no professional scouting skills, look no further than our BillsMafia blog. I don’t purport to be an expert at anything other than the behavioral aspects of performance. If someone interesting stands out, it’s probably fairly obvious to the rest of the world.

I don’t have enough time in my personal life to do the deep-dive on college football players. Like many fans, I watch casually and make mental notes of players who pique my curiosity throughout the season.

My opinions about players while watching the Combine are based mostly on the good old eye test and less on who I think the Bills are likely to draft. I look for players who look like natural athletes no matter what particular skill they are trying to demonstrate.

But mostly, I like to see if someone stands out who gets less media hype than the top no-brainer picks. For example, a few years ago I fell in love with Courtland Sutton. Wasn’t trying to claim he was the best pick in the 2018 NFL Draft, but I saw something in him that just looked like he would succeed at the NFL level. He’s done pretty well for the Broncos and exceeded many people’s expectations, but not mine.

I’ve tried to figure out how to operationally define this “feeling” I get about certain players, but to be honest the twisted way my brain works defies explanation at times. So, without further blabber, let’s get to who stood out in my opinion on Friday evening.

OFFENSIVE LINE

Photo of former Iowa OT Tristan Wirfs from thegazette.com.

Tristan Wirfs, Iowa. This group at the Combine starts and stops with Tristan Wirfs. Wirfs blew my socks off watching him run the 40 in 4.85 seconds with an unofficial 10 yard split time of 1.69 seconds. Obviously the ten-yard split measurement is more relevant for offensive lineman who rarely run 40 yards in the NFL. Looking for that short burst speed from the big boys.

Seriously, how on earth can a 6’5″, 320-pound man move that much mass so quickly? Seems impossible until you watch his Combine run. This dude is as fluid a runner as I’ve ever seen for an offensive lineman and his hips move like silk over a smooth surface.

His secret sauce? Wrestling. You know Sean McDermott would love to have this guy become a stalwart on the offensive line for years to come. But alas, his Combine performance will likely see him long gone before the Bills draft with the 22nd. pick. A girl can dream.

TRISTAN WIRFS BIO & STATS

GREAT ARTICLE ABOUT STATE WRESTLING CHAMPION TRISTAN WIRFS

Photo of former Georgia OT Isaiah Wilson from 247sports.com.

Isaiah Wilson, Georgia. Now this is a mountain of a man who had himself one fine evening at the Combine. Check out his combine results below and explain to me how someone 6’6″, 350 pounds can move his body like he does. This guy would look mighty fine opposite Dion Dawkins. Move Cody Ford inside where he’s better suited and watch this OL become nasty with a capital “N”.

ISAIAH WILSON BIO & STATS

GREAT INTERVIEW BY DRAFTWIRE ON ISAIAH WILSON

Honorable Mention: Danny Pinter, Kentucky

RUNNING BACKS

Photo of former LSU RB Clyde Edwards-Helaire from 247sports.com.

Clyde Edwards Helaire, LSU. I’ve been sweet on this guy since ‘The Dean’ Kindig suggested I check him out more closely while watching the incredible season LSU had this year. Before getting too wrapped up in his comps to Devin Singletary, this guy is a star in the making all on his own. Get a big dude RB on the cheap in free agency if necessary. This guy has world class ability to navigate through the toughest defenses and great hands. His Combine performance did nothing to change my opinion.

CLYDE EDWARDS-HELAIRE BIO & STATS

GREAT BLEACHER REPORT ARTICLE ABOUT CLYDE EDWARDS-HELLAIRE

Photo of former Memphis WR/RB/KR Antonio Gibson from dailymemphian.com.

Antonio Gibson, Memphis. Listed as a WR, but I’m putting him in with the RBs because this guy is a jack-of-all trades (endorsed as much by Dean Kindig’s reports),. In this WR-rich draft Gibson might be a big value play and available in a lower round than he would be in other drafts. That he’s a return specialist also works in his favor because Sean McDermott cherishes versatility and guys who can come in and immediately contribute on Special Teams. He looked all the part of a prospect with a terrific future in the NFL at the Combine. Very intriguing guy.

ANTONIO GIBSON BIO & STATS

CHECK OUT WHAT THE DRAFT NETWORK WROTE ABOUT ANTONIO GIBSON

Honorable Mention: A.J. Dillon, Boston College.

Editor’s babble: On to the DL and LBs. Bills have clear needs in both areas. You can find me on Twitter @RobynMundyWYO. Enjoy your day!

About Robyn Mundy

Robyn Mundy is Editor-in-Chief of the BillsMafia blog at BuffaloFAMbase.com. She's a retired oncology nurse & psychotherapist who loves to write about her life-long passion for the Buffalo Bills, and occasionally something of clinical or social relevance. Robyn lives with her husband Gary and their dogs in the foothills of the Big Horn Mountains in Wyoming. Robyn is also a proud founding sponsor. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynMundyWYO.

One Reply to “BillsMafia’s Quick Hits from 2020 NFL Combine: OL, RB”

  1. What’s this!? You keep picking my “sleepers”!!!

    Isaiah Wilson would be a perfect pick up for the Bills in Round 2. More than one commentator during the season talked about Georgia having the best offensive line in the country, led by its two offensive tackles. While Andrew Thomas rightfully has gotten a lot of attention up until now because he was their LT, Wilson seems to have gotten lost in the pre-draft shuffle because he is seen as strictly being a RT. But that’s exactly what the Bills need! As you say, adding Wilson at RT (with Nsekhe to mentor and cover for him as he develops as a rookie) while moving Cody Ford inside would give the Bills a nasty offensive line. I love the idea of drafting him if is available in Round 2.

    While I love Edward-Helaire, I think he’s going to be taken fairly early in the draft; before I think the Bills should draft a running-back. Gibson, on the otherhand should still be available in Round 5, if the draft goes the way I think it will. Gibson didn’t play against the same level of competition that Shenault did, but is just as versatile, if not more so. He’s just as solidly built as Shenault at 6′, 228 and ran a sub-4.4 40 yard dash. He’s a different style runner than Singletary, more of a one-cut and go runner, with as much speed as Singletary, if not more (he can take it to the house). Having also played as a WR, he has good hands. All of which would make him a perfect complement to Singletary. He isn’t the most powerful runner and doesn’t have a lot of experience in pass protection because he was often deployed as a WR in passing situations. But, he makes up for it with the ability to be used in a variety of different ways, especially as a receiver. I think he would be an excellent later round pick up for the Bills.

    If the Bills can’t get Gibson or Lamichal Perrine in the 5th or 6th Round, A.J. Dillon would give the Bills the power back that they need to couple with Singletary. I would be delighted if the Bills could get Wilson to shore up the offensive line and then Gibson and Dillon to join Singletary in running behind it.