OXFORD – Any questions about Laquon Treadwell’s speed may not be answered at the NFL Scouting Combine this week.
Scott Bischoff of NewEraScouting.com reported Monday that Treadwell, the Ole Miss wide receiver, will not run at the combine, which begins today in Indianapolis. Quarterbacks and wide receivers take part beginning Wednesday.
Treadwell has plenty of other strengths going for him, enough that ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper currently has him as the first wide receiver off the board.
But speed seems to be a question mark for Treadwell, according to his draft profile at NFL.com. “Doesn’t have the cushion-eating vertical speed to scare cornerbacks,” it reads.
Treadwell, as an Ole Miss junior, showed no obvious lingering effects of the horrific broken leg that ended his sophomore season the first week of November in 2014.
A good goal for Treadwell in the 40 – wherever he runs it next – would be in the mid-4.5s, said his agent, Tony Fleming of Impact Sports Management.
“A guy like him of his size, his physicality, I think teams would like to see a player like him run that,” Fleming said. “What he’s capable of running, we don’t know yet. Guys don’t train for the 40 every day. This is something he’s been working on, and we’ll see what he can do.”
Treadwell’s draft grade of 6.25 is the highest among available wide receivers. Much of that score has to do with his physicality.
“He wins those 50-50 balls,” Fleming said. “He competes for the ball. He’s a big, strong receiver with big, strong hands.”
Fleming has been in contact with a number of clubs about Treadwell and said he’s largely viewed as an NFL-ready receiver with the expectation to play early.
Treadwell avoided off-field drama at Ole Miss. His comeback from injury became a national story, and his character should be a plus for him when he sits down for interviews with NFL executives.
‘Really tough sport’
“It’s valued. I wouldn’t say equally. I think some teams may put a little more emphasis on it than others,” Fleming said. “NFL personnel realize that football is a really tough sport. They want tough guys. They don’t expect guys to be necessarily choir boys, but they definitely want guys that are going to represent the organization well.”
Treadwell had 82 catches in 2015 and led the SEC in receiving yards per game at 88.7. He had 11 touchdown catches and averaged 14.1 yards per catch.
Ole Miss used him in the vertical passing game but as much as anything else in situations where he could use his strength to break a tackle and get yards after contact.
Fleming says this time of year is all about pin-pointing areas of concern and having the right answers.
“Laquon, I’ve never seen him run down, never seen him caught from behind. He gets separation. It’s just something that he’s got to go out there and show them what he can do.”