While NCAA basketball props provided by BetUs are hot on the agenda with the Tournament on the horizon, the NFL still looms large over the sports landscape, and yes, there is something to talk about other than the impending lockout. The combine took place beginning on Thursday and ending on Tuesday, and on Wednesday the New York Jets showed why you shouldn’t take too much from workouts.
The Jets parted ways with end Vernon Gholston, who they picked with the sixth selection in the 2008 draft, and promptly signed to a five-year deal that included $21 in guaranteed money. Gholston was a two-time Big Ten performer at Ohio State and was an All-American in 2007, but his workout at the combine had scouts drooling as he tied for the most number of bench-press reps, and then at the Ohio State pro day, he ran a 4.58 in the 40-yard-dash and a 41-inch vertical. But he never got a good foothold in the Big Apple, and it got even worse when Rex Ryan brought his complicated defensive schemes to New York as Gholston couldn’t grasp him. He never even registered a sack in his three seasons in New York, and that’s not what you want to see out of a No.6 pick.
Gholston is a warning for all those coaches who look at the combine (and pro day) numbers and say, this kid is going to be a star. But so much more goes into drafting a player, especially in the first round. If you watched tape on Gholston at Ohio State, he took too many plays off and while he was explosive when he wanted to be, that didn’t happen all the time, or even frequently. You can get away with being extremely athletic in college, but it’s a different story in the NFL, when you’re playing against grown men who are motivated for every snap. Unless something drastic happens, look for Vernon Gholston to be added to the list of players who made coaches and scouts suffer from Mike Mamula Syndrome.