UCLA Football: 2017 NFL Combine Wrap-up

Mar 6, 2017; Indianapolis, IN, USA; UCLA Bruins defensive back Fabian Moreau does a workout drill during the 2017 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports
Mar 6, 2017; Indianapolis, IN, USA; UCLA Bruins defensive back Fabian Moreau does a workout drill during the 2017 NFL Combine at Lucas Oil Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports /

With the 2017 NFL Combine in the books, GoJoeBruin.com takes a look at the former UCLA Football players who were invited to Indianapolis as they worked to realize their NFL dreams.

The NFL Combine, or the “underwear Olympics” as it is lovingly known, is a rite of passage for many NFL hopefuls. This is especially true for the recent influx of UCLA football players who have been invited over the past five years.

This year’s crop of Bruins included an explosive pass rusher, an athletic offensive tackle, a rising cornerback, a mountain of a defensive tackle and a heat seeking missile of a linebacker.

The Bruins acquitted themselves extremely well so let’s take a look at the highlights from this weekend’s activities.

Speed On Display

Potential first round pick Takkarist McKinley posted a 4.59 40 yard dash which isn’t too shabby for a guy who weighs 250lbs and spent about 80% of his defensive snaps with his hand in the dirt.

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Fabian Moreau has been working himself into a potential first round pick and his 40 did nothing to dampen that talk. Moreau posted a blazing 4.3 at over 200lbs. With his physicality and size, Moreau proved he can keep pace with even the fastest receivers in the NFL.

Jayon Brown didn’t blow anyone away with his 40 but 4.7 at 230 isn’t slow either. His best fit in the NFL will be in a defense where he can show off his fantastic pass coverage skills.

Eddie Vanderdoes displayed his speed by breaking the five second mark. He likely will never run 40 yards in an NFL game but the ability to move that quickly at his listed size of 305lbs will be heavily coveted by teams.

The largest of all the Bruins, Connor McDermott, ran a slower 40 than desirable but more than made up for that in his 3-cone drill and 20 yards shuttle where he was a top performer. Those drills demonstrate his ability to move and change direction quickly.

Related Story: NFL Draft Profiles-Fabian Moreau

On the Field

  • Brown was able to demonstrate the fluid hips and quick feet that he used to great effect to defend passes at UCLA. Among all of the linebackers, few looked as at home dropping into coverage as Brown did.
  • McDermott has some smooth feet when he’s been tested and despite what his on the field play might look like, no one could deny the athletic ability he has.
  • In bag drills Vanderdoes looked like a dancing bear. He moved nimbly and displayed the short area quickness necessary to thrive in a phone booth.
  • Moreau is rising up draft boards not only due to his monster vertical jump, or his blazing forty but also due to his loose hips. Moreau displayed the fluidity to play plenty of man which he will do at the next level.
  • McKinley largely looked fantastic but it is being whispered among the scouting community that he didn’t look to have the bend that an elite rusher has. Of course he will have to wait to answer more of those questions until training camp as his shoulder surgery will sideline him for the next few months. What is an interesting development out of the combine is the talk that Takk could possibly see some time in the middle of the linebacking corps rather than the edge of it.


Of course the combine is just the beginning and the Bruins have many more talented players that were not invited that I expect to at least see some time on NFL rosters.

UCLA will hold its Pro Day on March 21st which will give the aforementioned players another opportunity to impress scouts and players who were not invited to the combine will finally get their shot in front of NFL personnel.

This combine has to be considered a major success for the program as all UCLA players invited performed either where they were projected or well above the projections. This type of success draws more attention from scouts to UCLA and also lends itself to the recruiting trail.

Next: UCLA Basketball: Pac-12 Tournament Schedule and Preview

GoJoeBruin.com will bring you all the notes from UCLA’s pro day as well as all the NFL Draft news as it pertains to UCLA as the process continues.