Over the past couple of days, players at the NFL Scouting Combine are being poked and prodded, and then ran through all sorts of tests and drills to gauge their athleticism and football skills. In past years, some players have chosen to skip the Combine and either show off their skills at the college's own Pro Day, or skip it altogether based on their body of work over their college careers, which sometimes speak loud enough themselves.
However, some players have taken this opportunity to introduce themselves to the football world and their draft stock has soared as a result. All Baltimore Ravens fans have known about their need to upgrade the tight end position, as Todd Heapbegins to age and his injuries add up. The most widely speculated name mentioned has been and continues to be Oklahoma's Jermaine Gresham. However, a tight end's name is beginning to appear on everyone's lips after the first few days in Indianapolis and that belongs to Pittsburgh's Dorin Dickerson.
Dickerson is a 6'4", 226 pound tight end, who is a bit small to be a huge blocking guy, but might fit the bill as an H-Back and pose nightmares for anyone covering him out of the backfield or whereever he lines up. Too big and strong for a defensive back and way too fast for a linebacker, Dickerson is making huge strides with all the NFL coaches and scouts at the Combine off of some very impressive performances so far.
Dorin had the best time of all tight ends in the 40 yard dash (4.40), in the 225 pound bench press (24 reps), 1st by far in the vertical jump (43"), second in the broad jump (10'5"), and 3rd in the 3-Cone Drill (9.6 seconds) and the 20-Yard Shuttle (30 seconds).
He was used in college by the Panthers at tight end, wide receiver, fullback and even played a little linebacker. Most scouts see him lining up as the H-Back, in the fullback or tight end position, causing matchup problems at every spot. If the Ravens decide to skip over the tight end in the first round of the NFL Draft in April, they certainly will have intriguing other options as the draft progresses. Just one more name to remember along the way.