Four Rebels have descended upon Indianapolis and Lucas Oil Stadium this week to take part in the 2018 NFL Combine. Defensive end Marquis Haynes, defensive tackle Breeland Speaks, offensive tackle Rod Taylor, and running back Jordan Wilkins have all four made the journey and will now go in front of 32 NFL team scouts and front office personnel to try and earn a spot on a Sunday roster.
The festivities began earlier this week with participants going through the bench press drill. Jordan Wilkins already completed his portion of the drill and finished with a well-respected 16 reps. Haynes, Speaks, and Taylor did not participate in the bench press drill but should be slated to take part in the rest of the on-the-field drills this weekend.
Jordan Wilkins, running back
Wilkins is trying to prove that, when healthy, he can perform as well as the rest of the nation’s best. After sitting out a year due to academic ineligibilty, the Cordova, Tenn. native ran for 1,011 yards and scored nine times on just 155 carries. He also caught 26 passes for 241 yards and a touchdown.
DID NOT PARTICIPATE IN 40-YARD DASH
RED CUP DRAFT PROJECTION: 6th round
Marquis Haynes, edge rusher
Haynes is the school’s all-time leader in sacks and is trying to prove that he can be a dynamic pass rusher in the NFL off the edge. The former Freshman All-American and All-SEC performer finished his Ole Miss career with 32 sacks (the most in the modern era). In the ever-evolving NFL, Haynes could be a valuable pickup late for someone.
Here’s a recap of Marquis Haynes at #NFLCombine2018 showing what makes him so great! An impressive day for @Quishaynes38 as he showcased his skills at both DL and LB. #HottyToddy pic.twitter.com/yPOHW2FAZv— The Rebel Walk (@TheRebelWalk) March 4, 2018
RED CUP DRAFT PROJECTION: 4th round
Breeland Speaks, defensive tackle
Speaks finished on a high note in Oxford but it wasn’t after a few up and down moments as well. The Jackson, Miss. native had six sacks in the final six games of the 2017 season once he moved to defensive end. He started all 12 games for Matt Luke and finished with 67 tackles, eight for loss, and earned himself second-team All-SEC. Breeland has all the talent, he just needs to win over some front office personnel in the interview process first.
RED CUP DRAFT PROJECTION: 4th round
Rod Taylor, offensive tackle
Last but certainly not least is another Jackson native, Big Rod Taylor. The former All-Everything recruit suffered through some injuries in his career at Ole Miss, but started every game at right tackle for Jack Bicknell. He is in that same boat with Breeland. Plenty of talent, but must prove maturity. He IS an above average athlete which could help his case, but versatility may not be enough to offset his lack of height (6’3) to play tackle. He needs to make a roster playing guard, in my opinion, which is no big deal since he played guard for two years in Oxford.
Rod Taylor 1st unofficial 40: 5.30, 10 of 1.83— Josh Norris (@JoshNorris) March 2, 2018
Rod Taylor is killing it at the #NFLCombine2018!! Listen to what the experts are saying about him! “Rod Taylor has looked so good today!” Very impressed with @jr_roderick’s movement skills. pic.twitter.com/PAzSCr5sJc— The Rebel Walk (@TheRebelWalk) March 2, 2018
RED CUP DRAFT PROJECTION: Undrafted free agent
On-field workout schedule
Friday, March 2nd - Running backs, offensive linemen, and special teams participants hit the field for day one of drills on the turf.
Saturday, March 3rd - Quarterbacks, wide receivers and tight ends are up next
Sunday, March 4th - Defensive linemen and linebackers will participate in day three workouts in Indy.
Monday, March 5th - Defensive backs close up shop and Rich Eisen runs the 40-yard dash.
How to watch
Time: Every day begins at 8 a.m. CT
TV: NFL Network
Online streaming: NFL.com
EDITOR’S NOTE: Check back here throughout the weekend. We will be updating with results and/or video when it becomes available.