Jared Cook Amazes Scouts at Combine
Jared Cook may be changing that. The South Carolina Gamecock ran a blazingly fast 4.50 40-yard dash--the second fastest time by a tight end this decade (topped only by Vernon Davis), while Pettigrew ran a very pedestrian 4.82 40. Cook wrapped up the title of best athlete among the tight end crop by also showing the best vertical leap (41 inches) and broad jump (10-foot-3) among tight ends while also bench pressing 225 pounds a very solid 23 times (two more than elite tackle prospect Michael Oher).
Everyone knew that Cook was likely to run a pretty fast time -- at 6-foot-5, 245 pounds, he's not much of a blocker and will have to be primarily a receiving tight end in the NFL -- but by running a time that will be faster than most of the wide receivers running this weekend, Cook has shown he is truly an elite athlete. Cook had to pull out of the receiving drills because he pulled a muscle, but after putting on the show he did in the "measurable" events, that won't be much of a problem for him.
There can be an argument made that Cook's climb up the draft ladders will be another sign that NFL scouts get too enamored with 40-yard dash times and don't focus enough on production -- Davis hasn't turned into an NFL star yet -- but the NFL loves elite athletes and Cook has proven that he's a one-in-a-million athlete.
Pettigrew is more of an all-around talent, but he will have some damage control ahead of him as he heads to his individual workout at Oklahoma State. Tight ends who can't crack 4.8 in the 40-yard dash don't get drafted in the first round, no matter how productive they were in college, so Pettigrew will have some pressure on him to fix his horrendous time.