Combine Day 1 Results for Carlson, Sullivan


Day 1 Combine Results

John Carlson John Sullivan
Height 6’4″ 7/10 6’3″ 4/10
Weight 255 301
40 4.89 (10) 5.4 (27)
Bench 20 (10) 21 (34)
Vertical 30.5 (6) 30 (2)
Shuttle 20 Yard 4.28 (4) 4.55 (6)
Shuttle 60 Yard 11.59 (3) n/a

John Carlson and John Sullivan both participated in their respective drills at the NFL Combine today and both put up some sub par numbers and could very likely have seen their draft stock drop. Both prospects stats are to the right and below are some notes on their performances compared to others at their positions.

  • Carlson, considered by some as the best tight end in the draft prior to the combine, could see his draft stock fall after running a 4.89 and a 4.96 in the 40 yard dash. Both times are not very impressive and even though he had an illness this off-season that resulted in him losing 20 pounds, those numbers could cause him to fall. He will need to improve on his 40 and runs something in the 4.7 range to reclaim his spot as the top tight end in the draft.
  • Carlson will need to run a time like that because of some impressive performances by Dustin Keller (4.53), Brad Cottam (4.68 at 270 lbs), and Kellen Davis (4.58 at 262 lbs).
  • Carlson did help himself out with a vertical jump of 30.5″ but Keller owned this event as well with an impressive 38″.
  • Both Carlson and Sullivan were in the bottom halves of their groups in the bench press drill. Carlson’s 20 was 10th best among TE’s while Sullivan’s 21 was 34th best. Last year Notre Dame’s big guys put up low numbers in the bench press as well which could say something about the strength and conditioning program at Notre Dame.
  • Sullivan’s vertical was 2nd best among the OL, but most of his other performances were towards the bottom of the offensive line group. His performance Saturday, combined with concerns over his snapping out of the shot gun could make a big impact on where he is selected. The talking heads on NFL Network were still high on Sullivan though and praised his athleticism.
  • Last year just 3 tight ends were taken on the first day of the draft, so some of these scouts fall in love with the raw athleticism of someone like Davis or Keller, it could mean a longer wait than originally expected for Carlson. Of course, that could become a moot point if Carlson performs better at Notre Dame’s Pro Day.
  • One thing Carlson did show Saturday, however, were some of the best hands of anyone there. While Fred Davis dropped a couple easy passes, Carlson was perfect in catching the ball and looked very smooth.
  • Tomorrow QBs and RBs go at the combine so there won’t be much ND related news. Trevor Laws and the other defensive linemen go Monday and Zibby and defensive backs go Tuesday.
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Note: the numbers in parenthesis in the table to the right are where those numbers ranked among the other prospects at each position. All results were found at


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One Comment

  1. I’ve never understood any of the hype around John Sullivan. His weaknesses were disguised during the Brady Quinn/Jeff Samardzija era by all the offensive talent around him. Then his weaknesses were excused during the horrid 2007 season because the talent around him wasn’t great. It seems like John Sullivan’s value is directly proportionate to the talent of the players around him.

    Now that Sullivan is on a stage where he is being judged on his merits alone, we are seeing how over-hyped this guy is. I think I could put up 21 in the bench press drill.

    I’m a diehard through and through, but I have never cared for Sullivan.

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