Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 4/10/13
There are plenty of prospects in the NFL draft that will be projects upon entering the league. But none may be more raw or have more upside than Lawrence Okoye. The former British rugby player and Olympic discus thrower ran a 4.78-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Super Regional Combine in Dallas this weekend at 6-foot-6, 308 pounds, according to NFL Draft Scout. He also posted a 10-foot-5 broad jump and a 35-inch vertical leap. His 6.69 3-cone time would top the next best player at his size by nearly half a second. That time would have earned him a Top 10 finish among all players at the NFL scouting combine at Indianapolis this year. Okoye previously said that NFL teams view him as a defensive end. Legendary scout Gil Brandt, now writing for NFL.com, believes Okoye could be a late-round draft pick despite never playing the sport. With Okoye’s size, he could also be viewed as an offensive tackle. His workout numbers compare favorably to Lane Johnson, a 6-foot-6, 303-pound tackle out of Oklahoma. He ran a 4.69-second 40-yard dash with a 9-foot-10 broad jump and 34-inch vertical leap. Johnson ran a 7.31-second 3-cone time. There are no defensive ends or defensive tackles in this draft with Okoye’s combination of height, weight and speed. Florida’s Sharrif Floyd comes closest at 6-foot-3, 297 pounds. He ran a 4.87-second 40-yard dash with an 8-foot-10 broad jump, 30-inch vertical jump and 7.40-second 3-cone time. As if Okoye’s athleticism isn’t impressive enough, he also turned down an offer to study law at Oxford University in favor of entering the Olympics. Okoye finished 12th in discus at the London Olympics with a 61.03-meter throw despite holding the British world record of 68.24 meters. Photo via Facebook/Lawrence Okoye
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