Former LSU Tigers quarterback Joe Burrow will be one of the most eagerly anticipated players to arrive at the 2020 NFL Scouting Combine. But will he show off his skills? Matthew Emmons-USA TODAY Sports

The 2020 NFL Scouting Combine is right around the corner, and with it will come a flood of information as stars dominate the headlines.

Looking ahead to the annual gathering, there are some prospects who will clearly take over as the center of attention due to either their absurd physical traits or the storylines that already surround them heading into the 2020 NFL Draft.

These are the players who will be talked about the most during the NFL Scouting Combine, which takes place from Feb. 23 through March 2.

Joe Burrow, quarterback, LSU

Widely expected to be the No. 1 overall pick of the 2020 NFL Draft via the Cincinnati Bengals, Joe Burrow could show up for medicals and his interviews and call it good without any hit to his stock. Whether he does any of the drills, runs his 40 or throws for coaches and scouts matters not. This kid is going to be talked about from the start of the combine until it’s over, regardless.

But if Burrow does opt to compete, everything he does will be parsed and examined to the Nth degree. After pulling off one of the most legendary seasons in college football history, his stock can hardly go any higher. But if he shows out on the field and impresses during interviews, the buzz surrounding Burrow will grow even louder, and Bengals fans will grow even more desperate for their team to land him.

Ohio State Buckeyes defensive end Chase Young (2) against the Clemson Tigers during the 2019 Fiesta Bowl college football playoff semifinal game. Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Chase Young, EDGE, Ohio State

Speaking of hype, there hasn’t been a defender as hyped as Chase Young since Jadeveon Clowney came out of South Carolina in 2014. ESPN’s Todd McShay has already come out and declared that Young is better than both Joey Bosa and Nick Bosa, who was among the most dominant pass rushers this past season as a rookie for the San Francisco 49ers.

Just wait until Young — a physical marvel — hits the field and runs his 40 in shorts. Football fans everywhere are going to melt into a puddle of drool as they envision this young man spearheading their defense. Last season’s top sack master in college ball, despite missing two games due to suspension, Young has the kind of potential that can change a franchise.

Alabama Crimson Tide wide receiver Jerry Jeudy (4) makes a catch against the Michigan Wolverines during the second half at Camping World Stadium.  Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

Jerry Jeudy, wide receiver, Alabama

In the NFL, speed is one of the most treasured commodities around. And if you have speed plus are an outstanding receiver on top of that, the sky is the limit for what you can accomplish. Just ask Kansas City Chiefs star Tyreek Hill.

Speaking of speed, Jerry Jeudy has it, and there are rumors he may just blow the hinges off the combine with his 40 time.

Jeudy is more than just a set of wheels, though. He’s a highly skilled receiver who can take any play the distance, whether it be a five-yard slant or a deep post. Last year, Jeudy led the talented Alabama receiving corps with 77 receptions, which he turned into 1,163 yards and 10 touchdowns.

John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Isaiah Simmons, linebacker, Clemson

One of the most intriguing defenders in the 2020 NFL Draft, Clemson linebacker Isaiah Simmons doesn’t fit any conventional mold. He’s 6-foot-4, roughly 230 pounds and boasts incredible length. He’s also a sideline-to-sideline defender who has the potential to become an All-Pro coverage linebacker/safety hybrid at the next level.

Based on what he was able to do on the field for the Tigers the past few years, we’re expecting Simmons to absolutely slay the combine. He’ll almost certainly be among the top linebackers in explosion drills like the vertical, and it would be stunning if he’s not among the top when it comes to raw speed. You’ll hear Simmons’ name a lot in the coming weeks.

Colorado Buffaloes wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr. (2) celebrates after making a reception for a touchdown against the Washington Huskies. Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Laviska Shenault, wide receiver, Colorado 

There aren’t too many players in the NFL today who can do what Laviska Shenault is capable of doing for the right offense. A true “offensive weapon,” he is technically a receiver but Shenault can do serious damage as a runner and could be viewed as an upgrade to what Deebo Samuel was able to do as a rookie this past season for the San Francisco 49ers.

Set to compete at the combine after a determination was made that he will not need surgery for a groin injury, Shenault has the physical attributes to rank among the best of the best and boost his already-hot stock to new heights.

Alabama Crimson Tide quarterback Tua Tagovailoa (13) rolls out to pass against the Duke Blue Devils during the third quarter at Mercedes-Benz Stadium.  John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

Tua Tagovailoa, quarterback, Alabama

We already know that Tua Tagovailoa will not be cleared for football activities during the 2020 NFL Scouting Combine. Instead, the NFL community will be abuzz with the results of his medicals.

This past week, Tagovailoa got the best news possible during a checkup following surgery on his broken hip in November. He’s set to become one of the first players selected in the 2020 NFL Draft if that trend continues with a glowing report at the combine. Needless to say, everyone will be talking about Tagovailoa, regardless.

This article first appeared on Sportsnaut and was syndicated with permission.


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Can you name every Heisman Trophy winner since 1959?
2019 / LSU / QB
Joe Burrow
2018 / Oklahoma / QB
Kyler Murray
2017 / Oklahoma / QB
Baker Mayfield
2016 / Louisville / QB
Lamar Jackson
2015 / Alabama / RB
Derrick Henry
2014 / Oregon / QB
Marcus Mariota
2013 / Florida St. / QB
Jameis Winston
2012 / Texas A&M / QB
Johnny Manziel
2011 / Baylor / QB
Robert Griffin III
2010 / Auburn / QB
Cam Newton
2009 / Alabama / RB
Mark Ingram
2008 / Oklahoma / QB
Sam Bradford
2007 / Florida / QB
Tim Tebow
2006 / Ohio State / QB
Troy Smith
2005 / USC / RB
Reggie Bush
2004 / USC / QB
Matt Leinart
2003 / Oklahoma / QB
Jason White
2002 / USC / QB
Carson Palmer
2001 / Nebraska / QB
Eric Crouch
2000 / Florida State / QB
Chris Weinke
1999 / Wisconsin / RB
Ron Dayne
1998 / Texas / RB
Ricky Williams
1997 / Michigan / CB
Charles Woodson
1996 / Florida / QB
Danny Wuerffel
1995 / Ohio State / RB
Eddie George
1994 / Colorado / RB
Rashaan Salaam
1993 / Florida State / QB
Charlie Ward
1992 / Miami / QB
Gino Torretta
1991 / Michigan / WR/KR
Desmond Howard
1990 / BYU / QB
Ty Detmer
1989 / Houston / QB
Andre Ware
1988 / Oklahoma St. / RB
Barry Sanders
1987 / Notre Dame / WR
Tim Brown
1986 / Miami / QB
Vinny Testaverde
1985 / Auburn / RB
Bo Jackson
1984 / Boston College / QB
Doug Flutie
1983 / Nebraska / RB
Mike Rozier
1982 / Georgia / RB
Herschel Walker
1981 / USC / RB
Marcus Allen
1980 / South Carolina / RB
George Rogers
1979 / USC / RB
Charles White
1978 / Oklahoma / RB
Billy Sims
1977 / Texas / RB
Earl Campbell
1976 / Pittsburgh / RB
Tony Dorsett
1975 / Ohio State / RB
Archie Griffin
1974 / Ohio State / RB
Archie Griffin
1973 / Penn State / RB
John Cappelletti
1972 / Nebraska / WR/RB
Johnny Rodgers
1971 / Auburn / QB
Pat Sullivan
1970 / Stanford / QB
Jim Plunkett
1969 / Oklahoma / RB
Steve Owens
1968 / USC / RB
O.J. Simpson
1967 / UCLA / QB
Gary Beban
1966 / Florida / QB
Steve Spurrier
1965 / USC / HB
Mike Garrett
1964 / Notre Dame / QB
John Huarte
1963 / Navy / QB
Roger Staubach
1962 / Oregon State / QB
Terry Baker
1961 / Syracuse / HB
Ernie Davis
1960 / Navy / HB
Joe Bellino
1959 / LSU / HB
Billy Cannon

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