Houston's Own

Local products look to shine at NFL Combine

Duke Ejiofor of Alief Taylor made name for himself at Wake Forest. vype.com

Originally appeared on Vype.com

 

Football never sleeps in Houston.

It’s offseason at the high school and college levels, but for the professionals, it’s time to train and position themselves for the NFL Draft.

The city of Houston has several athletes trying to navigate their way through the stressful and exciting time of finally getting to make financial gains for the work their hard work over the past decade.

Looking closer at the NFL Draft, it’s fascinating where the top prospects come from. Three former Alief Taylor Lions make up a third of the HTown kids invited to the NFL combine.

How is that possible? Kudos to the Alief Taylor staff for getting their guys ready for college, and all play on the defensive side of the ball.

Just five miles down the road is FB Bush, the home of Toledo DE Aneniyi Olasunkanmi. Staying in Fort Bend is Elkins’ WR J’Mon Moore, who balled out at Missouri.

Defensive backs Holton Hill (Lamar) and Jordan Thomas (Klein Collins) are likely Day 3 or free agent prospects, but got the coveted invite to the combine.

North Shore’s Dorance Armstrong is another rangy DE who played at Kansas of all places.

Joining Moore on the offensive side of the ball is LSU OL Toby Weathersby, formerly of Westfield.

 

NFL COMBINE INVITES

 

ADENIYI OLASUNKANMI, FB BUSH

Toledo, DE

He was a second-team, All-MAC with 66 tackles and 20 tackles for loss. He projects anywhere from 3rd to 6th round status. He could help himself with a great combine, but his size at 6-foot-1 could hurt him.

 

DORANCE ARMSTRONG, NORTH SHORE

Kansas, DE

Explosive edge-rusher who balled out at Kansas. But Kansas? He will need to gain some weight entering the NFL and will need to show that at the combine. He can run and has a great motor and work ethic. Projected in the late second to fifth round.

 

DUKE EJIOFOR, ALIEF TAYLOR

Wake Forest, DL

Was a stud at an improved Wake Forest team. Had 6.5 sacks and is athletic enough to play on the edge and even help on the inside. Had a great junior season as well. At 6-foot-4, 270-pounds, he has the NFL body.

 

HOLTON HILL, LAMAR

Texas, DB

He was suspended the last three games of the year at UT. At 6-foot-3, he has great size for the NFL but the sample size of him on the field is small. Someone will take a flier on Hill but not likely until the 5th round or as a free agent.

 

JOSHUA KALU, ALIEF TAYLOR

Nebraska, DB

Kalu is a good-sized safety, but needs to work on his speed. He’s physical and is a tackling machine. He needs a good time at the combine. Kalu will likely be in the 5-7 rounds. He played four years at Nebraska and tallied 215 tackles with 7 picks.

 

J’MON MOORE, ELKINS

Missouri, WR

Moore had 1,000 yards receiving in 2018 and 10 scores as Mizzou’s top wide out. At 6-foot-2, he is a nice-sized target but must improve his 4.54 time. It’s not a great receiver class so he has a shot to get drafted, but it will be late.

 

OGBONNIA OKORONKWO, ALIEF TAYLOR

Oklahoma, OLB

Had 8 sacks and 76 tackles on one of the top teams in the country. He is needing more athleticism to play on the edge, but will make a team. It’s going to be a late selection like 3rd-5th rounds.

 

JORDAN THOMAS, KLEIN COLLINS

Oklahoma, DB

Being a four-year starter at OU is saying something. He had 8 career INTs but didn’t have a great senior season. He played in the pass-happy Big 12 and will need to tighten up his cover skills. He’s a projected free agent pick up.

 

TOBY WEATHERSBY, WESTFIELD

LSU, OL

Played a ton for a solid LSU offensive line. He will likely play guard at the next level and is a good run-blocker. Pretty good athleticism and strength. He will be a 5th rounder to free agent.

 

OTHERS OF NOTE

 

Jeremiah Briscoe, Stratford

Sam Houston, QB

The Two-Time Payton Award winner for FCS Player of the Year. Basically the Heisman Trophy winner in FCS.

 

Jarrett Johnson, Seven Lakes

Texas A&M, DE

Had a solid career at Texas A&M, which is not known for defense. He as upside as he continues to grow.

 

Du’Vonta Lampkin, Cy Falls

Oklahoma, DT

Lampkin had a solid season but most pundits say he should have returned to the Sooners. Due to his size and upside, someone will take a chance on him in free-agency.

 

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