Spartan NFL Combine Report: Monday
Max Bullough is the second Spartan to test for on-field workouts; Isaiah Lewis auditioning in front of NFL scouts in his hometown.
Feb. 24, 2014
INDIANAPOLIS - Linebacker Max Bullough was the second Spartan to test for the on-field workouts at the NFL Scouting Combine on Monday at Lucas Oil Stadium.
A day after tying for the lead among linebackers in the bench press with 30 reps of 225 pounds, Bullough ranked 13th in the 20-yard shuttle with a time of 4.30 seconds and 15th in the three-cone drill with a time of 7.22 seconds. He also ran the 40-yard dash in 4.78 seconds. Bullough recorded a vertical jump of 31 inches and a broad jump of 112 inches.
"(Max) surely has the bloodlines on both sides of his family and the instincts," said former Indianapolis Colts president/general manager and current ESPN analyst Bill Polian. "He's got great experience. He's one of these guys that is going to come in the league, he's going to make a team, and he's going to play. Because of his instincts and his toughness, (Max) is going to get a job in the NFL and he's going to do well."
Isaiah Lewis GETS TO PERFORM IN HIS HOMETOWN: A native of Indianapolis, safety Isaiah Lewis is living a childhood dream this week as he gets to audition in front of NFL scouts in his own backyard. A three-year starter on the Big Ten's top-ranked defense the past three seasons, Lewis finished his career with 227 tackles, 18 pass break-ups and eight interceptions in 53 games, including 40 starts.
"I'm feeling great out here, just coming back and being home," said Lewis, who earned first-team All-Big Ten honors as a senior. "Having this opportunity to talk to all these coaches..., meeting some of the other players as well, just going out here and doing my best."
Lewis said there are a few things he wants to show the scouts on Tuesday. "Definitely my speed; there's a lot of doubt about my speed out there," commented Lewis. "And my size as well. I weighed in at 211 (pounds), to show them I have some size on me. When my 40 comes around, just run that fast time, that's all I gotta do."
The 5-10, 211-pound Lewis, who also participated in the Senior Bowl, gained a reputation at Michigan State for being able to come up with a big hit when needed.
"They've asked me what my best attribute is as a player, and that's one thing, my physicality and my toughness on the field, and my speed to the ball," Lewis said. The experts in Indianapolis agreed with Lewis' self-assessment.
"(Isaiah Lewis is a) very impressive player," said Polian. "He's got the one attribute you really look for in a safety: the ability to lay the wood to people. That is more and more critical in this day and age. As the game widens out and people are throwing the ball in the middle of the field with impunity, you need to have a safety that legally can knock people down, and he can.
"He has all of the benefits of having played for Mark (Dantonio) in that defense and in a pro style with the way they approach the game and the off-season program. So he is ready to play (at the next level)."
Sirius/XM NFL analyst and former Spartan Radio Network analyst Jim Miller also sees those same attributes in Lewis.
"He's a big hitter, and he's physical," Miller said. "He understands what they're trying to do defensively, and he'll find a niche in the National Football League. I don't know if he's going to start out as an everyday starter, but he's a guy that you can count on to contribute on all four special teams. Obviously, he can build his NFL career and maybe work his way to a starting role in the National Football League. Teams are very interested in him. It's a very deep draft at safety, but all you can ask for is an opportunity. If Isaiah Lewis gets that opportunity, he'll take advantage of it."
And Lewis' teammate of four years, Max Bullough, echoed those sentiments.
"When you talk about Isaiah, he's the guy that's going to come hit you, no matter who you are, no matter how big you are, or how far away you are," said Bullough. "He can cover, he's got interceptions. He's a guy that can do it all. He's one of the best people I know."
WHAT'S NEXT: Cornerback Darqueze Dennard and safety Isaiah Lewis will test in front of the scouts on the final day of the NFL Combine Tuesday, beginning at 9 a.m. Live coverage is available on the NFL Network and NFL.com. On Monday, Dennard and Lewis each benched 225 pounds 15 times.