NFL combine: Which prospects will rise?

Florida defensive end Carlos Dunlap will be among the most-watched players at the NFL Combine. (Ed Reinke/AP file photo)

Welcome to Combine Week.

On Wednesday, the annual NFL meat-market begins as over 300 college prospects head to Indianapolis for a few days of medical testing, interviews and physical workouts.

It's essentially a job fair for a bunch of guys in their early 20s, who have aspirations of playing in the league. Some have goals to be future Super Bowl champs and Hall of Famers. Others just want to hear their name called in late April, even if it's at the end of the seventh round.

We have the combine covered on Sports. Last week, I shot a video preview with Wes Bunting, director of college scouting at the National Football Post. We'll try to do some more of these leading up to the draft so your feedback is welcome.

On Monday, Les Bowen of the Daily News will chat all things Eagles/combine/draft/free agency over at Eagletarian. And on Wednesday, Jeff McLane of the Inquirer will chat it up on Birds' Eye View.

Plus, we'll have photos, reports and more from Indy once the event gets under way.

In the mean time, here's a short Q&A with Wes:

Q: Who's an offensive player who could impress in Indy?

A: Mike Williams, WR, Syracuse. When I watched tape of him this year, he's a big, physical guy. Goes up and gets the football as well as anyone in the draft. However, in 2007, he was kicked off the team because of academic issues. Came back this past year and decided to quit the team about halfway through. One of the top wide receivers in this year's draft. He's going to test out extremely well. However, the biggest concern with him is: Can he impress during the interview process with NFL teams? He's a guy that's not going to be on every team's draft board. However, the talent is there, a Brandon Marshall-type guy. If he can impress during the interview process, his name could really soar.

Q: What about on defense?

A: You have to look at the defensive end class of juniors. [South Floirda's] Jason Pierre-Paul, [Florida's] Carlos Dunlap. Pierre-Paul's a big 6-6, 265-pound guy with gorilla-like arms. Carlos Dunlap, 6-6, 290. These guys are going to test extremely well. There are some questions about Dunlap. Has a tendency to take plays off. Pierre-Paul is very raw, but these are two physically gifted specimens, and when you put them on the track, they're going to run well. They're going to work out well. Really talented guys who could catapult their draft stock with good workouts.

Check out the video for more from Wes, including his thoughts on Sam Bradford and Tim Tebow, along with an assessment of how important the combine is in terms of the overall evaluation of a player. And you can read his recent work at NFP, includng a take on USC safety Taylor Mays.

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