It's that time of year, ladies and gentlemen, a time where football fans spend three straight days on the couch watching men lift weights, talk and run short distances. That's right, the NFL Combine. And to help everyone out just a little bit, we're going to give you player profiles on notable Wake Forest players who are making their way to Indianapolis.
To start the series, we'll be highlighting what should be the Deacs' highest-drafted player come April. Chris Givens declared for the NFL Draft after Wake Forest's loss to Mississippi State in the Music City Bowl, having received a second-third round grade in the evaluation period.
Givens possesses a solid package for a wide receiver, and has a very good chance to make a splash this week.
Find more about the junior WR after the jump...Name: Chris Givens
2011 Season Stats: 83 REC, 1330 YDS, 9 TD
Givens was a classic Jim Grobe recruit. A phenomenally gifted track athlete, Givens played a lot of running back in high school before tearing both ACLs in back-to-back years, dropping him off a lot of teams' radars. The Deacs stuck with Givens, though, and he redshirted (as most Wake players do) before having a strong freshman season.
After a sophomore slump, CG3 broke through with a historic year for a Wake Forest receiver. He caught a ton of balls, consistently made plays downfield and ran good routes. He was a total threat for an offense that had largely sputtered the year before and was finally clicking behind sophomore quarterback Tanner Price
Givens does a little bit of everything well. He doesn't have superior size for his position, but he isn't too small to get the job done either. He likely will be playing the No. 2 or slot at the next level, so he is fine at his height. He has good leaping ability, and MCB abomination aside, he runs good routes and shows a propensity to go and get balls despite contact.
He is sneaky fast, and this is one of the areas he can make a big impact at the Combine. Givens didn't get a chance to flash his speed very often, as Wake doesn't take a ton of shots downfield, and if he can run in the 4.4.-4.5 range with his 40 time, his stock will rise. He ranked just outside of the top five in Mike Mayock's position rankings, and he knows that he needs a good combine performance to make his decision to declare early a good one. This is a situation in which motivation should not be a problem.
As long as Givens is healthy and focused, he has the metrics to turn some heads. I don't see him jumping up the board into the first round or anything, but he might able to do enough to get into that second-third range.
There are a lot of teams that need wide receivers, and Givens offers a low risk, moderate reward in a popular system in today's NFL. He can move around the field, playing in and out of the slot, and plays a lot like Pittsburgh wide receiver Antonio Brown (5'10, 186 lbs), who starred in his second season with the Steelers.