Okung finishes what he started at NFL combine

Russell Okung got a chance to finish what he started at the NFL


The standout left tackle for Oklahoma State was the star

attraction at the school’s pro day Wednesday for 40 representatives

from 27 NFL teams, including general managers from the Detroit

Lions, Buffalo Bills and San Francisco 49ers.

“I like him a lot,” Pittsburgh Steelers scout Joe Greene said.

“Russell is a good player. He’s got the size. He’s got the length,

the athletic ability to play the position. He just needs to get a

football team now.”

At the NFL combine in Indianapolis, Okung ran the 40-yard dash

in 5.17 seconds and had 38 repetitions in the 225-pound bench

press, the second-highest total among offensive linemen. But he

suffered a minor groin injury and skipped four other drills – the

vertical jump, broad jump, three-cone drill and shuttle run.

Saying he is healed and with his groin area wrapped, he

performed those four drills Wednesday, recording a vertical jump of

32 1/2 inches and a broad jump of 8 feet, 9 inches – both of which

would have ranked him in the top 10 at his position had he done

them at the combine.

His times in the other two drills weren’t immediately available.

He skipped the bench press and the 40-yard dash.

“I don’t really see the point in an offensive lineman running

out 40 yards unless you’re about to knock off a safety,” he said.

“You don’t really get that opportunity a lot, so the 40 really

just wasn’t that important to me.”

The 6-foot-6, 310-pound All-American Okung started 47 straight

games for the Cowboys, who finished 9-4 last season.

“I really haven’t been trying to separate myself

individually,” Okung said after the workout. “I’m just trying to

go out there and do what I do best … and compete. If they like

what they see, they like what they see.”

Okung also performed position drills with other Oklahoma State

linemen. After he was finished, he and his agent spoke briefly on

the field with Buffalo general manager Buddy Nix, whose team has

the ninth overall pick in next month’s draft. Also attending the

workout were San Francisco general manager Scot McCloughan, whose

team drafts 16th, and Detroit general manager Martin Mayhew, whose

team drafts second.

“I think I’m a person that’s willing to accept the pressure

that’s going to be put on me,” Okung said. “That’s become kind of

natural … through the whole season. You’ve got a big old target

on your back so you definitely have to welcome all the


Cowboys receiver Dez Bryant opted to skip the workout in favor

of a solo outing later this month. Bryant, also projected as a

first-round prospect, played in only three games last season before

he was suspended after lying to an NCAA investigator about his

relationship with former NFL star Deion Sanders.

Another high-round draft prospect, cornerback Perrish Cox, was

banned from the workout by Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy. Gundy

also had suspended Cox from playing in the Jan. 1 Cotton Bowl.

Quarterback Zac Robinson, who by most accounts had a solid

outing at the NFL combine, threw again for scouts Wednesday.

Robinson said a shoulder injury that he suffered on Nov. 14 against

Texas Tech has healed. Robinson was overshadowed during his career

by other standout Big 12 Conference quarterbacks including

Oklahoma’s Sam Bradford and Texas’ Colt McCoy but is hopeful an NFL

team will take a chance on him.

“It was just a matter of getting my strength back in my …

shoulder and just letting it rip like I used to,” Robinson said.

“They said they saw everything they needed and I feel really good

about it. I’ve just got to keep working.”