By Tim Graham
Whether or not they can score touchdowns on a consistent basis is unknown, but if a track meet ever breaks out at Ralph Wilson Stadium, you can expect the Buffalo Bills to win some medals.
For the second year in a row, the Bills drafted a smallish track-and-field receiver in the third round. They selected Olympic long jumper Marquise Goodwin from Texas tonight. They traded up last year to draft North Carolina State sprinter T.J. Graham.
Goodwin ran the fastest 40-yard dash at this year's NFL scouting combine, clocking in at 4.27 seconds. It was the second-fastest combine time since Chris Johnson set the record at 4.24 seconds in 2000.
On a conference call with Bills reporters tonight, Goodwin said he has run the 40 in 4.17 and 4.19 seconds (hand-held times).
Goodwin placed 10th in the long jump at last summer's London Games. His best leap was 25 feet, 7.25 inches.
Goodwin caught only 26 passes for 340 yards and three touchdowns last season, but he insisted he's not a track guy who happens to play football. For example, his scouting report notes that, despite being 5-foot-9, he's a terrific blocker. He also ran 13 times for 140 yards and three touchdowns last year.
"People definitely underestimate me as a complete football player," Goodwin said. "They just think I'm some fast guy that went to the Olympics. That's definitely not the case."
Graham and Goodwin are unpolished players, but their athleticism will be a concern for any opponent when on the field with second-round pick Robert Woods, Stevie Johnson and running back C.J. Spiller.
"We're looking, really, for those playmakers," Bills coach Doug Marrone said. "We're looking for when you send a group on the field, [defenders] are worried about getting behind them. People are worried about doing things in the slot.
"Putting weapons out on that field, people have to think about 'How are we going to defend them?' How many corners are we going to put on the field? How many linebackers? How are we going to match up against them?' "
tagged2013 draft | 2013 NFL scouting combine | C.J. Spiller | Doug Marrone | Marquise Goodwin | Robert Woods | Stevie Johnson | T.J. Graham