NFL Combine: What to know about the Ohio State players who will participate

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Combined ShapeCaption
Ohio State receivers approve of new starting QB C.J. Stroud

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Ohio State is set to have seven representatives at the NFL Scouting Combine, which returns to Indianapolis this year after going virtual last year.

All seven are fairly certain to get drafted, and they could all be taken in the first half of the draft.

ExploreOverall preview of the combine

What they did on the field for 3-5 years will have the most to do with that, but what they do in Indianapolis might also determine how soon each player hears his name called.

Here is a look at each one at this point in the draft process:

Garrett Wilson, receiver

Listed at 6-foot, 192 lbs. at Ohio State, Wilson does not have ideal measurable, but he does have plenty of observables: His ball skills, quickness and agility are all easy to see when he takes the field. A five-star recruit who lived up to his billing, Wilson caught 70 passes for 1,058 yards and 12 touchdowns in 11 games last season. He knows how to get open, and he can return punts.

Wilson has a chance to be taken in the first half of the first round, and the better he tests the more likely that will be. He is not as thick and physical or purely fast as Bengals rookie Ja’Marr Chase, but Wilson has shown clearly he knows how to play the position and get open.

NFL Network analyst Daniel Jeremiah lists Wilson the No. 19 overall prospect.

Pro Football Focus rank: 13th

The Athletic top 100: 11th

Chris Olave, receiver

The 6-1, 188-lb. senior is bigger than Wilson but also not the prototypical thick, powerful athlete that has become more prevalent at the position over the years. A high-achiever despite arriving as an under-the-radar recruit, Olave’s tape shows a guy who can get open all over the field and track the deep ball, so he is also likely someone who can only help himself with a big combine performance.

While Jeremiah has him two spots ahead of Wilson overall, NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein compares Olave to former Buckeye Terry McLaurin and praised his overall ability to play the position despite questions about play strength and physicality as a blocker.

PFF rank: 19th

The Athletic: 25th

Jeremy Ruckert, tight end

Ruckert was a highly regarded recruit who had a solid career at Ohio State and enters this portion of the draft process considered a potential NFL starter and one of the top three available in the draft.

A sold all-around player but not great at anything in particular, the 6-5, 250-pounder could open eyes with workouts and improve his stock.

PFF rank: 109

The Athletic: 63

Thayer Munford, offensive lineman

Munford endured a rocky road to Ohio State but became a success story as a three-year starter, team captain and college graduate.

He was a standout left tackle for three seasons before moving last season to left guard, where he was less of a force but scored points for versatility and selflessness.

ESPN’s Mel Kiper Jr. and PFF both rank Munford 10th among guards, but NFL.com’s Zierlein writes as if he remains a better prospect at tackle because he is a better pass blocker than run blocker and has displayed a stronger upper body than lower body.

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Combined ShapeCaption
Ohio State's Thayer Munford on Michigan, Rose Bowl

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

PFF rank: 132

Nicholas Petit-Frere, offensive lineman

Another five-star recruit and multi-year starter, Petit-Frere should test well because athleticism has always been his top asset. He has the frame of an NFL tackle but is still growing into his body and might have been served to stay in school to continue adding strength after struggling against elite pass rushers from Michigan and Penn State last season.

PFF rank: 88 (13th OT)

The Athletic rank: 89

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Combined ShapeCaption
WATCH: Nicholas Petit-Frere talks about Ohio State-Michigan

Credit: DaytonDailyNews

Tyreke Smith, defensive lineman

A four-star recruit who played at 6-3, 265 at Ohio State, Smith displayed great quickness and an ability to get into the backfield, but finishing plays was not his strength. He might need to show he can play outside linebacker in the NFL, so the chance to interview with and work out first-hand for NFL scouts should be very valuable for him in finding a niche.

PFF rank: 131

Haskell Garrett, defensive lineman

Garrett was another big-time recruit who needed time to find his role at Ohio State. That was as a penetrating 3-technique, and Zierlein identifies the 6-2, 300-pounder as a scheme-specific player as a result. After an All-American junior season, he played with some injuries last year and was not as productive, so the combine offers a big opportunity to show what he can do athletically.

Interior pass rushers have become more important in recent years, so Garrett should have plenty of market for his services.

PFF rank: 142

About the Author