“I think I did pretty well,” said Mandell. “I worked really hard to get ready for the combine and I felt good. I just wish some people here would have been willing to time me and measure my jump.”
When Mandell’s name was called for the 40, his position of punter was also announced, and an audible groan was heard from the stands where scouts and coaches sit. One voice was clearly heard saying: “Doooooon’t caaaaaarrrre.” Another person said: “Excuse me. This is a good time to go take a dump.” Mandell then ran his 40 and no time flashed on the board. He asked a combine staffer if the clock had malfunctioned and if he should run again.
“You can run again if you want, I guess,” said the staffer. “But we’re shutting the clock down right now for routine maintenance.”
“Well, when will the maintenance be over?” asked Mandell.
“Whenever you leave and the real players come,” he was told.
Mandell then went to do his vertical leap and says he hit 27 inches on his best leap.
“They didn’t write it down, though,” he said. “I told them: ‘Look right there. It says 27 inches.’ But the guy told me there was no way he was going to put in the effort to lift up his head and focus his eyes for a punter. He said he was on break.”
Despite the lack of interest he received at the combine, scouts say Mandell does have a shot at getting drafted.
“I can’t speak for everyone, but for me,” said one NFL scout, “our evaluation of him is probably going to hinge exclusively on how good he is at, you know, punting.”
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