A trio of Gophers and a Minnesota native invited to NFL Combine


Minnesota will be well represented in this month's NFL Combine in Indianapolis.

Three Gopher standouts were invited to the combine, as was a Minneapolis native, who played football just across the Red River at North Dakota State University.

Gophers running back David Cobb, tight end Maxx Williams and linebacker Damien Wilson were all invited to the "Underwear Olympics," which runs Feb. 17-23, at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.

Williams, the Gophers leading receiver in 2014, finishing with 36 catches for 569 yards and 8 touchdowns. He made several All-America teams and became the third sophomore ever to be named a Mackey Award Finalist. Following Minnesota's 33-17 Citrus Bowl loss to Missouri, Williams declared for the NFL Draft.

Cobb was Minnesota's main offensive threat. The senior set program single-season records with 314 carries for 1,626 yards. He also scored 13 touchdowns. Cobb cemented his NFL Draft status with an outstanding showing at the Senior Bowl.

Wilson was Minnesota's leading tackler, finishing the year with 119 stops – the most of any Gopher since Kim Royston's 123 in 2011. He also recorded a team-leading 10.5 tackles for loss, 4 sacks and an interception. Wilson won the Gophers' Carl Eller Award (most outstanding defensive player) and was selected to the media's All Big Ten First Team and the coaches All-Big Ten Second Team.

North Dakota State running back John Crockett was also invited to the Combine. Crockett had a huge season for the FCS National Champion Bison, rushing for 1,994 yards and 21 touchdowns. He continues a long line of NDSU players who have been invited to the Combine in recent years.

According to Bleacher Report, despite starring on one of the most dominant FCS teams in the country over the last four years, Crockett is the "biggest sleeper running back" in the draft.

"His patience and burst stand out on film. Crockett does a great job setting his blockers up and finding seams to expose. However, he has no problem using his agile feet and change of direction to improvise in a pinch, another aspect of his game that should be especially appealing to NFL teams."

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