One issue relates to the manner in which the 40-yard dash is timed.
Several of you have expressed to us dismay that Clemson running back C.J. Spiller covered the 120 feet in unofficial times under 4.3 seconds, and that his official time somehow was 4.37 seconds.
A source with knowledge of the situation tells us that multiple scouts had Spiller below 4.3 seconds on their own stopwatches. So while the teams will have their own opinion as to Spiller’s speed, the unofficial time will remain north of 4.3 seconds.
Though in the end that distinction might matter only to Titans running back Chris Johnson, who can continue to boast that he’s one of the rare tailbacks to officially rack up a time faster than 4.3, the disparity between team measurements and the official number is just another one of the imperfections of the unscientific process for determining whether guys will be good football players based on their participation in activities other than, you know, playing football.
The process only gets more interesting when players run at their Pro Day workouts, with scouts often adding time based on the specific surface on which the players run.