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Griffin’s official hand-held 40 times are all below 4.4 seconds


Of all the events of the recently-completed Scouting Combine (even Mike Silver has “borrowed” our “Underwear Olympic” label), none attracts more attention than the activity that occurs on a football field only when something very good — or very bad — is happening:  Running 40 yards in a straight line.

In Indy, the exercise gets measured both electronically and by hand.  Inevitably, the electronic times are a bit slower.  The hand-held times consistently seem to be a little faster.

For Robert Griffin III, his official electronic time came in at 4.41 seconds.  A source with knowledge of the official hand-held numbers tells PFT that, in every instance, Griffin was under 4.4.

The official hand-held measurements range from 4.33 to 4.38 seconds, blazing fast at any position but incredibly fast for a quarterback.

Though the number tends to be a bit overblown, especially since the player isn’t wearing a helmet or pads, that kind of speed can be the difference between Mike Vick and Vince Young.

Both Vick and Young could consistently elude defenders when moving vertically at the college level.  In the NFL, Vick’s highest gear allowed him to sprint past pro-caliber defensive backs.  Young couldn’t, and as a result he took too many hits after heading north (or south), which invited too many leg injuries.

Thus, that kind of speed can be a blessing and a curse.  For Vick, he didn’t acquire much/any patience in the pocket until he landed in Philly.  Even now, he still remains too quick to abandon his progression and rely on his ability to get separation from the men who are chasing him.  Which, given that he is slower than he used to be, exposes him to injury too frequently.

The challenge for Griffin’s first NFL coaching staff will come from how best to control and utilize his uncanny God-given speed.

There are far worse challenges to have.

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48 Responses to “Griffin’s official hand-held 40 times are all below 4.4 seconds”
  1. paleandpasty says: Mar 1, 2012 5:35 PM

    Griffin has something that Vick and Young doesn’t have, intelligence.

  2. skito13 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:39 PM

    Place your bids boys!!! Ram ransom…

  3. sportsmeccabi says: Mar 1, 2012 5:40 PM

    Quit bring up the Mike Vick and Vince Young comparisons. This guy is a way better passer than both of them.

  4. Nick says: Mar 1, 2012 5:40 PM

    In the case of Vick vs. Young, Vick’s success breaking away from defenders comes from his quickness and ability to change direction. Young couldn’t shake defenders the way Vick could. Breakaway speed is important but less so than cutting, Right?

  5. FinFan68 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:41 PM

    Why would subjective “hand-held” times be considered over the electronic ones? Machines do not anticipate and therefor would not stop early.

  6. sadskinsfan89 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:42 PM

    please pull the trigger shanahan and make this trade happen. the redskins need rg3

  7. ginop7690 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:43 PM

    I prey he doesn’t go to the Vikings. Pass rushing teams like the Lions will be neturalized in some ways against a player like Griffin. Thats of course he is a adequate passer at the NFL level.

  8. peytonsneck18 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:46 PM

    OVERATED QB!!! Will never win a superbowl or even get to one!! Mark my words

  9. doresb21 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:47 PM

    cool, another story about the 2nd best qb in the draft. How about something on the guy who will be going #1? You know , the guy that will actually be a good nfl qb ? thanks

  10. cowboyhater says: Mar 1, 2012 5:47 PM

    Not sure why they continue to talk about Griffin as a run first QB. He is a pocket passer with gifted speed. He only runs when he needs to. He does his progressions as any pocket passing QB. Let’s stop thinking all he is going to do is panic in pocket and take off running. Shanny, don’t disappoint. Go get this kid. Give up the 1st rounders to St Louis, and get the deal done.

  11. kmdp4 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:50 PM

    You don’t need to control RGIII’s speed because unlike Vick, RGIII is a passing QB who can also run but only does so as a last resort. Maybe if you watched him play and look at his stats you would know this.

    RGIII is a much better passer then Young or Vikc ever have been.

  12. jamaltimore says: Mar 1, 2012 5:51 PM

    I like Vick and he’s had a decent NFL career. Young is notch above a bust so I’m not sure this is such a good comparison. I can remember when Kyle Boller could throw the ball 50 yards from his knees. How did that work out and the point? None of this really means anything for a quarterback and when you add the redskins into the mix with RGIII the bust meter definitely starts to move to red.

  13. contra74 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:53 PM

    Of all the events of the recently-completed Scouting Combine (even Mike Silver has “borrowed” our “Underwear Olympic” label),
    Hate to burst your bubble but it was called the Underwear Olympics long before you guys thought up of it.

  14. gdeli says: Mar 1, 2012 5:53 PM


  15. supremeomega says: Mar 1, 2012 5:53 PM

    Big RG3 fan…

    But too much is made of his 40 time. 4.3 speed is nothing if he is on crutches which is exactly what will happen if he doesn’t throw from the pocket.

    His speed should help on third downs bootlegs and in the red zone but he must limit his running!

  16. ajknox88 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:54 PM

    Here come the Raiders jokes

    side note: thats insane

  17. jacunn2000 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:55 PM

    Speed of Vick and the character of Tebow. Not to shabby.

  18. anactualnflowner says: Mar 1, 2012 5:56 PM

    Math nerd here…

    For those of you thinking that people are over-analyzing his 40-yard-dash, consider this.

    At the average speed of a 40 completed in 4.38 seconds, the runner travels a distance of a little over 3 inches for every 100th of a second. The distance of a 4.33 to a 4.38 is nearly a foot and a half.

    That is not even considering that the runner starts from a dead stop. The average speed towards the end of the run is considerably faster and the distance between a 4.33 to 4.38 is probably closer to 3 feet, which could be just out of reaching distance in a game that we constantly refer to as a “game of inches”.

  19. slobberknockered says: Mar 1, 2012 5:56 PM

    NOT to mention that the Black QBs NEVER get good WRs, not to mention serviceable TEs.. Who were these QBs WRs or TEs: Randall, Moon, Pep, Vick, McNabb, McNair, VY, Batch (in Rock City), Russell, Jason Campbell, Vince Evans, Lefty, Marlin Briscoe, etc… Other than T.O., Mason? Celek? who were the playmaking WRs or TEs?…..Anyone…Anyone…Bueller.

  20. escoboltsfan says: Mar 1, 2012 6:09 PM

    “Griffin has something Vick and Young DOESN’T have, intelligence.” paleandpasty that was intentional right? I hope so.

  21. beauregard says: Mar 1, 2012 6:10 PM

    What we are witnessing is the evolution of the NFL Quarterback position. For decades the norm has been the drop back pocket passer. The position is slowly evolving into an more athletic and mobile position that can attack defenses in many new ways. It started with Vick and and Young. Next came the crazy but sometimes very effective Tebow. Then came Cam Newton with unreal skills. Now Griffin with sub 4.4 times.

    In five short years what once worked on defense in the NFL is quickly becoming obsolete. Next you will see a whole new breed of defenders who can adapt to the entirely new offensive schemes. Brady style QB’s will become dinosaurs in the near future. This will include Andrew Luck.

  22. KIR says: Mar 1, 2012 6:18 PM

    peytonsneck18 says: Mar 1, 2012 5:46 PM

    OVERATED QB!!! Will never win a superbowl or even get to one!! Mark my words

    peytonsneck18 says: Feb 26, 2012 1:34 PM

    Can folks leave race out of it!!!! I’m a Colts fan and we all know how infatuated Irsay is with Luck. RG3 to Browns and rest of drafts falls in place. And folks please put your crystals ball down and hang up on from the physhic hotline cause nobody will know if Luck a bust til several years in the NFL. Give it a rest folks!

  23. hooterdawg says: Mar 1, 2012 6:21 PM


  24. nflfollower says: Mar 1, 2012 6:29 PM

    Since when do we call any hand-held times “official”? I thought only electronic times were official.

    And along those lines, what’s the difference between an “official” hand-held time and an “unofficial” hand held time? The guy timing it looks down and says “Yup—that one’s definitely official”…….and that makes it official?

  25. auburntigers34 says: Mar 1, 2012 6:35 PM

    you didn’t coin the term “Underwear Olympics”. but go ahead and keep trying to claim it. it’s a lame term and i doubt that many people would find it hard to believe that someone as lame as yourself came up with it.

  26. ortonwhiskeycrew says: Mar 1, 2012 6:39 PM

    beauregard says:
    ….Then came Cam Newton with unreal skills….. Brady style QB’s will become dinosaurs in the near future. This will include Andrew Luck.

    You realize that Andrew Luck has the same 40 speed, vertical, and broad jump that Cam has right??? Apparently not.

  27. slickmarine says: Mar 1, 2012 6:39 PM


    “ will see a whole new breed of defenders who can adapt to the entirely new offensive schemes. Brady style QB’s will become dinosaurs in the near future. This will include Andrew Luck.”

    I don’t know why you lumped Luck into the same category as Brady. If you watched Luck at the Combine, you know that his long jump, vertical jump, and 40-yard times are surprisingly close to Cam Newton’s. Not at ALL like ‘Leadfoot” Tom Brady or the pocket-passing icon that was Peyton Manning.

  28. jakek2 says: Mar 1, 2012 6:40 PM

    Trade up Skins. The Giants D-Line could use some fresh food.

  29. laserw says: Mar 1, 2012 6:54 PM

    Griffin should not be drafted as a QB – he can’t read defenses and won’t stay in the pocket to read his progressions.

    Griffin should be converted to a wide receiver and drafted in the second half of the first round.

    He will be an utter failure as a QB.

  30. kd75 says: Mar 1, 2012 6:56 PM

    The difference between a 4.41 and a 4.39 over 40 yards is two one hundreths of one second…That’s an Eye Blink.

    The most expenseve (still shot) cameras in the world have a shutter time greater than 0.02 seconds.

    It won’t make much, if any, difference on a football field. How often in a career will any QB run 40+ yards in a straight line with nobody trying to tackle them???

  31. babyhorsemorgan says: Mar 1, 2012 6:56 PM

    Gruesome dodged the events that were meaningful in terms of a quarterback though. The agility drills. Requiring your brain to move your body in constantly changing directions with dexterity. He isn’t elusive at all in the pocket if you watch his film. So unless he gets a 10 yard clear lane to run in, his long speed is quite pointless. If he tries that, and doesn’t quite make it around the corner, it will take several trips to get all of his body parts off the field. The way he is built.

  32. ezmoover says: Mar 1, 2012 6:58 PM

    Robert Griffin = Randall Cunningham

  33. babyhorsemorgan says: Mar 1, 2012 7:06 PM

    The two best running quarterbacks at the moment are Newton and Tebow, but if you watch them, they are almost never running full speed. They change pace, slip, and slide, to get their yards. Straight sprinter speed only comes into play if they have a clear path. Which is almost never the case.

  34. maximusprime107 says: Mar 1, 2012 7:13 PM


    You obviously haven’t seen Griffin play
    thanks for using the stereotype of black quarterbacks

  35. dpbrew says: Mar 1, 2012 7:21 PM

    laserw, utter failure? how do you do it man? Forget about RG3, what about Microsofts’ sales forecasts for the next quarter? thats only a few mos. into the future, shouldnt be too difficult for you.

  36. racksie says: Mar 1, 2012 7:26 PM

    Until that first hit in pre-season. Highly overrated. These guys will be a second slower before they take an official snap in the NFL.

  37. mrslay1 says: Mar 1, 2012 7:34 PM

    I’ve seen griffin play plenty and he will be a bust, if that is what you call not being elite at QB in the NFL. Every one in the NFL is a great player or they would never have got there to start with. That of coarse has nothing to do with being black, white or purple. It just is what it is.

  38. giants56 says: Mar 1, 2012 7:53 PM

    With regard to the evolution of the QB..The last “running” QB to win a SB was Steve Young in 1995.

  39. gb8534 says: Mar 1, 2012 8:17 PM

    I am a huge RG3 fan and think he will be a very good QB in the NFL. That said he is no where near as quick laterally as Vick, Newton or even Young and actually dont think he will be all that effective as a runner in the NFL. Frankly, as it has been said he really shouldnt be compared to those guys.

  40. pixelito says: Mar 1, 2012 9:32 PM

    Unless Griffin’s going to be running the option, what does speed have to do with playing QB?

    Could any NFL GM quote the 40 time of Peyton, Eli, Ben, or anyone QB who’s won a Superbowl recently?

  41. drew05 says: Mar 1, 2012 9:44 PM

    Worthless…a QB’s 40 time.

    I’m an Eagles fan…I’ve seen the best running QB’s ever…

    It’s the least important attribute a QB can have.

    Go Eagles.

  42. drew05 says: Mar 1, 2012 9:47 PM

    This RG3 looks like he has “BUST” written all over him…and no, I don’t mean one in the HoF.

    I’d never heard of him until a few weeks into the 2011 collegiate season. Though I admit, I pay little attention to the NCAA.

  43. killerskrew says: Mar 1, 2012 10:10 PM

    Unfortunately, RG3 will try to accomplish something that only 1 Black QB has ever done in the NFL, win a Super Bowl as a starter. There has been a ton of athletic / talented black QB’s to play in the NFL, but they only seem to make highlight plays on ESPN, not win NFL championships. They may “look” good, but they don’t end the year with the trophy. Will he be any different?

  44. thetooloftools says: Mar 1, 2012 10:11 PM

    drew05: when we put a section in here for children, you’ll fit right in. Why are you even commenting?
    RG III only won the Heisman.

  45. rcali says: Mar 1, 2012 10:33 PM

    Speed is pretty important at the QB position, just ask Super Bowl champs Brady, Peyton, Eli, Brees, Rogers, Roethlisberger …..stop me when you get bored….

  46. neko02011980 says: Mar 1, 2012 11:30 PM

    Why does a 40 time matter, the guy plays qb He won’t make it in the nfl. Too aerogant, to much of a punk.

  47. drew05 says: Mar 1, 2012 11:50 PM

    thetooloftools says:
    Mar 1, 2012 10:11 PM

    drew05: when we put a section in here for children, you’ll fit right in. Why are you even commenting?
    RG III only won the Heisman


    Yeah, I know. What’s your point?

    I said I had never heard of him prior to the season in wich he won said trophy.

    Winning the Heisman trophy as a QB means he’s gonna be awesome in the NFL…it always does!

    Oh wait…nevermind.


  48. granadafan says: Mar 2, 2012 1:04 AM

    “neko02011980 says:Mar 1, 2012 11:30 PM
    Why does a 40 time matter, the guy plays qb He won’t make it in the nfl. Too aerogant, to much of a punk.”

    Clearly you’ve never watched RG3 play or ever heard him talk in an interview. The guy is incredibly humble and well spoken. He has a future career in broadcasting. Try researching something before shooting your mouth off and looking like a fool next time, Neko.

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