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A.C. Leonard makes a case for himself with strong 40 time

acleonard Getty Images

One of the more intriguing tight end prospects in this year’s draft is A.C. Leonard, who started his college career at Florida, ended it at Tennessee State, and turned in a 40 time that will raise NFL eyebrows today at the Scouting Combine.

Leonard ran his 40-yard dash in 4.43 seconds, the fastest among all the tight ends at this year’s Combine and the third-fastest for a tight end since 2006, behind only Vernon Davis’s 4.38 and Dorin Dickerson’s 4.40. Leonard has phenomenal speed for a guy who’s 6-foot-2 and 252 pounds.

But NFL teams may not view Leonard as the kind of person they want on their franchise. Leonard was one of the many Urban Meyer recruits who got into off-field trouble at Florida, pleading no contest to a misdemeanor battery count after his girlfriend told police Leonard shoved her to the ground and dragged her through an apartment by her hair. Florida coach Will Muschamp said he and Leonard made “a mutual decision” that Leonard would leave school.

Leonard transferred to Tennessee State, and last year he was named a second-team FCS All-American. His performance on the field at Tennessee State showed that he has NFL talent, and his 40 time today reinforced that. The question is whether his on-field talent outweighs his off-field problems.

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21 Responses to “A.C. Leonard makes a case for himself with strong 40 time”
  1. thepftpoet says: Feb 22, 2014 2:22 PM

    Teams that only care about players 40 times end up being Terrible franchises like the Oakland Raiders.

    Name one relevant player on that team.

    Yet their water boy probably runs a 4.3 40 time.

  2. talkingproud says: Feb 22, 2014 2:26 PM

    What could possibly go wrong with drafting a Florida Gator TE?

  3. mianfr says: Feb 22, 2014 2:29 PM

    *Contendere

  4. chawk12thman says: Feb 22, 2014 2:30 PM

    Leonard’s interview with the clubs will be the most important part of his combine.

  5. ✦ Pittsburgh is the City of Champions ✦ says: Feb 22, 2014 2:41 PM

    Can he catch?

  6. thegreatgabbert says: Feb 22, 2014 2:46 PM

    A.C. brought some electricity to the Combine.

  7. thevikesarebest says: Feb 22, 2014 2:55 PM

    Hint: don’t talk to packer fans about running or anything involving exercise.

  8. mattwalshvideo says: Feb 22, 2014 2:57 PM

    Criminal from Florida, the patriots are already frothing at the mouth for him. Look away Bob Kraft, you don’t want to be “duped”.

  9. rajbais says: Feb 22, 2014 3:40 PM

    Is Tennessee State the new home for troublesome I-A castoffs???

    Last year it was Da’Rick Rogers.

    Now it’s AC Leonard.

  10. alshonbrandontandem says: Feb 22, 2014 3:50 PM

    6″2″ 252 is kind of small for TE’s now a days. Undraftable.

  11. alshonbrandontandem says: Feb 22, 2014 3:51 PM

    “Sounds like my kind of player”

    Ray Rice

  12. vicnocal says: Feb 22, 2014 4:03 PM

    He’s no A.C. Slater

  13. granadafan says: Feb 22, 2014 4:12 PM

    Urbane Meyer recruit from Florida? Don’t do it. The “University” of Florida should be ashamed of themselves for selling out the integrity of the ACADEMICS of the university to a charlatan who hired criminals, rapists, serial killers, thieves to play football at the school.

  14. navigator24 says: Feb 22, 2014 4:21 PM

    Chris Gragg was super fast last year…so what?

  15. djshnooks says: Feb 22, 2014 5:01 PM

    Make this dude an h-back and let him run the ball…he’d be a freaking beast.

    As for Chris Gragg, if he can get on the field…he will be a playmaker. I just don’t think he makes it, especially if Buffalo goes for Ebron or Niklas, etc.

  16. securb2013 says: Feb 22, 2014 6:42 PM

    Hernandez 2.0

  17. souldogdave says: Feb 22, 2014 6:47 PM

    It’s all HER fault.

  18. 4thqtrsaint says: Feb 22, 2014 7:33 PM

    You’re saying he’s making a case with a 40 time, but by the draft you’ll claim at least once the 40 don’t matter.

  19. bcajun says: Feb 22, 2014 8:46 PM

    Patriots??

  20. bennyb82 says: Feb 22, 2014 9:28 PM

    For every Aaron Hernandez, there are 10,000+ players that do not commit murder so the odds are in his favor with that.

  21. realdealsteel says: Feb 22, 2014 11:34 PM

    I’d take a chance on him.

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