After watching the Insight Bowl tonight, one prospect really jumped out at me. Joel Filani. A lot of "experts" are writing him off as a second day prospect because of his reportedly poor timed speed. (Anywhere from 4.6 to 4.7) Even if Filani runs high 4.6's as expected, that doesn't mean he isn't a great player. Here's an excellent example of a bad time hurting an excellent receiver: Anquan Boldin, he ran OVER a 4.7, and that caused him to fall to the second round. Now, he's a Pro-Bowler and star WR for the Cardinals. How you could argue that teammate Jarrett Hicks* is a better prospect (which is what a lot of experts think) is unbelievable. Anyone who watched the Insight Bowl will know what I'm talking about.
Here's my scouting report for Filani:
Positives: Big, strong receiver, excellent run-after-catch. His hands have improved greatly over his college career. One of the best over the middle receivers in the game. May not time fast, but he sure outran a lot of CB's this year, and was extremely productive. Plays well in big games.
Negatives: Though his hands have improved, he will still occasionally drop catchable passes. His timed speed is his main weakness, as various websites have him anywhere from 4.60 to 4.75. Was sort of a headcase earlier in his career, but he has definitely appeared to mature.
This year's stats: 91rec 1,299yds 13TDs
I'm not necessarily saying that Filani will be a Pro-Bowler (although he is capable of it), but my point is that talented receivers can make it in the NFL despite below-average 40 times.
*Hicks was either academically ineligible or injured for 8 of Tech's 12 games this year, he ended up with 334yds and 2TD's in 4 games, and isn't expected to run below a 4.60, either.