There are no surprises among the Penn State players who have been invited to the NFL Scouting Combine, which takes place later this month in Indianapolis.
Linebackers Michael Mauti and Gerald Hodges, defensive tackle Jordan Hill and center Matt Stankiewitch are among the more than 300 prospects that will be poked and prodded by every NFL team at the most important pre-draft event.
Hill figures to be the first Penn State player drafted, and some team is going to take a chance on Mauti in the sixth or seventh round – and get a steal if he can return from a third major knee injury.
One analyst I talked to said Mauti is not quite as instinctive as former Penn State great Sean Lee. But, he added, Mauti is very comparable to Lee, who has developed into a Pro Bowl-caliber player with the Dallas Cowboys.
The analyst said Mauti would be an ideal inside linebacker in a 3-4 defense, and I’m thinking the Steelers give him strong consideration in the late rounds — if they are convinced he can make a full recovery from the injury he sustained in Penn State’s next-to-last game in 2012 and stay healthy.
– Scott Brown