Houston Texans rookie linebacker Jadeveon Clowney is just the second player to ace defensive line coach Jim Washburn's drill for evaluating pass rushers.
"Jadeveon Clowney wowed NFL scouts when he broad jumped seven tackling bags at his South Carolina pro day in March in a drill that Detroit Lions defensive line coach Jim Washburn has been using for years to evaluate pass rushers.
"Asked about that workout Tuesday, Washburn, who ran the defensive line drills at the Gamecocks' pro day, said 'a lot should be made' of Clowney's jump, something he's seen just one other player do in his 16 NFL seasons.
"'We just lay down bags and see if they could explode, and after they could explode, land on two feet and see if they could run and bend over and gather themselves and pick up the balls,' Washburn said. 'I've been doing this for a long time and he was really impressive.'
"Clowney, who went first overall in May's draft to the Houston Texans, jumped seven bags laying side-by-side in the middle of the field, picked up one tennis ball with his left hand a step later and another with his right hand a few yards away.
"The bags, three big and four small, covered about 3 yards, and Washburn said Clowney cleared them with '6, 8 inches to spare.' The drill is designed to measure a player's explosion.
"'He's got it,' Washburn said. 'He's got explosion plus.'
"Former Tennessee Titans defensive end Jevon Kearse also could jump seven bags, and Washburn said he's used the drill to eliminate draft prospects in the past.
"'There was a guy that was drafted in the first round several years back that I went to the school and did that, he had trouble with four,' Washburn said without naming the player. 'He clipped the fourth bag and I came back and said he'll never be a pass rusher because he just doesn't have quite enough explosion.
"'I never saw vertical jump as important as that, and the guy never became a pass rusher. And not saying there's there's any absolutes, but Clowney did good.'"
The Houston Chronicle's Dale Robertson says Clowney's play in training camp has impressed veteran left tackle Duane Brown:
"Veteran left tackle Duane Brown frequently finds himself opposite rookie outside linebacker Jadeveon Clowney and what he has seen on the NFL's No. 1 overall draft pick so far impresses him.
"Asked about people questioning Clowney's dedication, Brown said, ''I don't see that at all. He's come to me on a number of occasions asking for pointers and just talking to him I can tell he wants to be great. Like I said, he comes in here every day and works, doesn't complain, and that's all you can ask for.
"'He's a heck of an athlete (and) very hungry to learn, to be a good player. I really like to see that. He comes in here, he works his tail off. He's new, he's fresh and it's still early, but I think he's going to be as good as he wants to be.'
"Brown said Clowney working with J.J. Watt on the same side 'is really going to cause problems for defenses once they get in sync. Just taking in one of them at a time is a battle.'"