The NFL released the full list of 337 invitees to the 2020 NFL Combine from February 23rd to March 2nd at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis and two former Boilermakers will be heading to the home of the Colts to showcase their skills in Brycen Hopkins and Markus Bailey.
Purdue’s 2020 Pro Day will be in April so Brycen and Markus will be able to workout for teams there along with their former teammates.
Markus Bailey is an interesting case as he has the talent, leadership and drive to be a great NFL linebacker, but injuries have caused some bumps in the roads during his time in West Lafayette. He tore his ACL during his freshmen campaign and again tore it this past season forcing him to sit the year out.
Bailey was a guy that could do a little bit of everything at the linebacker position for Jeff Brohm and the coaching staff, he finished his career with 324 total tackles, 29 TFL’s. 14.5 sacks and 6 interceptions. Those numbers are outstanding, not to mention the fact that he really only played 3 years as two of his 5 seasons with the Boilermakers he played in only two games due to the aforementioned knee injuries. His football IQ, toughness and work ethic will translate to the NFL level, given a team gives him the opportunity to play.
There is not a lot of information on teams that are interested at this point in time, but I have seen some indications that the Packers, Redskins, Giants and Saints have some sort interest in him. This week in a conversation with Chris Rosvoglou, Markus said that two teams he would enjoy playing for in the NFL were the Saints and Seahawks.
I talked a little bit about Hopkins in a previous post after he participated in the 2020 Senior Bowl in January, but Hopkins is viewed as an early Round 2 prospect on NFL Draft Big Boards right now. He has outstanding athleticism at the tight end position, can create separation, and get yards after the catch, all of which will be highly valued by NFL teams. Some teams that have shown interest in the former Purdue pass catcher are the Colts, Bears, Jets, Steelers, Rams and Redskins, but with a solid performance at the NFL Combine he has the chance to slide up draft boards to potentially become a first round pick.
It will be interesting to see who will take a chance of the former Boilers and how their careers will progress at the pro level. Good luck to Brycen and Markus, Boiler Up!