2014 NFL Combine: Kelvin Benjamin reveals past, shows humility

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

He failed two grades as a kid, but the late-bloomer is one of the most physically impressive players in attendance at the NFL Combine.

Post Gazette writer Ray Fittipaldo is at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, and like many writers, he's collecting quotes.

He was able to transcribe a few beauties from Florida State wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin - a player many teams will want to speak with over the course of the events this weekend and early next week.

For starters, Benjamin apparently failed both first and third grade, which would serve to explain his age (23) despite only being a redshirt sophomore. Overall, he came off as humble and focused - if not well-coached on the art of the interview.

When asked which pro receivers he watches (the expected answer being similarly built Calvin Johnson of the Detroit Lions), he responded, "I watch a lot of receivers. I don’t just watch the big guys, I try to watch the little guys, too. You watch the smaller guys to imitate their quickness off the line. Some guys, that first step, you can learn a lot from watching them do that."

That's the right mindset for a player, for all his physical talent, has work to do still on the details of the game. Benjamin is not the most polished route runner available in this draft, but at 6-foot-5, 240 pounds with good speed, he very well could find himself in the top half of the first round. Teams want that size, and figure they can teach him the rest.

Not all teams will feel that way, but it just takes one. Might that one be the Steelers at 15?

Benjamin said he's "pushing for 4.3," meaning that's the 40-yard dash time he is going to try to run while at the Combine. He'll be gone before 15 if he's in that range speed-wise, regardless of his route-running ability.

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