CeeDee Lamb 40 time: How did he compare to other wide receivers?
By Jerry Trotta
Remember when the Dallas Cowboys were on the clock in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft? It’s unclear whether Will McClay and company were set on drafting a receiver, but the pick became obvious when CeeDee Lamb was still on the board at No. 17 overall, and Dallas wasted no time putting a star on his helmet.
Lamb wasn’t an instant superstar akin to fellow first-round wideout Justin Jefferson, who went No. 22 overall to the Vikings, but he has since cemented himself as a top-10 player at the position (if not higher) after a remarkable 2022.
In 17 games, Lamb caught 107 passes for 1,359 yards (12.7 YPR) and nine touchdowns. He finished in the top six among WRs in each category, and his 154 targets trailed only Jefferson, Davante Adams, and Tyreek Hill for the NFL lead.
Again, given the hype surrounding Lamb coming out of Oklahoma, his ascension up the receiver ladder is no surprise.
Having said that, Lamb didn’t do himself many favors at the 2020 combine when it came time to partake in the 40-yard dash.
Where did Cowboys star CeeDee Lamb’s 40-yard dash time rank among WRs at the 2020 combine?
Luckily for Lamb, his underwhelming 40 time was glossed over by scouts. He was a menace after the catch with the Sooners, and his route-running and lateral quickness was always going to translate to the NFL. It helped Lamb’s stock that he impressed in receiver drills, including the end zone fade drill.
In terms of the 40-yard dash, though, Lamb’s 4.51 didn’t sniff the top 10 amongst receivers. Alabama’s Henry Ruggs stole the show with a blazing 4.27 time, while Southern Miss’ Quez Watkins posted a 4.35, and Tulane’s Darnell Mooney and Baylor’s Denzel Mims both clocked in at 4.38 seconds.
Memphis’ Antonio Gibson and Texas’ Devin Duvernay were the other wideouts who posted sub 4.4 times.
The next group of WRs includes Notre Dame’s Chase Claypool (4.42), LSU’s Justin Jefferson and Boise State’s John Hightower (4.43), Alabama’s Jerry Jeudy (4.45), TCU’s Jalen Reagor (4.47), Michigan’s Donovan People-Jones (4.48), and Arizona State’s Brandon Aiyuk (4.50).
That’s where Lamb checks in; 15th overall amongst receivers. Even with posting a subpar 40, Lamb drew a comparison to Raiders superstar and three-time All-Pro Davante Adams with a 96 score from Next Gen Stats.
While some analysts downgraded Lamb in their WR rankings for his 40 time, it should never be a death knell for a prospect’s draft stock; the same way a blistering 40-yard sprint from a mid-tier prospect shouldn’t skyrocket their stock.
Something to keep an eye on with this year’s combine just days away.