Fastest Linebacker 40 Times in NFL Combine History


Linebacker 40 Times NFL Combine

I’ve loved the NFL Combine for as long as I can remember. It’s essentially an Olympics decathlon for college football players each year. While it’s debatable whether this whole event is actually valuable (not quite sure why we’re still running 60-yard shuttles), my fascination with it has never waned.

When I’ve trained players for the combine, one of the things we would always do is look at previous years’ results to see how each guy’s numbers compared. It was a great tool for goal-setting and motivation.

I basically did the same thing for this guide. I went through all the previous NFL Combines to find the top Linebacker 40 times of all time.

Note: These are the official NFL Combine times from NFL.com. Some resources online will also include pro-day times, but because there are so many other variables (surface, weather, etc) I’ve stuck strictly to the official times from Indianapolis.

Best Linebacker NFL Combine 40 Times All-Time

Fastest Linebacker Times in NFL Combine History
Player School Time Year
Shaquem Griffin UCF 4.38 2018
Isaiah Simmons Clemson 4.39 2020
Jon Alston Stanford 4.40 2006
Devin White LSU 4.42 2019
Troy Andersen Montana State 4.42 2022
Devin Bush Michigan 4.43 2019
Gary Johnson Texas 4.43 2019
Thomas Howard Texas El-Paso 4.44 2006
Christian Harris Alabama 4.44 2022
Antwan Barnes Florida International 4.45 2007
Quincy Black New Mexico 4.45 2007
David Long West Virginia 4.45 2019

Year By Year Top Linebacker 40 Times

Here is a breakdown of the top 5 40 times from each year going back to 2012. In addition to the top 5 each year, I’ve also included any Linebacker that has run a 4.55 or faster.

Related –> NFL Combine Averages By Position at 2022 NFL Combine

2022

Fastest NFL Combine Linebacker Times 2022
Player School Time Year
Troy Andersen Montana State 4.42 2022
Christian Harris Alabama 4.44 2022
Channing Tindall Georgia 4.47 2022
Malcolm Rodriguez Oklahoma State 4.52 2022
Brandon Smith Penn State 4.52 2022
Quay Walker Georgia 4.52 2022
Leo Chenal Wisconsin 4.53 2022
D’Marco Jackson Appalachian State 4.55 2022

2020

Fastest NFL Combine Linebacker Times 2020
Player School Time Year
Isaiah Simmons Clemson 4.39 2020
Willie Gay Jr Mississippi State 4.46 2020
Davion Taylor Colorado 4.49 2020
Patrick Queen LSU 4.50 2020
Shaun Bradley Temple 4.51 2020
Kenneth Murray Oklahoma 4.52 2020
Jordyn Brooks Texas Tech 4.54 2020

2019

Fastest NFL Combine Linebacker Times 2019
Player School Time Year
Devin White LSU 4.42 2019
Devin Bush Michigan 4.43 2019
Gary Johnson Texas 4.43 2019
David Long West Virginia 4.45 2019
Blake Cashman Minnesota 4.50 2019
Ty Summers TCU 4.51 2019

2018

Fastest NFL Combine Linebacker Times 2018
Player School Time Year
Shaquem Griffin UCF 4.38 2018
Roquan Smith Georgia 4.51 2018
Malik Jefferson Texas 4.52 2018
Jerome Baker Ohio State 4.53 2018
Tremaine Edmunds Virginia Tech 4.54 2018

2017

Fastest NFL Combine Linebacker Times 2017
Player School Time Year
Jabrill Peppers Michigan 4.46 2017
Duke Riley LSU 4.58 2017
Raekwon McMillan Ohio State 4.61 2017
Alex Anzalone Florida 4.63 2017
Tyus Bowser Houston 4.65 2017
Blair Brown Ohio 4.65 2017
Anthony Walker Northwestern 4.65 2017

2016

Fastest NFL Combine Linebacker Times 2016
Player School Time Year
Darron Lee Ohio State 4.47 2016
Travis Feeney Washington 4.50 2016
De’Vondre Campbell Minnesota 4.58 2016
Deion Jones LSU 4.59 2016
Leonard Floyd Georgia 4.60 2016

2015

Fastest NFL Combine Linebacker Times 2015
Player School Time Year
Vic Beasley Clemson 4.53 2015
Kwon Alexander LSU 4.55 2015
Stephone Anthony Clemson 4.56 2015
Bud Dupree Kentucky 4.56 2015
Ben Heeney Kansas 4.59 2015

2014

Fastest NFL Combine Linebacker Times 2014
Player School Time Year
Kevin Pierre-Louis Boston College 4.51 2014
Telvin Smith Florida State 4.52 2014
Lamin Barrow LSU 4.64 2014
Khalil Mack Buffalo 4.65 2014
Ronald Powell Florida 4.65 2014

2013

Fastest NFL Combine Linebacker Times 2013
Player School Time Year
Zaviar Gooden Missouri 4.47 2013
Cornelius Washington Georgia 4.55 2013
Jon Bostic Florida 4.61 2013
Jamie Collins Southern Mississippi 4.64 2013
Sio Moore Connecticut 4.65 2013

2012

Fastest NFL Combine Linebacker Times 2012
Player School Time Year
Mychal Kendricks California 4.47 2012
Zach Brown North Carolina 4.50 2012
Luke Kuechly Boston College 4.58 2012
Demario Davis Arkansas State 4.61 2012
Nigel Bradham Florida State 4.64 2012
Najee Goode West Virginia 4.64 2012

FAQ

Does Running a Fast 40 at the Combine Guarantee Success for a Linebacker?

Running a fast 40 at the NFL Combine can lead to much hype and recognition, but does it directly translate to NFL success?

Just for fun, I analyzed the careers of the all-time fastest 12 40 times for linebackers and it turns out, not at all.

Now, don’t get me wrong, running a fast 40 at any position doesn’t guarantee success in the NFL. There are countless amount of factors that go into play for a successful career, some of which are even completely out of control for the player.

But, having said that, for linebackers, the correlation for success is low even when compared to other positions.

There is only one Pro Bowl season (White) out of the entire group. While there are 3 first-round selections (Simmons 8th, White 5th, Bush 10th), over half the group went in the 3rd round or later.

5 of the players in the group are still currently active so this may change, but the longest careers out of the group are only 8 years long (Howard, Barnes). Compare that to the best Offensive Line 40 times where 6 of the top 10 played 9 years or longer.

So, if you’re looking for a can’t miss indicator for the next hall-of-fame linebacker, you’ll need to look someplace else than at the 40-yard dash.

Other Position Groups

If you enjoyed this deep dive into NFL Combine linebacker 40 times, you may be fired up to know that I’ve also done the same thing with other position groups as well.

Final Thoughts

Keep in mind that not everyone that gets invited to NFL Combine actually runs a 40 at the Combine. So, some players that potentially could have run extremely fast times don’t have an official time on the record.

On top of that, there are many players each year that would have put up fast times and had success at the NFL level that doesn’t receive an NFL Combine invite.

References

NFL.com

Bleacher Report

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Ryan Horton

Horton Barbell was created by Ryan Horton who has served as a Sports Performance Coach for almost 20 years. My mission is to create a training resource to help as many coaches and athletes as possible maximize athletic potential.

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