Another case of weird happenings at the NFL Scouting Combine took place Sunday, March 3, according to NFL.com’s Chase Goodbread. At the beginning of each NFL Scouting Combine, verbal and mental tasks like interviews and IQ tests are given to prospects, so that scouts can see where their heads are. Formal interviews take place to assess and familiarize scouts from all 32 teams with the characteristics of players they wish to draft, but in some cases, the formal interviews… are rarely formal.
There are numerous stories each year at the combine in the tune of draft prospects being asked some peculiar questions and weird requests to see how players respond to unexpected situations. Questions have ranged from scouts asking about a player’s sexuality to murder methods of whether to use a gun or knife.
Yet, amidst all this weirdness, this plays a significant part in the NFL Draft process.
What the Seattle Seahawks did while interviewing Kentucky defensive back and draft prospect Lonnie Johnson Jr. probably added little, if any, value to this sentiment of a peculiar interview providing salient information on a prospect.
According to Johnson, the defensive back had to partake in a staring contest.
Yes, you read that correctly.
CB Lonnie Johnson of Kentucky said the #Seahawks put him in a staring contest lasting "15, 16 seconds" during his formal interview with them. Said he won. Couldn't recall the name of who he went against.#NFLCombine
— Chase Goodbread (@ChaseGoodbread) March 3, 2019
Johnson said it lasted around 15 to 16 seconds before his interviewer blinked. The Seahawks may have done this to provoke or gauge Johnson’s focus, but this is still a pretty strange request for the guy that they may draft in next month’s draft. It shouldn’t take a rocket scientist to see that blinking is pretty important.
Someone should inform the Seahawks that this is the NFL Combine, not second-grade recess.