With the 2016 NFL Scouting Combine getting underway, draft hopefuls will be put through a number of drills to test their speed, agility, explosiveness, and strength. Inside the Pylon is publishing a special set of glossary terms to define some of the drills these players face in Indianapolis.
One of the position-specific drills that wide receivers are be put through at the Scouting Combine is The Gauntlet. This catching drill is combined with a lengthy sprint that requires receivers to receive seven passes from coaches and quarterbacks. It begins with the player standing with his back to a quarterback along the sideline. The receiver is instructed to turn completely around and immediately catch a pass from a QB. After making the catch, he turns back around to his starting point to catch another throw. Then the receiver takes off on an ~50 yard sprint across the field, catching five more passes along the way, thrown from both sides of the field. After making the final catch, the player needs to tuck the football, turn upfield and sprint ~30 yards to the end zone.
Here is a video of Justin Blackmon running the gauntlet:
As stated by ITP contributor and former college wide receiver Jeff Lloyd, the drill tests how well each player locates and tracks the football from throw to catch, and how quickly the player tucks the football after each catch. In addition, coaches look for whether each receiver is able to remain at a full sprint throughout the drill, or if he loses distance speed near its completion.