ON FULL DISPLAY
The junior quarterback from Central Florida embraced every aspect of the NFL combine—including questions from teams about his model girlfriend. Bortles, a projected top 10 pick, ran a 4.93 40 (ninth among QBs) and had a vertical jump of 32½ inches (fourth).
DAN PATRICK:Strangest question at the combine?
March 10, 2014
BLAKE BORTLES: Nothing was really that bad. I got a couple of girlfriend questions. But besides that, it was all pretty normal.
DP:What did they ask about your girlfriend, Lindsey Duke?
BB: If we come to town, will she be there for dinner? Stuff like that.
DP:They obviously knew about her.
BB: They knew going into the meeting. That was their angle—to see how I reacted to it.
DP:Did anyone warn you that this would be a topic?
BB: No, I had no idea. [But] it was stuff I had heard before.
DP:Why did you do everything at the combine?
BB: It's an opportunity to make a first impression on 32 teams. Why wait until pro day? I grew up watching the combine and dreaming of competing in it.
DP:What do you do better than Johnny Manziel?
BB: I can't name things he can do. I can just tell you what I can do. As a quarterback, being 6'5", 235 pounds, being able to stand in the pocket, extend plays...
DP:How big was the Fiesta Bowl victory over Baylor in establishing Central Florida as legit?
BB: It was huge to be able to end the season with a win like that, in a game that nobody gave us a shot in.
DP:What was the biggest school that recruited you?
BB: Probably Purdue, but it was to play tight end.
DP:Did other schools ask you to move positions?
BB: Just Tulane.
DP:Do you think you could make it in the NFL as a tight end?
BB: I doubt it.
BB: I've never played the position in my life, for even one down.
DP:Favorite team growing up?
BB: The Packers.
DP:Would you have a problem playing for the Bears?
BB: I don't have a problem playing for any team in that division. [The Packers are] who my dad likes. That's who I grew up watching every Sunday. But I would love to play for any team in the NFL.
DP:Are you going to the draft?
BB: Not sure yet. Don't know if I'm going to be invited.
DP:Oh, come on. You're going to get invited.
BB: I'll figure that out when it becomes official.
DP:Will you bring your girlfriend?
BB: I will bring her. You want to get dinner?
DP:But you know the camera will find her in the green room. What will she do if you drop?
BB: Maybe we can put her in the stands and bring her in after I get drafted.
Packers linebacker Clay Matthews doesn't think the NFL can penalize players for using racial slurs on the field: "This is an emotional game played by tough men who obviously are a little crazy in doing so. [There] is going to be a fine line as far as where [it] stops when you start eliminating language from play. It'll be very difficult."... Jim Boeheim surprised even himself with his eruption and ejection at the end of Syracuse's 66--60 loss to Duke on Feb. 22. "I never wanted to take my jacket off," the Orange coach told me. "I have gotten it halfway off a couple of times before, but not since Purdue and Joe Barry Carroll [on Jan. 13, 1980] did I take the whole jacket off." ... I asked Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson what he did at halftime of Super Bowl XLVIII. "I took a shower," he said. "We came out of halftime and it felt like it was a brand new game."