UCF’s One-Handed LB Shaquem Griffin Stuns NFL World With Record-Setting 40-Yard Dash

Bryan Brandom
(Photo: Getty Images)

More than two months after his undefeated University of Central Florida Golden Knights weren’t invited to compete for the national championship, the team’s star linebacker Shaquem Griffin almost wasn’t invited to the NFL combine.

If his performance as a late invitee to the combine is any indication of how his team would have fared in the College Football Playoff, Alabama should feel glad the 13-0 Knights were denied entry.

The 22-year-old, who’s lived without his left hand since childhood due to a rare condition called amniotic band syndrome, put on an unprecedented performance.

Griffin ran the 40-yard dash in just 4.38 seconds, the fastest for a linebacker since the public documentation of combine times, as well as the fastest for any defensive player weighing at least 225 pounds.

No other linebacker at the 2018 combine came within even a tenth of a second of Griffin’s time.

The list of 40-yard dash times in combine history that he beat out includes those belonging to NFL studs like Julio Jones, Ezekiel Elliott, and Richard Sherman.

He also posted the same time as his brother a year ago. Shaquill Griffin is 30 pounds lighter and now plays cornerback for the Seattle Seahawks.

Seahawks coach Pete Carroll could hardly believe his eyes.

Same goes for current and former players watching at home.

Griffin also impressed by pumping out 20 reps of 225 pounds with a prosthetic hand in the bench press portion; his previous personal best was 11.

“So many people are going to have doubts about what I can do, and obviously, it started at the bench press,” Griffin told reporters on Saturday. “Some people think I can do three, some people think I can do five, some people didn’t think I could do the bench press. But I did it and competed with everybody else and did 20, and that’s just one step closer to everything I need to accomplish. There’s going to be a lot more doubters saying what I can’t do, and I’m ready to prove them wrong.”

Something tells me he’s gonna do the same to the 31 teams that end up passing on him in the draft.