Running back prospects are scheduled to hit the field at Lucas Oil Stadium on Friday for timing and testing drills at the 2017 NFL Scouting Combine.
Thursday, however, their footsteps led them to the bench press station and podium sessions with members of the media.
Saquon Barkley and Nick Chubb each repped 225 pounds 29 times on Thursday, a fact not lost on NFL Research:
Much more focus will be placed on Friday's times in the 40-yard dash.
Barkley, who said he weighed-in at 232.6 pounds, was ranked as the top running back by NFL Media analysts Mike Mayock and Bucky Brooks heading into the combine. Mayock ranked Chubb fifth, but Brooks didn't have the former Georgia Bulldog in his top five.
Here are some highlights from media sessions with running back prospects:
Saquon Barkley, Penn State
Pre-combine draft rankings: Mayock 1, Brooks 1
On his running style: "I try to be a versatile player. I'm very confident in myself. Whether the ball's on the 1-yard line or the 99-yard line, I like to think I can find a way to get into the end zone. I can do it all. I can go over top of you. I can beat you with speed. I can beat you with some wiggle. I can run through you. I try to improve every day."
Derrius Guice, LSU
Pre-combine draft rankings: Mayock 2, Brooks 2
NFL.com's Nick Shook noted that Guice, who weighed-in at 224, changed his source of inspiration from Reggie Bush to Marshawn Lynch.
"I see somebody that refuses to go down," Guice said. "When I run, I really think about him every time and when I go back and watch him, I'm like, 'I really run like this dude, man.' It's crazy.
"Growing up, my favorite running back was Reggie Bush. And then as I got older and started really studying running backs I was like, man, 'Beast Mode' really reminds me of myself."
Ronald Jones II, Southern Cal
Pre-combine draft rankings: Mayock 3, Brooks 3
Interestingly, Jones explained that he likes No. 25 because of Jamaal Charles instead of citing the number that fellow Trojans alum Reggie Bush wore for the Saints.
Jones has been compared to Charles, which is fine by him.
"I love his game. He was one of my idols growing up," Jones said.
Sony Michel, Georgia
Pre-combine draft rankings: Mayock 4, Brooks 5
Lindsay H. Jones of USA TODAY *Sports featured the relationship* **of Michel and Chubb, who are on the doorstep of taking their games to the pro level after teaming at Georgia. Jones wrote:
They never considered themselves rivals, Michel said Thursday, but rather wildly competitive friends whose individual desires fed into bigger team goals. Now those competitive mentalities could propel both players into the first two rounds on the NFL draft.
"Having somebody there as good as he is just helped me want to better my game every day," Michel said of Chubb. "There were no days that I could step on the field and didn't want to give my best. He brought the best out of me."
Royce Freeman, Oregon
Pre-combine draft rankings: Brooks 4, not ranked by Mayock
On interviewing with teams:"You know, the first initial nerves, [I] feel like you go in there and you meet guys that are part of the team and you just want to make an impression. Once you get over the nerves, I feel like everything goes smooth."
Nick Chubb, Georgia
Pre-combine draft rankings: Mayock 5, not ranked by Brooks
On recent draft picks making a quick impact: "I think over the past few years, the running backs have done a great job of coming in on an NFL level to kind of put the position in a better situation. Using the running backs a lot more in the passing game, things like that, so those guys definitely helped out in that area."
Here are some of the example of external media coverage in response to the viral video: