OSU’s Stephen Paea sets all-time NFL mark

Posted Feb 27, 2011

THE ALL-TIME BENCH PRESS RECORD at the NFL Combine now belongs to Oregon State’s Stephen Paea.

DT Stephen Paea out of Oregon State bench pressed 225 pounds a record 49 times on Sunday, blasting away the old record.

The old NFL mark was 45 reps, previously accomplished by UTEP defensive tackle Leif Larsen (2000), Ohio State d-end Mike Kudla (2006) and Arkansas o-lineman Mitch Petrus (2010).

Paea set the record despite injuring his knee at the Senior Bowl. His 40 time at the combine was expected to be impressive but because Paea had surgery for a torn meniscus, he isn’t running at the combine.

But he sure did wow’ em with his lifting.

Paea told reporters he notched 48 reps Monday.

“I’ve been blessed the last couple months to prepare for this event…I think I could go back and do another one.”

Paea grew up playing rugby in Tonga and didn’t pick up football until moving stateside at 16. He played high school football in Provo, Utah, then attended Snow Junior College in nearby Ephraim for a year before landing at Oregon State. The Beavs were his only Pac-10 offer.

Paea has been projected as the fourth best d-tackle available coming into the combine.

The top bench-press results at the NFL Combine since 2000:
Stephen Paea: 49
Petrus: 45
Kudla: 45
Larsen: 45
Jeff Owens, DT, Georgia (2010): 44
Brodrick Bunkley, DT, Florida State (2006): 44
Scott Young, G, BYU (2005): 43
Tank Tyler, DT, North Carolina State (2007): 42
Isaac Sopoaga, DT, Hawaii (2004): 42

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