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Thread: Senior Bowl practice reports

  1. #1

    Senior Bowl practice reports

    Senior Bowl practice report: Monday

    SI.com draft expert Tony Pauline is live in Mobile, Ala., where some of the draft's brightest talent are taking part in Senior Bowl week, the annual prospect showcase. He'll be providing live analysis from practice each day throughout the week.
    4:21 p.m. CT -- Monday practice is complete for the North. Overall Marvin Jones (WR/Cal) made a great impression and delivered much more than scouts expected. Have to also be excited about Mike Adams (T/Ohio State), who justified his rising draft stock with a strong practice.
    - The first practice of Tuesday starts 9:30 a.m. CT and we'll be bringing you all the goings on from the Senior Bowl!
    4:17 p.m. CT -- Brad Nortman (P/Wisconsin) was kicking moon shots all afternoon. His punts were consistently flying 55-to-60 yards with great hang time.
    4:05 p.m. CT -- Mitchell Schwartz (T/Cal) was forced to play center after the North's second center, Garth Gerhart (ASU) left the field with an injury. Schwartz has held his own in the early going, blocking with good fundamentals and, more importantly, displaying the ability to handle the center/quarterback snap exchange.
    - Alameda Ta'amu (DT/Washington) has displayed a lot of power on the inside, consistently pushing offensive linemen off the ball and into the backfield.
    - Mike Adams (T/Ohio State) looks like he's got his game on track and has been dominant in the middle part of practice.
    - Brian Linthicum (TE/Michigan State) has really impressed all day. He looked very athletic during opening drills and has made several impressive catches in full scrimmage.
    4:01 p.m. CT -- Senio Kelemete (G/Washington) has been incredibly athletic on the field and has stopped several top-rated pass rushers -- including Jack Crawford of Penn State -- dead in their tracks. In the full scrimmage Kelemete annihilated Vinny Curry on one play.
    - Mike Martin (DT/Michigan) and Mike Brewster (C/Ohio State) have had a terrific battle all afternoon. Martin fired off several snaps and took the advantage with his first step, but Brewster adjusted and out-positioned Martin toward the end of the drill. It's been fun to watch.
    - Shea McClellin (DE-LB/Boise State) spent much of his college career at defensive end but after tipping the scales at 248-pounds this morning, the coaching staff switched him to linebacker and thus far he's made the adjustment well. McClellin moves well in space, showing the ability to quickly change direction. He has a ways to go but you can tell there's something there.
    3:49 p.m. CT -- Alfonzo Dennard (CB/Nebraska) has struggled. He does not show a quick backpedal and struggled transitioning to run downfield with receivers. The usually reliable Dennard has not gotten his feet underneath him yet.
    - Isaiah Pead (RB/Cincinnati) has been the most elusive and creative ball carrier of the day. On one play he made two defenders miss with his ability to cut back against the grain.
    - Mike Adams (T/Ohio State) is really starting to pull it together. He's used his wide frame to out-position defenders and moves his feet well for a big man.
    - Michael Egnew (TE/Missouri) has looked incredibly fluid and smooth all day. He's very natural catching the ball and shows nice tight end speed.
    3:46 p.m. CT -- Vinny Curry (DE/Marshall) has looked terrific in the early going. He's been matched up against Ohio State tackle Mike Adams, who has been rising up draft boards, yet he's bettered the Big Ten lineman. Curry has looked quick, athletic and fluid. Adams reverted to holding Curry in an attempt slow him down.
    - To his credit Adams did rebound and has looked very good run blocking.
    - Mike Quick (WR/Appalachian State) has struggled and looked outclassed. His routes are awfully slow and not sharp. He's also dropped several catchable throws.
    - Marvin Jones (WR/Cal) has stood out in one-on-one drills. He probably runs the best routes of anyone on the North team, consistently separates from defensive backs and has made several outstanding receptions.
    - Kirk Cousins (QB/Michigan State) has shown the best arm of any signal caller on the North and it's of legitimate NFL strength. He's powered the ball into the tight spots and has challenged the hands of his receivers.
    3:37 p.m. CT -- It's overcast and slightly raining as the first practice of the day has gotten underway at the Senior Bowl.
    - Devier Posey (WR/Ohio State) looks terrific in the early going. He's run great routes and caught everything thrown in his direction. Posey looks very fluid and natural and does not look like a player that missed most of the 2011 season.
    - TJ Graham (WR/North Carolina State) a late addition to the game, has also looked good. He's made several difficult receptions and has run crisp, quick routes.
    - Marvin McNutt (WR/Iowa) has struggled in the early going. He looks very stiff and has dropped a number of catchable throws.
    - Though its still early, Kellen Moore (QB/Boise State) does not look good. He shows no ability to put speed on his passes and his throws have consistently been behind receivers.
    10:30 a.m. CT -- The 63rd Senior Bowl kicked off this morning, as more than 100 NFL hopefuls were weighed and measured in front of the league's 32 franchises, all of which had an assortment of general managers, coaches and scouts on hand. On stage at the Mobile Convention Center ballroom were several impressive looking athletes who'll take to the field this afternoon for the initial practice of the week.
    Several notable prospects were no-shows this week, mostly due to injury. Fast-rising receiver Kendall Wright of Baylor has been recovering from an ankle injury which he played with late in the year, and Wisconsin receiver Nick Toon is struggling with a foot injury. Small-school offensive lineman Amini Silatolu of Midwestern State, graded by a number of scouts as a second-day draft pick, is not in Mobile due to a hamstring injury. Trumaine Johnson, a highly rated cornerback from Montana, turned down an invitation to the Senior Bowl as he told officials he "was not ready" to participate. That has sent up a number of red flags, as the small-school prospect was graded as a potential second-round pick.
    Two players from Alabama's national title winning team are mending injuries and won't be on hand, including safety Mark Barron and defensive tackle Josh Chapman.
    Chapman played the last part of the season with a knee ligament injury, which he further worsened during the title contest against LSU. He's now looking at a rehabilitation process that will take at least four months.
    Scouts were pleased to see the bulk of the Tide's senior prospects opting to participate in the Senior Bowl less than two weeks after the title game. Courtney Upshaw, Marquis Maze, William Vlachos and DeQuan Menzi are all on hand and ready to take the field for Monday's practice.

    Senior Bowl practice report: Tuesday

    SI.com draft expert Tony Pauline is live in Mobile, Ala., where some of the draft's brightest talent are taking part in Senior Bowl week, the annual prospect showcase. He'll be providing live analysis from practice each day throughout the week.

    10:57 a.m. CT -- Morning practice is over. Without a doubt the two most impressive players this morning came from the defensive line. Mike Martin of Michigan and Kendall Reyes of UConn were both impossible to stop and set up shop behind the line of scrimmage.
    The South practice begins at 1:45 p.m. CT. Thus far the early reports on Oklahoma State quarterback Brandon Weeden have been terrific. We'll be here to cover it live.
    10:42 a.m. CT -- S George Iloka of Boise State just made a beautiful interception of a pass thrown by Kirk Cousins. Iloka stepped in front of the receiver and grabbed the ball away.
    - RB Chris Polk of Washington display terrific straigh ahead speed and power yet shows little in the way of creativity or the ability to elude defenders.
    - DL Mike Martin of Michigan continues to impress. He's shown the ability to finish plays today and has been a disruptive force all day.
    - DT Derek Wolfe of Cincinnati has been mostly quiet but just made a terrific play beating a double team block to get behind the line of scrimmage.
    - WR Marvn McNutt of Iowa continues to struggle. He had a step on a defender 30 yards downfield, Leonard Johnsin of Iowa State, but dropped a pass perfectly placed in his hands byKirk Cousins.
    - OL Joe Looney of Wake Forest, who replaced the injured Garth Gerhart, is gingerly walking off the field with what looks like an ankle injury.
    - LB James-Michael Johnson of Nevada has shown a lot of athleticism on the field today. He easily moves about the field, showing the ability to quickly get outside the box or get depth on pass drops. He's not made many plays on the ball, but is omnipresent moving around the field.
    - WR Gerrell Robinson of Arizona State made several terrific catches in scrimmage. He continues to run good routes and really does a nice job using his 220-pound frame to box out cornerbacks and physically beat them down for the catch.
    - RB Doug Martin of Boise State continues to impress scouts with his versatility. Beside displaying a variety of skils carrying the ball he looked good returning kicks during special teams practice.
    - CB Asa Jackson of Cal-Poly has been quiet during the defensive drills but looked very good returning punts. He's been able to handle the 60-yard moonshots that have been coming off the foot of Wisconsin's Brad Nortman on a very breezy day.
    10:18 a.m. CT -- QB Russell Wilson of Wisconsin has been up and down all morning. At times he throws beautiful, catchable passes that quickly arrive to the receivers' hands. Other times his passes resemble a wounded duck as they flutter in the air.
    - RB Doug Martin of Boise State has looked terrific thus far. He runs with great quickness and shows a burst through the hole. Martin is also very patient and does a nice job side-stepping defenders to create yardage.
    - DT Mike Martin of Michigan has been a disruptive force all morning. He just threw Penn State lineman Johnnie Troutman to the ground and blew up a running play.
    - RB Isaiah Pead of Cincinnati is again the toughest running back to tackle. He shows terrific footwork and just gave Notre Dame safety Harrison Smith a nice stiff arm to keep his play alive.
    - WR Brian Quick of Appalachian State continues to struggle. He shows very limited quickness in his game and cannot separate from defenders.
    - TE Emil Igwenagu of UMass has looked terrific as a blocker this morning. He's lined up at both fullback and on the line as a tight end, and no one has been able to get by him. He's small, but tough and strong. Igwenagu just made a terrific catch in double coverage.
    - OL Kevin Zeitler of Wisconsin has been shifting with Mike Brewster at the center position today.
    - DT Kendall Reyes of UConn has been a force this morning. He shows great explosion off the snap, as well as a variety of moves with his hands. Reyes has gotten a lot of penetration and just destoryed Zeitler of Wisconsin in one-on-one drills.
    - C Mike Brewster of Ohio State and DT Mike Martine of Michigan are again battling hard in practice. Brewster laughed about it yesterday and noted it's just a continuation of what's taken place the past four years.
    - G Kelechi Osemele of Iowa State has had a solid morning. He uses his wide body to seal defenders from the action and was able to overwhelm the smaller Vinny Curry.
    - OL Tony Bergstrom of Utah has had a solid day. One one play he steered the athletic Jack Craford of Penn State from his pass-rush angle, then in another instance buried Billy Winn of Boise State. Winn has not looked good at all. He looked sloppy in weigh-ins and has not been a factor at all in practice.
    10 a.m. CT -- Safety George Iloka of Boise State has had a quick start to the morning. He looks terrific in drills, displaying sound footwork in reverse and the ability to burst to the ball out of his plant.
    - QB Kellen Moore of Boise State continues to struggle. The speed on his throws is notably slower than any of the other signal callers at practice this morning.
    - WR Gerell Robinson of Arizona State looks solid. He runs exceptionally quick and crisp routes for a receiver that tips the scales in excess of 220 pounds.
    - QB Kirk Cousins of Michigan State continues to throw the ball with terrific speed and velocity. Receivers are never waiting on the pass as they leave their breaks.
    - OLB Shea McCLellin of Boise State continues to impress since making the move to linebacker. He destroyed several running backs and fullbacks this morning in pass-rushing drills in which he simulated standing up over a tackle.
    - What's so impressive about TMike AdamsofOhio State is the way he easily moves his 330-pound frame around the field. Even this morning, when asked to block in motion, Adams quickly gets out to the second level and is able to adjust and block linebackers thanks to his agililty.
    9:42 a.m. CT -- The weather this morning in Mobile has taken a turn for the better, as it's sunny and 60 degrees. The players now have prime conditions to practice in front of the hundreds of scouts on hand.
    Early news has DE Andre Branch of Clemson as a last-second scratch from the Senior Bowl. He's reportedly suffering from a groin injury. Garth Gerhart, who left the field with an injury Monday afternoon, is not on the field this morning. Guard Joe Looney of Wake Forest is, however, I assume as a replacement for Gerhart.
    Last edited by C Mart; 01-24-2012 at 01:12 PM.

  2. #2
    Very cool that Mike Martin is kicking ass this week...Anyone who's seen him in college knows he's as tough as it gets...Any thoughts on him as an undersized NT?

  3. #3
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    If Curry continues to impress over the next 2 months, then I think he should be strongly considered at #16. Talk about value all you want, but I'd feel a lot more comfortable with a guy like Curry at that spot than I would with Mercilus or Perry.

    Curry could turn out to be the best passrushing OLB in this draft class IMO.


    I also like what I'm hearing about Doug Martin, who the Jets have reportedly already met with. Could be a solid option in the 2nd/3rd round to compliment Greene.

  4. #4
    Excellent thanks for the reports.

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by Untouchable View Post
    If Curry continues to impress over the next 2 months, then I think he should be strongly considered at #16. Talk about value all you want, but I'd feel a lot more comfortable with a guy like Curry at that spot than I would with Mercilus or Perry.

    Curry could turn out to be the best passrushing OLB in this draft class IMO.


    I also like what I'm hearing about Doug Martin, who the Jets have reportedly already met with. Could be a solid option in the 2nd/3rd round to compliment Greene.
    I'll say it until I'm wrong...Curry is a stud. I like him more than both those guys you named too...Dude's got the complete package, he just needs some draft momentum (good Senior Bowl and combine will help).

    I don't care for RB until extremely late...I'm fine with gambles on guys like Bryce Brown, Brandon Bolden,or Tauren Poole in the 6-7-UDFA range.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Much ado about Nothing View Post
    I'll say it until I'm wrong...Curry is a stud. I like him more than both those guys you named too...Dude's got the complete package, he just needs some draft momentum (good Senior Bowl and combine will help).

    I don't care for RB until extremely late...I'm fine with gambles on guys like Bryce Brown, Brandon Bolden,or Tauren Poole in the 6-7-UDFA range.
    I like what I've seen of Curry, which admittedly isn't much. That said, I already like him better than Perry, who I've seen a lot of.


    Is Bryce Brown in the draft this year? Wow. He had a good freshman year at Tennessee. Then that whole Lane Kiffin thing happened and he left the school (Only went there because of Kiffin). I don't know what happened to him after that. I'd definitely want to take a look at him as an UDFA. He was pegged to be great (He and Trent Richardson were the top 2 backs in their class) and showed the potential his first year, but it's been 2 years since he played in an actual game, so I don't think I'd use anything more than our conditional 7 to get him.

  7. #7
    I would not mind getting Doug Martin in round 2 or 3, and I have not seen enough of Curry to know if hes worth a 16th overall pick but he seems to have had a productive college career and is getting good reports at the senior bowl. We could use a young DE/OLB that is athletic and fluid.

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    It's early,but i'm happy with the reports on Pead and Iloka.These guys will probably be around in the 3rd .

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Tinstar View Post
    It's early,but i'm happy with the reports on Pead and Iloka.These guys will probably be around in the 3rd .
    Iloka is the 2nd ranked Safety, every team at the bottom of the 2nd needs a safety. (if Goldson walks)

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    Quote Originally Posted by patman View Post
    Iloka is the 2nd ranked Safety, every team at the bottom of the 2nd needs a safety. (if Goldson walks)
    I don't care what he's ranked,he's a 3rd round pick. And Mark Barron is not a top 20 pick either.As a matter of fact,if it were up to me he's not coming off the board until the mid 2nd.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tinstar View Post
    I don't care what he's ranked,he's a 3rd round pick. And Mark Barron is not a top 20 pick either.As a matter of fact,if it were up to me he's not coming off the board until the mid 2nd.
    Sounds like Mike Adams is turning serious heads. Wouldn't surprise me to see him start getting picked to go to the Jets at 16 in future mock drafts.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bronxville Jets Fan View Post
    Sounds like Mike Adams is turning serious heads. Wouldn't surprise me to see him start getting picked to go to the Jets at 16 in future mock drafts.
    RT only players do not deserve 1st round grades.Adams doesn't have the athletic ability to play LT in the NFL.NFL speed rushers are gonna eat him alive .

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tinstar View Post
    RT only players do not deserve 1st round grades.Adams doesn't have the athletic ability to play LT in the NFL.NFL speed rushers are gonna eat him alive .
    Doesn't sound like he's being viewed as strictly a RT prospect anymore.

  14. #14

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Much ado about Nothing View Post
    I'll say it until I'm wrong...Curry is a stud. I like him more than both those guys you named too...Dude's got the complete package, he just needs some draft momentum (good Senior Bowl and combine will help).

    I don't care for RB until extremely late...I'm fine with gambles on guys like Bryce Brown, Brandon Bolden,or Tauren Poole in the 6-7-UDFA range.
    Curry in Green would be nice, like us to pickup Burfict or Mercilus afterwards

  16. #16
    Let’s take a look at my notes and observations from both practice sessions on Tuesday at the Senior Bowl. Here is what I am seeing on the field along with some talk from NFL scouts.

    - There was a buzz after the South squad wrapped up practice yesterday afternoon because of the speed, tempo and hitting on the field. The LBs looked more athletic, DBs were competing in one-on-ones and inside run drill was a physical session. There was a noticeable difference between the two practice sessions on Tuesday.
    - During one-on-one pass rush, both Alabama DE/ OLB Courtney Upshaw and UNC DE Quinton Coples stood out. With Upshaw, there is enormous power to his game but he also demonstrated the ability to use his hands (and multiple moves) to win. With Coples, we are looking at a legit edge rusher. Speed to turn the corner and athletic ability that isn’t matched by anyone on the field for his size (6-6, 281).
    - Michigan State QB Kirk Cousins stands out on the North roster because of this arm strength compared to Boise State’s Kellen Moore and Wisconsin’s Russell Wilson. And talking with scouts, his stock may start to rise.
    - This isn’t a strong WR class down here in Mobile, but what about Texas A&M’s Jeff Fuller? The 6-4 WR did show some ability to separate from DBs, plus he can run the 3-step game and intermediate route tree. The question I have: will he be able to win vs. NFL DB aligned in a press-position?
    - Loved seeing the DBs on the South squad get up to the line of scrimmage and play press-coverage. And the one CB that consistently competed was Dwight Bentley from Louisiana-Lafayette. Doesn’t have ideal size (5-10, 176), but was physical with his initial punch and also drove downhill on the ball when playing from an off-man position. Keep an eye on him throughout the draft process.
    - I asked an NFL scout yesterday to give me one name that continued to show up on the North roster and he told me Appalachian State WR Brian Quick. He has size (6-3, 222), length and body control.
    - I talked about Notre Dame SS Harrison Smith on Monday, but another safety to watch on the North roster is George Iloka from Bosie St. He is talll (6-3) for a middle of the field safety, displayed some range and took good angles to the ball on the skinny post/seam route. But with any free safety, we have to talk about coverage skills at the NFL level. Can he walk down over a slot, handle the TE on the 7 (corner) route, etc.?
    - Oklahoma State QB Brandon Weeden throws a good ball. This was one of the questions I had leading up to this week because of the offensive system Okie State, however Weeden looked comfortable in the pocket and displayed nice touch on the deep ball.
    - A better session for Oklahoma CB Jamell Fleming. He played with more confidence, challenged routes and brought a physical approach to his game in one-on-ones. From my perspective, he is the top CB on the North roster.
    - Iowa WR Marvin McNutt was solid in one-on-ones and you could tell he was there to compete. To read more about it, check out the breakdown from the NFP’s Wes Bunting.
    - LSU FS Brandon Taylor had the play of the day filling the alley and laying a clinic tape hit on RB Vick Ballard in the open field. Not surprising after watching the tackling technique from that LSU secondary all season.


    http://www.nationalfootballpost.com/...om-Mobile.html

  17. #17
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    From ESPN Insider
    Plenty of fast starts on Day 1
    Todd McShay
    Scouts Inc.
    Monday of Senior Bowl week features a lot of players getting used to new schemes and teammates, and a lot of coaching and teaching while players are in shorts and helmets.

    It's not an ideal setting for evaluating NFL prospects, but a handful of players clearly got off to fast starts on Day 1, setting the tone for the week as they try to separate from the pack and cement their draft status.

    D-linemen stand out
    The South team defensive line was clearly the most active, dominant unit on Day 1. North Carolina DE Quinton Coples enters the week as the highest-rated prospect in Mobile, and he lived up to the hype in his first practice. Coples owned the day from start to finish, and you can get a complete breakdown of his performance in our Stock Report to the right.

    Alabama DE/OLB Courtney Upshaw showed power as both a run defender and pass-rusher. Upshaw is not an elite speedster, but he used leverage well and consistently won with quickness and power during one-on-one pass-rush drills.

    The only mild concern with Upshaw is his instincts and how quickly he diagnoses plays in space. He was recognizing plays on a couple of occasions, and at one point it took him a few seconds to see a misdirection play. That's something we'll keep an eye on as the practice week progresses.

    South Carolina DE Melvin Ingram did diagnose plays quickly, and he also used power and quickness to win the majority of his matchups during one-on-one drills and the team period.

    Trio of wideouts shine
    Arkansas WR Joe Adams showcased his speed and showed good quickness off the line and in and out of breaks. Adams also displayed impressive hands, catching everything that was thrown his way.

    North Carolina WR Dwight Jones turned heads during the weigh-in -- checking in at a solid 6-foot-3 and 226 pounds -- and he followed that up by using his size effectively as a route-runner.

    Jones does not have great suddenness, but his size gives him a built-in ability to separate, and he used his frame well within his routes. He also caught the ball well.

    Finally, Appalachian State WR Brian Quick (6-3½, 222) needs some polish as a route-runner, but he has quick feet and fluid hips for a big receiver. Quick will round off cuts or take an extra step at times, but he was solid catching the ball, especially over his head on vertical routes.

    He was caught off-guard by how quickly Boise State QB Kellen Moore got the ball out on a quick out route, but later in practice Quick made a nice play on a sideline 9-route in the end zone, turning to find the ball and bringing it down inbounds.

    And while Quick isn't a blazer, he did show in a one-on-one matchup with Cal-Poly CB Asa Jackson the ability to use his long strides to eat up a cushion in a hurry. Quick is looking to show he can handle a higher level of competition, and he got off to a good start in Day 1.

    Late scratches
    We found out on Day 1 that Baylor WR Kendall Wright
    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    South team notebook
    Steve Muench and Kevin Weidl
    Scouts Inc.
    As noted above, Weeden had the best day among the South quarterbacks. He was not as effective when rolling to his left as to his right, but when rolling right he was crisp and accurate.

    He also made an impressive throw down the seam to Arkansas WR Joe Adams, one that required the kind of timing that is hard to get down in an all-star setting. Weeden made a quick decision and was accurate with the ball, turning it into one of the better throws we saw today.

    Foles continues to flash his talent, but his timing was off on Day 2. His passes were late and behind receivers at times, and he also seemed to be guiding the ball rather than letting it fly. That showed up on a throw from the left hash to the right sideline that died on him.

    It wasn't a bad day for Foles -- at one point he made an accurate touch pass to a running back on a crossing route during the team period, allowing the back to pick up some yards after the catch -- but he just wasn't as clean or crisp as Weeden.

    Finally, Lindley showed the ability to get through his progressions, but he needs to get off his first receiver more quickly. Lindley is also heavy-footed and not as mobile inside or outside the pocket as Weeden and Foles. And while he has as strong arm, Lindley continues to be erratic within the strike zone and misses it altogether at times.

    Linemen look good
    • Florida State OT Zebrie Sanders recovered from a tough start on Day 1, playing with better pad level and showing the ability to reset after initial contact. Sanders needs to add more overall strength and will never be a road grader in the running game, but he can protect the edge with his long arms and light feet, and he looked much better on Day 2.

    • Illinois OT Jeff Allen was knocked back a couple of times by North Carolina DE Quinton Coples -- to be fair, though, Coples has owned everyone he's faced -- but Allen displayed good feet and ability to anchor in pass protection. He was good sliding his feet and using his hands to stay in front of pass-rushers.

    • South Carolina DE Melvin Ingram continues to show an explosive first step, and impressive power and leverage to get into the pads of blockers and shock them back. Ingram also flashed a very good spin move when lined up inside, and with back-to-back solid performances he could be locking down a spot in the middle of the first round.

    • Clemson DT Brandon Thompson is quietly having a good start to the week. Thompson has shown quickness and the ability to anchor against double-teams, and he has quick hands and more athleticism than you might think. He was disruptive during 9-on-7 running drills, collecting a couple of tackles for loss.

    • Texas A&M DT Tony Jerod-Eddie flashed the strength and power to get good initial surge off the line. H's a limited athlete, but with is strong play at the point of attack Jerod-Eddie looks like a great fit as a 5-technique (DE) in a 3-4 scheme.

    Defensive backs stand out
    • Vanderbilt CB Casey Hayward is showing in Mobile what we saw from him during film study, which is the instinct to read quarterbacks and routes and make plays on balls in front of him. He's a tough player, but Hayward lacks ideal fluidity and will never be a great man-to-man cover corner.

    • LSU SS Brandon Taylor is a bit slow transitioning out of his backpedal and will never be a great cover guy -- he could likely hold up well enough in zone coverage -- but even in this setting he's showing his toughness against the run. Taylor laid out Mississippi State RB Vick Ballard, putting his physical game on display and proving his worth in run support.

    WR Criner's impressive hands
    Arizona WR Juron Criner had a hard time creating separation and didn't show much explosiveness out of breaks, but he caught everything thrown his way. Criner was excellent on Day 2 with his ability to extend his arms and snatch balls out of the air.

  18. #18

    Senior Bowl: North Practice Notes Day 3

    I got a good look at the linebackers this morning and it might be the strongest position on the North squad…
    Arkansas State LB Demario Davis again stood out with his natural foot quickness and athleticism in coverage. He quickly can redirect, finds the football well and has a burst out of his breaks. Plus, he displayed good change of direction skills limiting tight ends in man coverage.
    Utah State LB Bobby Wagner was also surprisingly solid in man coverage today considering he’s a guy who was used off the edge routinely on third down in college. He’s a physical kid who did a nice job anticipating routes, was able to sink his hips when trying to change directions and close. He’s isn’t the type of dynamic athlete who is able to get out of his breaks and make plays on the ball, but he understands angles and was able to close quickly in man.
    Nebraska LB Lavonte David is a bit undersized. However, he’s a “plus” athlete who can turn and run down the field. He’s loose in the hips, diagnoses plays quickly and always puts himself around the football. In the run game he’s routinely getting early jumps on the actions and knows how to scrape the edge and break down into contact.

    Other day three notes…
    In the secondary today, Michigan State safety Trenton Robinson showcased the ability to sit into his drop, stay compact with his footwork and quickly get out of his breaks in the deep half when driving on throws. He displayed an initial burst and had some closing range. However, he looks tighter in the hips when asked to turn and run, and doesn’t have a great feel when asked to match-up on the wheel routes out of the backfield. Twice he looked slow to decipher the action and gave up a step when trying to turn and run.
    Utah OL Tony Bergstrom is another guy who I have been warming up to this week. He’s limited off the edge as a tackle. However, when kicked inside to guard he showcases a good first step, sits his base down and “fits” well into contact. He isn’t a guy I see as a potential NFL tackle, but as a guard prospect could see him starting at the next level.
    On the other hand, Wisconsin OG Kevin Zeitler had a much tougher day. He’s a strong kid who can stick through contact once he gets his hands on you. However, he’s not real comfortable when trying to mirror in space laterally and would routinely get overextended trying to get his hands on defenders. The more space he’s asked to play in the less effective he is in pass protection.
    I have to tip my hat to Boise State LB Shea McClellin. The guy has done a nice job this week competing in linebacker drills. Plus, he showcases sneaky fluidity when asked to turn and run down the field with running backs and has a good feel finding the football when lined-up inside. Overall, he’s a versatile kid who will get looks in both a 34 and 43 scheme and should be able to create pressure from a number of spots at the next level.
    Wednesday was the best day of practice in my view for Nebraska CB Alfonzo Dennard. He was physical in press coverage, did a nice job staying in receivers back pockets down the field and competes when asked to go make a play on the football. He still lets opposing wide outs get behind him. However, as a potential cover two guy he should be able to find a home.
    It’s been a pretty “blah” week of practice for Missouri TE Michael Egnew. He hasn’t shown much burst off the line from a three-point stance and is tighter when trying to get out of his breaks and separate. Now, he is a big kid, but looks limited in the type of routes he can run at the next level.
    Finally, Appalachian State WR Brian Quick finally started to flash a little for me today. He’s a good-looking kid with a big frame and can track the football down the field. Plus, he did a better job dropping his pad level working the comeback and looked more natural catching the football. I still don’t see the guy as a big time NFL receiver who consistently is going to be able to win off the line and separate out of his breaks. But he’s got enough natural talent to create some mismatches at the next level.


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  19. #19

    Senior Bowl practice report: Wednesday

    SI.com draft expert Tony Pauline is live in Mobile, Ala., where some of the draft's brightest talent are taking part in Senior Bowl week, the annual prospect showcase. He'll be providing live analysis from practice each day throughout the week.

    1:56 p.m. CT -- The final full pads practice at the Senior Bowl is underway, as the South has taken the field. How intense is Wednesday practice at the Senior Bowl? A veteran insider who's been covering the league for more than four decades told me he saw more hitting during the first 45 minutes of practice this morning than he's seen in any two days of practice on the NFL level.
    A few final notes from the North.
    T Mike Adams of Ohio State was not able to capitalize on his dominant performance from Monday and looked human at times this morning. How will this effect his draft stock? Let's say at this point he's not a lock to be a top-15 choice.
    CB Alfonzo Dennard of Nebraska leaves Mobile with a draft grade much lower than when he arrived. Dennard was stiff and struggled all week. The projected first-rounder was beaten by receivers who are likely last-day picks. While it's a bit premature, some scouts on hand say Dennard may have to move inside to safety, a thought that could further depress his draft stock.
    11:00 a.m. CT -- The North practice is complete. Vinny Curry of Marshall really stood out today and was impossible to stop at times. He's at a disadvantage, as he's been used solely at defensive end and never allowed to stand up over tackle, but scouts leave the morning and the week highly impressed with his athleticism, quickness and general feel as a pass rusher.
    - RB Dan Herron of Ohio State showed surprising foot quickness today. After being stuffed on the inside for a few hand-offs, Herron suddenly displayed the ability to bounce around the outisde and avoid defenders and piles.
    - S Harrison Smith of Notre Dame has struggled. He looks good in pads but in scrimmage and during drills looks solely like a straight-line, downhill safety with limited skills in coverage.
    - TJ Graham is another player to watch during special teams situations on Saturday. He's been fielding kicks and has shown impressive speed and the ability to get cleanly through the lanes on returns.
    - OL Senio Kelemete of Washington was pushed inside to guard today and was effective. He's a solid athlete and his ability to block with sound fundamentals (knee bend, hand placement) is impressive.
    - G Tony Bergstrom of Utah continues to improve. He's more than held his own during one-on-one blocking drills and in scrimmage. After a slow start Bergstrom has really elevated his play as the week progressed.
    10:47 a.m. CT -- WR Marvin Jones of Cal continues to impress. We spoke of his route-running skills and burst earlier, but he's also a heady ball player. He just did a terrific job staying with the action and following his quarterback across the field, finding the open space to help out the signal caller, who was about to be sacked.
    - Shea McClellin of Boise State looks better every day at the linebacker position. He's been planted in the middle today and has done a great job remaining patient with assignments, smoothly moving across the field and showing a good degree of awareness.
    - Kirk Cousins just threw a beautiful pass to Marvin McNutt for a long gainer. Cousins was pressured heavily by Cam Johnson of Virginia, but patiently sat in the pocket and delivered an accurate strike.
    10:35 a.m. CT -- DT Alameda Ta'amu of Washington is still showing tremendous power and has been tough to stop. On the last play he drove Ohio State center Mike Brewster into the backfield, three yards behind the line of scrimmage.
    - T Mike Adams of Ohio State is really having a tough time this morning handling Vinny Curry. Curry has convincingly beat the big tackle off the snap every time. Curry was just moved inside to defensive tackle and annihilated Kevin Zeitler with a swim move. We got ahead of ourselves in our praise for Kevin Zeitler. He's been beaten bad the past three downs by three different defensive linemen.
    - DE Cam Johnson of Virginia has displayed a lot of quickness and speed off the edge in one-on-one drills.
    - C Mike Brewster of Ohio State is having a tough go of it this morning. He was just beaten badly by Mike Martin of Michigan, who had been quiet most of the day. Brewster has been struggling to hold the point and continues to get pushed back off the line.
    - T Kelechi Osemele of Iowa State looks good at right tackle. He completely shut down Jack Crawford of Penn State, who's supposedly quicker and more athletic than Osemele.
    - LB James Michael Johnson of Nevada continues to look very athletic on the field, but today he's starting to make plays on the ball.
    - LB Lavonte David of Nebraska continues to impress. He just made a great play in full scrimmage against the run, exploding up the field to stop Pead behind the line of scrimmage.
    - QB Russell Wilson of Wisconsin has shown he's able to make plays based on his athleticism. Wilson looked like he was going to be sacked in scrimmage for a big loss, but was able to escape the rush and defenders to make a nice completion to Chris Polk.
    - QB Kellen Moore shows terrific timing on his passes. The consensus is he'll be a No. 3 quarterback for a West Coast offense in the NFL.
    10:22 a.m. CT -- Late addition Rishaw Johnson of Cal-Pa, who played guard during his college career, has been used at center in the early going and has struggled. Too many center/quarterback fumbled snaps thus far.
    - Many on hand believe the problem with Kellen Moore's poor arm strength starts with his delivery. Moore has a short throwing motion and looks like he's pushing the football. The comparison to Tyler Palko of the Kansas City Chiefs is being made.
    - Vinny Curry of Marshall is once again displaying a lot of quickness and athleticism. He really struggles handling blocks, and looks more and more like he'll be a natural as a 3-4 outside linebacker rather than at defensive end.
    - Doug Martin just had a nice run in which he put a move on Trent Robinson and left the Michigan State safety grasping at air.
    - WR TJ Graham of North Carolina State has displayed a great burst of speed in drills and just ran by Leonard Johnson for a deep pass. Graham has elevated his stock the past three days.
    - G Kevin Zeitler of Wisconsin has upped his game this morning. He's been just about the only lineman who's been able to slow down Mike Martin of Michigan and stopped him cold on one snap.
    - DT Derek Wolfe of Cincinnati looks good this morning. He does not get a lot of penetration, but he's quick and impossible to move off the line of scrimmage.
    9:48 a.m. CT -- The North squad began the day with special teams drills, specifically kick return and coverage game plans for Saturday. Doug Martin of Boise State again looks good showing both a burst and long speed. This is something to keep an eye on during Saturday's game, which will be the first and only time both squads run special teams at full speed and full contact.
    - Isaiah Pead, the running back from Cincinnati, has been returning punts for the North this morning and doing a good job. Several scouts have commented that Pead's quickness and short burst of speed are the skills needed for a punt returner in the NFL. Something else to keep an eye on Saturday.
    - TE Brian Linthicum of Michigan State sat on the sidelines yesterday, but looks terrific this morning. He moves incredibly well for a big man and is smooth in and out of his routes.
    - WR Devier Posey of Ohio State continues to impress with his physcal skills. He shows exceptional quickness in and out of routes and a nice burst of speed. He hasn't shown the strong hands or ability to pluck the ball from the air, but to his credit Posey has not dropped many passes the past three days.
    - WR Marvin McNutt of Iowa looks improved this morning. Early-week jitters may have resulted in some stiffness and dropped passed but thus far he's looked very smooth and has caught the ball well.
    - Doug Martin is impressing outside of special teams drills, too. He's showing terrific quickness and just put a great move on former Boise State teammate Shea McClellin to come free in the flat for a nice reception. Martin has shown soft, strong hands all week.
    - LB Lavonte David of Nebraska has looked good in coverage drills all morning. He's athletic, easily runs downfield with backs or tight ends and nicely positions himself to defend the pass.
    - LB Audie Cole of North Carolina State is not known for his foot speed or athleticism, but he's just a good, tough football player. Every time Cole has stepped to the line this morning he seems determined to stop his opponents by any means necessary, and for the most part he has.
    9:35 a.m. CT -- The North has taken the field for the final day of full-pads practice at the Senior Bowl. Today is always the most important day of the week, as the intensity is turned up several notches. There are more general managers, coaches and scouts on hand for Wednesday practice than at any point in time during the week.
    Rishaw Johnson, the guard from Cal-Pa, flew to Mobile last night and is a late addition to replace the injured Joe Looney. Johnson really impressed during two days of Shrine Game practice last week.
    It's hotter and muggier this morning than any of the past two days, so it's going to be a real test for these NFL hopefuls.

    Last edited by C Mart; 01-25-2012 at 03:14 PM.

  20. #20
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    Looks like Vinny Curry is rising.

    I hope we get him just for Gcherd.

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