Senior Bowl week is over after the South squad’s 21-16 victory over the North team at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile. With the dust settling, it is time to quickly react to what we saw in today’s game and examine which players have helped or hurt their draft stock.
Let’s take a look at some of the top players that are seeing their draft status on the rise following their performance at the Senior Bowl.
5. EJ Manuel, quarterback, Florida State
None of the quarterbacks in the Senior Bowl were able to set themselves apart from the rest of the group, but Manuel did look the most impressive of the bunch. He won’t be a high pick, but he showed flashes of brilliance and athletic ability that will intrigue NFL teams. One interesting team to watch when it comes to Manuel is the Philadelphia Eagles with new head coach Chip Kelly.
4. Quinton Patton, wide receiver, Louisiana Tech
Patton impressed scouts all week, not just during the game. In the game, however, he was a standout with his effort on every snap. Despite being a starting wide receiver, Patton was involved in punt coverage and he continued to put everything into every rep. It is that type of hard work that will make Patton attractive for teams. He is willing to give his all in any way necessary to help the team to victory.
3. Kawann Short, defensive tackle, Purdue
Short is a lot like Jerel Worthy, who was drafted just a year ago. Short was a star along the defensive front and showed a quick burst off the line of scrimmage. When Short beats you off the snap, there is no recovering. He can be a terror in the middle of an NFL defensive line.
2. Robert Alford, cornerback, Southeastern Louisiana
Alford’s name was not on the radar coming in to the game, but he was able to make a big impact throughout the week. Alford was dominant on special teams and defense, so it’s safe to say he made himself a lot of money. Alford started the game off with a 90-yard kickoff return and never stopped. He was quick to make plays on the ball and showed great awareness locating the throws. Being a small school prospect won’t scare teams away.
1. Ezekiel Ansah, defensive end, BYU
There was no one more dominating on Saturday afternoon in Mobile than Ezekiel Ansah. The scariest part about Ansah’s game is that he is already so talented, but there is still a lot of room for growth. Ansah is still new to football and will only continue to get better. He is a player in the mold of Jason Pierre-Paul. Entering the week, Ansah was viewed as a first-round prospect likely going in the 20′s, now, Ansah looks like a top fifteen lock and the top ten is not out of the question.
Who were some of the other big winners in Mobile this week? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section.