The 2018 Reese’s Senior Bowl kicks up a notch on the second day of practices. After an acclimation period, the pads come on with some serious hitting today. The teams watching want to see how quickly players can pick up the terminology and if they can make the adjustments to improve each day.
The South team seems to have the edge when it comes to overall offensive line play and outside skill position players. The practices are also a lot more fluid because they have better quarterbacks. Who stood out on day two for the South Team?
These quarterbacks just stink. In fact, they’re so bad that they make the practice painful to watch. Coach Bill O’Brien had an interesting quote during the practice “Redirect your eyes with your feet”. There’s not one quarterback in this group that could come close to doing that. I truthfully feel robbed of my time as a human being typing these words. That’s how bad this group is. Three of the four quarterbacks should be moved from undraftable to crossing of your board when it comes to the undrafted signing period. Kurt Benkert has a chance to make it as a backup. I’ve never seen a display of quarterbacks who couldn’t even hit a bubble screen. I’m speaking to you Brandon Silvers of Troy.
Dear Kyle Lauletta – Could you stare any harder at one receiver wow.
Dear Mike White – I swear my 8-year-old brother has more arm strength than you do. Embarrassing….. Put some mustard on that out route. C’mon man.
Kurt Benkert….. Good job dude. You at least put some effort out there. He hit J’Mon Moore for a deep touchdown and really was the only one that could do anything.
The South practice spent a lot of time in goal line drills. The only problem is one of the three guys are change of pace backs who will never be in that situation (Ito Smith – Southern Miss). The one who flashed was Rashaad Penny who continues to be on my radar. He could be your Kareem Hunt of this year. Penny continues to show nice cuts for a three-down thumper.
I mean this was just so hard to watch because the quarterbacks kept leaving that taste in your mouth after you throw up. Seriously watch this, D.J. Chark of LSU runs a great route and the throw isn’t even close. I mean not close.
You can’t knock Chark, still have to evaluate the route. LSU has produced great receivers in recent years such as Odell Beckham and Jarvis Landry. Chark already looks like he can run routes pretty well despite coming from a system where the quarterback usually stinks. Hey, this must not have felt much different!
The UCF guys really balled out. Jordan Akins, the tight end, comes in at 6-foot-3, 246, and held up in the blocking drills as well. He was absolutely the best route running tight end on the South. You don’t see a lot of tight ends reel in one-handed catches either. The one problem is he is already 26 because of his extensive baseball background. The receiver Tre’Quan Smith was open all day. It’s not hard to see why Central Florida was so good this year. I mean Smith was open all day. Check out him beat Alabama’s Levi Wallace and get 5 feet away in the red zone touchdown somehow. He has moved up on my watch list for sure.
The Okie State guys James Washington and Marcell Ateman are starting to fall on my list. Washington is built by a running back but I think I overestimated his speed. He doens’t appear to be the burner I watched in college. Ateman also can’t seperate from the corner but is absolutley huge. This might have just been a Big 12 system thing.
The most interesting receiver is J’Mon Moore of Missouri. You want to talk about a height, weight, speed demon….. This is your guy. You can’t say enough good things about the Mizzou receiver. He runs really well and can really run route for a guy his size (6-foot-3, 205). He caught the touchdown in the clip above from Kurt Benkert.
Isaiah Wynn is the stand out here. He literally won every rep. I’m starting to think this guy could definitely play tackle in the NFL despite his short arms in a pinch. He did play a hell of a left tackle at Georgia. This guy just has some awesome traits. It’s as simple as that. Wynn shoots the hands, stays square, powerful, big anchor, and recovers well when he gets beat off the ball. The clip below is his worst rep just for an example to see him recover even when things don’t go his way.
Other than that it appears to be a really solid offensive line class that’s getting difficult to distinguish. Alex Cappa (Humbolt State) is improving each and every day but needs to fix his stance and strength. There’s raw potential with him. Say the same thing about Brandon Parker (NC A&T) who is coming off a horrendous day one. I guess it’s expected to have an adjustment period for two small school guys.
Austin Corbett (Nevada) and Colby Gossett (App State) are also intriguing.
Now let’s get to the bad. Bradley Bozeman (Alabama) took a big step back. He got jacked back twice in the drills and even fell over after a strong day one. Austin Golson (Auburn) also got bull rushed pretty bad.
Poona Ford of Texas had himself a day. You could say he pooed on the competition. He plays with great leverage and really pushed the pocket. This isn’t anything we haven’t seen at the East-West game. He’s been really awesome.
The other guy who came in with real buzz was Marcus Davenport. My problem with him was his initial get off. Slow of the ball when he was on the line of scrimmage but looked a lot better standing up. That’s what he did in college so maybe this guy needs to be a 3-4 edge rusher. I want to see more of an array of moves besides a bull rush.
Uchenna Nwosu has been disappointing. There’s just no burst. Nothing jumps off the screen. He’s also not a natural pass rusher. If he doesn’t win with speed, he doesn’t win.
Shaquem Griffin might just be the best player on the field. Is it possible that having one hand actually makes him better? I was shocked how well he stood up in the run game really setting an edge for a 220-pound linebacker. This guy is so athletic the coaches had him playing safety. There’s no doubt this guy is going to be a steal on draft day.
If you want to watch a linebacker just fly around the field. Pay attention to Dorian O’Daniel. You have to be super talented to lead Clemson in tackles. He’s undersized but he wows you with his ability to fly around the football.
I’ll be honest, there isn’t a corner that’s standing out in a big way. I like Levi Wallace from Alabama but he wasn’t perfect. I want to know more behind the story of him starting at Alabama as a former walk-on.
M.J. Stewart got beat pretty consistently which was disappointing for a top pick. The small school guys seemed very grabby getting flags thrown at them left and right. Then there was the fact that these quarterbacks stink. Give me clarity, please!