2021 Reeses Senior Bowl: American Team Day 2 Notes
Once again, we didn’t get to see the first day of practices outside of a stupid one-hour recap show. I would have had a rant about it but Jim Nagy and I are best friends now so I’ll leave it alone. Hey… the 2021 Reeses Senior Bowl is back!
We’re getting no combine this year so the Senior Bowl is uber important this year. Starting with the American Team coached by the Panthers staff, who stood out for better or worse? Here are your Day 2 practice notes.
Mac Jones is playing this week when he does have to. Hey, good on him though. Early in the team drill, Mac ripped a play action pass to Tre McKitty. Mac just gets it. Led his team down for a score. Was poised finding the right target and creating throwing angles.
His ball placement is always on point. The feet are tied to his hands. He pushes off the back foot. The mechanics are locked and loaded. The guy threw darts all day. The ball goes exactly where he wants it to go every time. Total command couldn’t have looked better.
Jamie Newman has a lot to prove. I have no idea why he didn’t play this year at Georgia. It was a disastrous mistake. It’s easy to see why Newman has talent. The pure arm strength is there.
Newman threw a bad pick in 11 on 11. Newman sailed a ball high on a throw that was well late. He then threw another pick on the very next play on a ball that was tipped. The accuracy was really poor all day. Stock way down on Newman.
I will not waste time talking about Kellen Mond. The guy just fucking sucks. That’s it. End of story.
Kylin Hill got yelled at for running out of bounds. You would think that’s something small but Hill already has character issues coming in. Hill had problems at Mississippi State. Makes you question it more. Rhule was up his ass all practice. Hill is the most talented of the bunch but still had knuckle head mistakes.
In other news, Hill caught the ball out of the backfield which is a good sign. Hill has by far the best feet in this group. Much more nimble and quicker than the rest of the group.
Chris Evans just isn’t an elite knee bender. I know it sounds stupid but that burst in the ball drill just wasn’t there. There’s no twitch here. Evans just looks SLOW.
Larry Roundtree looked like he struggled with balance. He was off his feet trying to cut and fell over catching a pass without being covered. I thought it was a shaky showing in the early portion of the day.
In route drills, Roundtree looked lost. Even going through bags, his feet were heavy and clunky. Trying to run up the field, Roundtree couldn’t track the ball and looked slow. If you don’t have instincts, balance, or speed; what are you good for?
Kadarius Toney is the fastest man on the field but struggled to catch the ball today. It was a bit of a red flag. Gotta reel in the gimme’s. He dropped more than one ball. Toney hobbled off during 11 on 11 too.
Cornell Powell isn’t getting enough love. He starts on a lot of teams but got lost in the shuffle at Clemson. His pure speed should be better than average.
Amari Rodgers also struggled catching the ball. You could tell he’s (maybe?) better than Powell but not by as much as people think. Rodgers did make a great catch on a 50-50 ball for a touchdown against Mark Webb.
Racey McMath at LSU doesn’t look like someone that should play at LSU. Yes, that’s an insult. Almost looks like a blocking tight end, not a smooth wide out by the way he moves.
Marquez Stevenson looks like a fast guy with not much else to him. Again, Stevenson was another victimized by the drops. Amazing how this group couldn’t catch the ball.
Alex Leatherwood may have been beat by Roche but he rebounded as expected. Malik Herring had no answer for Leatherwood and there was an extra pep in his step.
Trey Smith lined up at left guard during the 9 on 7 drills. I thought he opened up some big holes. He’s also someone I’ve kept my eye on at Tennessee. Especially at guard? He’s a big dude that could wind up being a steal. In run drills, Smith and Leatherwood were people movers.
Tre McKitty made a couple of great catches. He didn’t have a ton of production in college but you can see he has the necessary athletic traits to make it. Natural hands catcher and ran crisp routes.
Jabril Cox can really cover. I thought he moved around well in space. We saw this in college but Cox can run with anybody.
Quincy Roche from Miami was a standout. Right off the bat his bend and get off were awesome. He stuck Alex Leatherwood in his back pocket before he knew what hit him. Just pure speed around the edge was enough to kick his ass.
Roche was AWESOME. The Iowa tackle got steam rolled and never had a chance.
Carlos Basham came to play. Immediately the pass rushing moves stood out. Basham got by Iowa with a quick swim move. Powerful and looked like he’s been practicing this since he was five.
Matt Rhule was all over Houston defensive lineman Payton Turner. He had a rough go of it falling on the ground and just struggling in general.
Cameron Sample stood out as well. He got by the Iowa guard with ease.
Robert Rochell got hit with a flag and then pulled up injured on the play.
The UCF cornerback Aaron Robinson was all over people. He might get hit with a flag but he wasn’t giving up anything.
I thought Mark Webb looked really great in the red zone drill. Against Amari Rodgers, Webb flipped his hips, changed his direction and beat Rodgers forcing an incompletion.
DJ Daniel looks a bit longer but also had a great day. Georgia corners I’ll trust all day.
Tyree Gillespie stumbled in the red zone drill. Got burned on a double move.
Shawn Davis dropped and easy pick and sort of got lost in coverage. I’m not sure he was within 5 yards of anybody he was covering. He did later get his interception off Newman.
Side Note: I was blown away by Matt Rhule. He’s a home run hire. Guy ran a hell of a practice. I thought much better than Miami’s practice. Much higher energy and so much more insight with attention to detail for each player.