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2024 East-West Shrine Bowl: West Team Game Notes

2024 Shrine Bowl

(Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

2024 Shrine Bowl
The 2024 East-West Shrine Bowl has concluded. Here is everything you need to know about the West Team during the game. (Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports)

2024 East-West Shrine Bowl: West Team Game Notes

I’m tired and for some reason, the NFL can’t figure out that scheduling the East-West Shrine game the same week as the Senior Bowl is completely idiotic. The East-West game doesn’t even have televised practices that we have access to. It’s been a long week, I don’t have enough help, and I’m going to do the best I can here.

I apologize for being late with this post. My blogging team stinks so I’m playing hero ball for literally every sport. Also, since this event is poorly run I couldn’t even get access to a box score until the following day. I could have released the post but don’t think it has the same punch without the actual player stats. Blame these idiots for bad management. Doing the best I can here.

Here are the West Team game notes for the 2024 East-West Shrine Game.


I’m on record for not liking Taulia Tagovailoa nearly as much as his brother. Hey, looked pretty good in this game though. Had a really nice completion down the field that’s worth sharing. Finished the game 9/14 for 142 passing yards. Still doesn’t have a big arm but there were things to like. Numbers actually should have been better without a few drops.

You’re going to have to build the system around what he does. RPO maniac. Gets the ball out fast, he’s accurate, looked like he belongs. Had a scramble where he beat a defender on a run for a score. Underrated athlete and can make plays on the move.

In fairness, the defense is totally vanilla. They’re not messing with the coverages at all and he’s kinda picking apart windows. Still, he played well and popped through the screen. That matters.

Running Backs:

I’m just going to say that my running back rankings are going to look VERY different from what the Draft Busters guys have. Today we got to see Frank Gore Jr. and he popped off a big run in this game. He’s tough and he’s faster than his dad. Very nice to see him rip off a run like this.

He runs hard too. Just wish he was a tick bigger. Doesn’t mess around and just goes. Six carries for 87 yards and a score speaks for itself.

Blake Watson is another one of these Tony Pollard mold of players who can play receiver and running back. Not saying he’s the next Pollard. Just the archetype of the player. It’s now a matter of how good Watson actually is. He did a lot of great things in the passing game, but Davis Webb was calling some insane screen plays pulling out all the stops.

At the end of the game, Watson had a chance to score ripping off a big run with a 15 point lead and took a field in the middle of the field during an All-Star game. Feels like a noob move to me.

Jabari Small was the backup running back at Tennessee. Doesn’t look slow but I’m not a fan. Not after that game. There is no special there. Six carries for 17 yards of meh.

Wide Receivers:

I was already a fan of Tahj Washington. Didn’t see anything otherwise in this one. Ran tough too in this one which hasn’t always been the case. Looking for contact. Three catches for 41 yards and overall solid. Not as juiced up as Jordan Addison but can be a similar type of guy.

Tight Ends:

I don’t know what’s going on with South Dakota State but they might have some football players. 6-foot-6, 264, Zach Heins may have something here. Made one catch for 26 yards but it was impressive. Big target, obviously.

They have twin brothers at receiver too entering this draft. Maybe I need to watch some South Dakota State football before the draft.

Offensive Line:

I’m not going to get too far in the weeds here. All I’ll say here is that this unit was creating real holes in the run game. The South Dakota State guys (Garret Greenfield & Mason McCormick) both looked good. Both started the game and that unit was moving and grooving.

Defensive Line:

So there is a trio of Murphy’s and they all kinda wrecked the game. Grayson and Gabriel Murphy are twins who play for UCLA. I’m not going to tell you which twin brother is better. They look the exact same. We’ll figure out if there’s any gap closer to the draft. Grayson had two sacks but they both looked the same to me.

Then there’s Myles Murphy at UNC. A guy that felt like he was in the backfield the whole game. He had a sack in the game.


Umm… who is this UCLA linebacker Darius Muasau? First play of the game this monster is clocking dudes right in the hole. Good first impression. Apparently, he’s also the captain of the West team. Probably a good sign.


QB play was so bad that I don’t want to jump to conclusions. We’ll keep it moving.


Some talk during the game (Steve Sarkisian was in the booth at the time) that Ryan Watts is going to potentially play safety. I’ll admit, I didn’t see that coming so my brain needs time to figure that out. I was a fan during the year.

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