[Draft] Shrine and Senior Bowl: looking for the new star!

If players are evaluated during the college season, the draft process is at least as important to their ratings. The NFL Combine and private tours are among them. Also, the very important week of East West Shrine Bowl and Senior Bowl.

1- The Senior Bowl

The event

Since 1950, it has brought together the cream of qualified players in Mobile, Alabama. At the invitation of the committee in charge of the event, 110 players meet there under the eyes of the decision-makers of the 32 NFL franchises. Three days of training, with various workshops, and a match between the two squads.

In the recent past, players like Justin Herbert, Von Miller, Dak Prescott or Tariq Woolen have distinguished themselves there. From January 31 to February 04, 2023, players will be divided into two teams, National and American. Players will be supported by professional coaches: In 2023, Patrick Graham (Raiders/defensive coordinator) and Luke Getsy (Bears/O coordinator) will be the HCs (head coach), aided by staff from other NFL franchises.

The best players

  • Hendon Hooker, QB, Tennessee

Over the 2021 and 2022 seasons, Hendon Hooker threw 6080 yards and 58 touchdowns! Plus 1,000 yards on the ground and 10 touchdowns. Although older than average (25 years since January 13), he offers an attractive profile for the NFL. Injured during the season, he is present to meet the teams during private meetings. He should be able to play again in March and thus make visits for the franchises.

He will be accompanied by six other quarterbacks including university finalist Max Duggan (TCU). Also by quality players with perhaps the future Brock Purdy among them? Like Jake Haener (Fresno State) and Clayton Tune (Houston).

  • Tyree Wilson, Edge, Texas Tech

The 2023 draft will be a defensive vintage! Tyree Wilson has the perfect physique to play outside of a defensive line. He is a candidate for the top 10 in the draft: more on this player this Tuesday, January 31 (at 1 p.m.).

  • Devon Witherspoon, BC, IL

For many he is already in the top 3 cornerbacks for the next draft. A top-notch game intelligence and a physical game made for Sunday clashes, Devon Witherspoon will also play big during private interviews: he and all the others are also evaluated on their personalities.

  • Chase Brown, RB, IL

Because in the modern NFL a runner must also contribute in the aerial game, Chase Brown already has a very solid rating with the NFL staffs. The return of Austin Ekeler (Chargers)? The line-up at this position is superb with also Tyjae Spears (Tulane), Chris Rodriguez (Kentucky), Kenny McIntosh (Georgia), the great Cameroon Peoples (App State) and the mover Roshon Johnson (Texas).

Note that his twin brother, Sydney Brown, will also be present as a safety (60 tackles and 6 interceptions in 2022)!

  • Charlie Jones, WR, Purdue

A receiver Patriots Style : not very tall, not the most athletic but so precise in his lines and reliable every week. Charlie Jones will be well surrounded with also in his position the complete Rashee Rice (SMU), Trey Palmer (Nebraska), the supersonic Nathaniel Dell (Houston) and the future NFL starter Xavier Hutchinson (Iowa State).

  • Dawand Jones, OT, Ohio State

It’s a rock, it’s a peak, it’s a peninsula! The Buckeyes tackle is comparable to Trenton Brown with his 2m03 and 160 kilos! He is a top 50 contender and will be joined by a host of future NFL players on the offensive line: Blake Freeland (OT/BYU), Andrew Vorhees (OG/USC), Darnell Wright (OT/Tennessee), Steve Avila ( OG/TCU), Cody Mauch (OT/North Dakota State) and John Michael Schmitz (OC/Minnesota).

  • Ivan Pace, LB, Cincinnati

Joining his brother DeShawn in Cincinnati in 2022, Ivan Pace showed why he had dominated the weaker MAC conference before: intelligent, he recognizes the called game very quickly and his physical qualities allow him a formidable speed of intervention!

Incisive on the 3rd attempt (10 sacks), he somewhat pays for his lack of size regarding his projection in the NFL. But what a player: a franchise will be called smart for having selected him in the 2023 draft.

The possible ascents

  • Tyson Bagent, QB, Shepherd

Quarterback of division 2 (3rd university level) and son of a former professional « arm wrestling », Tyson Bagent is one of the attractions of the 2023 edition. He is the author in 2022 of 4580 yards and 41 touchdowns, after a 2021 season with 53 touchdowns. He has a powerful arm and the prototype template but be careful: you will hear about his hands being too small!

  • Andrei Iosivas, WR, Princeton

Seeing a second-level college player go up against the best gives NFL managers good guidance. 1m93 for 90 kilos, this receiver will have to learn playbooks much more complicated in the NFL. But his superior athletic qualities give him some airs of Christian Watson (Packers): see end of article.

  • Andre Carter II, Edge, Army

Son of a former 7th overall pick by the 49ers (2001), he grew up with a dad playing 13 seasons in the NFL. And at the same post too! He is tall, quick and flexible to outflank the attacking linemen.

After a thunderous 2021 season, Andre Carter was unable to reproduce his 14.5 sacks in 2022. He will therefore play his future in Alabama by being compared in a high quality edition to this position: Tyree Wilson (Texas Tech) , Isaiah Foskey (Notre Dame), Zach Harrison (Ohio State), Derick Hall (Auburn), Byron Young (Tennessee) and Will McDonald (Iowa State). Very heavy!

  • Karl Brooks, DT, Bowling Green

At the heart of college football! A small town in the depths of Ohio, Bowling Green never has a star. But Karl Brooks has qualities allowing him to consider an NFL contract.

Expert in putting pressure, the 1 vs 1 against the offensive linemen (oklahoma drill) can allow him to score a few more points: if this workshop may seem derisory in comparison to a match situation, these duels nevertheless represent the basis of what is required of this position.

  • Julius Brents, BC, Kansas State

Offering a profile similar to that offered by Tariq Woolen (Seahawks) in 2022, Julius Brents will be observed. Very big and productive (4 interceptions in 2022), he is a credible candidate to be a riser of this 2023 edition. He will have to distinguish himself from top 50 candidates for this cornerback position such as Devon Witherspoon, Tyrique Stevenson (Miami) and Kyu Blu Kelly (Stanford).

  • Thomas Incoom, DE, Central Michigan

Author of 19 tackles for losses in 2022, pass rusher Thomas Incoom intends to capitalize during the Senior Bowl. Because he performed against opponents at an unequal level, measuring himself against the cream of players from the best programs can allow him to show that he has a future in the NFL. Or not !

2- The East West Shrine Bowl

The event

Since 1925, this event has brought together a selection of a hundred other university players. Organized to raise funds exclusively for the care of sick children, the Shrine annually offers a stage one step below the Senior Bowl. However, he still offers quality players to build the depth of a squad.

In 2022, quarterbacks Skylar Thompson (Dolphins) and noted Brock Purdy (49ers) were playing on the team West. The 2022 edition had also shown many future NFL players: Isiah Pacheco (Chiefs), Tyquan Thornton, Pierre Strong and Jack Jones (Patriots) or Jelani Woods (Colts).

In 2023, the staffs of the New England Patriots and the Atlanta Falcons will be in charge. The game will be played on the night of Thursday, February 2 at 2:30 a.m. in Las Vegas (Raiders stadium), live on NFL Network.

Players to follow

  • Dorian Thompson-Robinson, QB, UCLA

Quarterback with the main strength of being an excellent runner, DTR has also shown progress in passing in 2022 with his 27 touchdowns (10 INT). This match as well as the NFL Combine will be decisive as to his odds for the 2023 draft.

  • Zay Flowers, WR, Boston College

In an average and homogeneous cuvée, Zay Flowers must take advantage of the event to distinguish itself. Author of a season with more than 1000 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2022, the flower of Boston is a candidate for the top 50. Explosive and intelligent, he will be accompanied in this position by the much bigger Jake Bobo (UCLA), AT Perry ( Wake Forest) and the misnamed Justin Shorter (Florida).

  • Shaquan Davis, WR, South Carolina State

Tall and with long arms of 50 yards or so, Shaq Davis comes from the lower level but his skills are attractive: see end of article.

  • Jose Ramirez, DE, Eastern Michigan

Although he does not have the ideal size for this position among the pros, Jose Ramirez is still a quality player. His activity makes him a smart choice in the 6th or 7th round of the draft: taking care of the defensive line is an essential mantra in the NFL.

  • Tre’Vious Hodges-Tomlinson, CB, TCU

The nephew of the famous Ladainian Tomlinson defended 35 passes in three seasons. Yes, but his size somewhat complicates his projection in the NFL: 1m75 for 79 kilos. Certainly the examples exist but how many of them? So let’s finish with a quiz: how many cornerbacks of his size played in the NFL in 2022?

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