Scout.com was at the Senior Bowl with camera, pen and pad in order to gauge the top performers during the week as well as to project the top prospects with the NFL looming. After the week of practice, Jamie Newberg, Tim Yotter, Bill Huber and John Garcia Jr. break down the top players at each position en route to forming the following All-Senior Bowl team.
QB: Mike Glennon, North Carolina State
Garcia’s Take: Glennon made the most “wow” throws during the week with his big arm, though he showed some touch on intermediate and deep throws as well. The only knock on him during the practices was his ability to move in the pocket when dealing with pressure, which is something he will surely continue to address. Glennon was the most consistent quarterback in Mobile and he edges out Tyler Wilson (Arkansas) and E.J. Manuel (Florida State) for the top spot.
RB 1: Stepfan Taylor, Stanford
Huber’s Take: Taylor does everything well, can run with power and speed, and can play all three downs because he can catch the ball and protect the passer.
RB 2: Mike Gillislee, Florida
Newberg’s Take: Gillislee is a speed back not afraid to run between the tackles. He has excellent quickness and very good vision to find space. Gillislee possesses a great burst or extra gear when he needs to get out of trouble and find daylight. On several different occasions, he busted out long runs from scrimmage.
FB: Kyle Juszczyk, Harvard
Garcia’s Take: Juszczyk was the fullback that proved most versatile all week, of course beginning with blocking well. However, he also showed the ability to catch the ball out of the backfield and even break a few tackles as a runner.
WR 1: Quinton Patton, Louisiana Tech
Yotter’s Take: He was the best by a long shot. He isn’t the 6-foot-2 he was originally listed, but he was both athletic and consistent with hands as good as his legs.
WR 2: Chris Harper, Kansas State
Huber’s Take: Harper is 6-foot-1 and 228 pounds but plays bigger than that. He doesn’t have Patton’s acceleration but runs good routes and seems like he’s always open.This was a very close race that included guys like Aaron Dobson (Marshall), Terrance Williams (Baylor) and Marquise Goodwin (Texas).
TE: Nick Kasa, Colorado
Yotter’s Take: Defensive backs don’t want much to do with tackling him, and he somehow finds a way to create separation despite his big frame.
OT: Eric Fisher, Central Michigan
Newberg’s Take: Hands down this is the top prospect here in Mobile. Fisher is a mauler at 6-foot-7 and 305-pounds. He has great size and length and the frame to bulk up even more. At his size he can bend his knees and really move his feet. He gets off the ball very well. Fisher has been a dominant presence on the offensive line and looks like a prototype NFL left tackle.
G: Larry Warford, Kentucky
Huber’s Take: Warford is a hulking, mountain of a man, and he uses that size to his advantage because he plays with leverage and technique.
C: Brian Schwenke, California
Garcia’s Take: Not the biggest or longest of the offensive linemen, but the Cal product is tough up the gut. He put several big defensive tackles on the ground early the practice week, and flexed his muscle as a pass-protector during 1-on-1s as well.
G: Hugh Thornton, Illinois
Garcia’s Take: Strong at the point of attack and relentless thereafter, Thornton was the best drive blocker of the bunch early in the week. He also showed very good balance against the moves of his counterparts during 1-on-1s.
OT: Lane Johnson, Oklahoma
Huber’s Take: Johnson, incredibly, was playing quarterback just a few years ago. He’s had an outstanding week, especially in pass protection, and will only get better with added strength.
DE: Ezekial Ansah, BYU
Newberg’s Take: While he may have underperformed a tad during one on ones Ansah was a nuisance for the offense during the scrimmage. On one play he extended his arms, got underneath a tight end, and drove him off his feet and on his back. A few plays later he batted down a pass. Ansah is big, long and runs very well. I see what all the pre-draft hype is all about.
DT: John Jenkins, Georgia
Yotter’s Take: Jenkins is a big (350-plus) nose tackle that can anchor and shed on run plays and is surprisingly quick with his pass-rush moves. A solid first-round pick for some team.
DT: Sylvester Williams, North Carolina
Huber’s Take: Williams is big enough to hold firm in the run game but quick enough to get into the backfield to disrupt a play. His first step is excellent. At 6-foot-3 and 313 pounds, he’ll have appeal in both defensive schemes.
DE: Alex Okafor, Texas
Huber’s Take: Okafor really is the only defensive player who could challenge Fisher. He’s just so long and athletic at 6-foot-4 5/8. He spent so much time in the North’s backfield that he should have been wearing a white jersey.
LB: Sean Porter, Texas A&M
Garcia’s Take: Porter really helped himself this week with versatility. He got his hands on select passes over the middle in 7-on-7 and team drills, while delivering the hit of the day Wednesday in one of his latest examples of shooting the gap against the run.
LB: Kevin Reddick, North Carolina
Yotter’s Take: Shows the ability to recognize and react quickly on plays in front of him.
LB: Nico Johnson, Alabama
Huber’s Take: Johnson is an old-school middle linebacker. He’ll never be a three-down player but he’s as sturdy as they come against the run. There weren’t too many stuffed running plays that didn’t have No. 35 in the pile.
CB: Leon McFadden, San Diego State
Yotter’s Take: He is always trying to pry at the ball and make a difference, even if he doesn’t get to the ball before the receiver.
CB: Desmond Trufant, Washington
Huber’s Take: Trufant is an outstanding player who potentially could surge into the first-round conversation. The brother of longtime NFL standout corner Marcus Trufant, Desmond is aggressive, physical and confident in his skills. If his aggression can be toned down just a bit, he’s going to have a great career.
S: Johnathan Cyprien, Florida International
Garcia’s Take: Cyprien did two things better than any defensive back in Mobile. Talk trash and back it up. Whether it was a jarring hit, which became a staple of just about every practice, or physical plays against receivers and tight ends – he made a big impact.
S T.J. McDonald, USC
Yotter’s Take: He will be a long-time starter for any team looking for a physical safety. He knows he needed to prove he has the range to cover and appeared at least adequate in that aspect.
K: Dustin Hopkins, Florida State
Huber’s Take: Dustin Hopkins has a much bigger leg than his counterpart, Quinn Sharp of Oklahoma State. The ball just explodes off his foot. No worries for Sharp, though: He’s considered an NFL-quality punter.
P: Jeff Locke, UCLA
Huber’s Take: Locke has a big leg and can have a long NFL career if he can become more consistent.
LS: Carson Tinker, Alabama
Garcia’s Take: Tinker gets the ball to both the punter and holder with unreal consistency. Pressure or situation never seemed to rattle him in college, and it carrier over to Senior Bowl week.