The college all star games are coming up in just a few short months. The Senior Bowl and Shrine Game are two of the most well-known games from these events, and the organizers of each event have started to list accepted invites. Here's the first set of players for each event:
Robinette, Jalen. WR. Air Force. Jalen Robinette has been a productive receiver at Air Force, and will attempt to use the Shrine Game to propel himself into the 2017 NFL Draft. NFLdraftscout.com has him as their 45th overall receiver in the 2017 draft, which puts him in undrafted territory. Robinette is a player who could benefit hugely from this event. Robinette has decent hands and runs solid routes, but lacks a signature "WOW" factor as a prospect. That being said, he's a guy that could find a role on special teams or as a depth receiver. He projects as a likely undrafted player right now, but could impress teams with a strong showing. Here's some film.
Baker, Toby. P. Arkansas. Baker is a player who could enter the 2017 NFL draft viewed as the best punting prospect on the board. NFLdraftscout.com has him ranked as the 6th overall punter, but he's getting more attention as the season goes on. Some analysts have him first on their boards. One thing is for sure, Baker is a punting prospect who could find his way into the NFL. He's likely an undrafted player, but teams with a need at the position will pay attention to him at the Senior Bowl.
Etta-Tawo, Amba. WR. Syracuse. Etta-Tawo is a graduate transfer at Syracuse this season following a successful career at Maryland. In 2016, he's recorded two 200 yard receiving games, broke Marvin Harrison's team record for most receiving yards in a season, and recorded 1,242 yards and 8 touchdowns on 78 receptions in 2016. The guy is productive, but there are some questions about his game. Watching film, there seems to be a disconnect between him and the quarterback from time to time; either he's slightly out of position on catches or the quarterback's placement seems to be slightly off position; appears that the quarterback's placement on throws is questionable. Etta-Tawo will make defenders miss, and has the strength to fight for yardage. He's not going to be a pure #1 guy in an NFL system, but I could picture him as a mid-to-late round guy with James Jones upside. NFLdraftscout.com has him 12th on their WR board. A solid showing for scouts will keep him in the draft conversation, a poor performance at the event could see him slip into the later rounds.
Everett, Gerald. TE. South Alabama. Everett has averaged almost 71 yards a game in 2016, with 41 receptions for 637 yards and 4 TDs. NFLdraftscout has him relatively low-ranked as their 11th overall tight end, but this ranking is low to me. Walterfootball.com has him ranked as a 3rd or 4th round pick. Here's some film. Would be a solid #2 TE in the NFL, with the potential to emerge as a #1 in the right system.
Gerry, Nate. SS. Nebraska. Gerry could emerge as a nice hybrid option in the NFL; has the size and speed to emerge as a S/LB hybrid at the next level. NFLDraftscout.com has him rated as their 7th overall safety prospect. I think that ranking is actually low; I think he's got the talent to emerge as a key piece of an NFL defense as he adjusts to the league. There's definitely some starter potential here. Here's some film.
Kupp, Cooper. WR. Eastern Washington. This kid will be special. Kupp is the best WR in the FCS, and one of the best WRs in college football. I've seen him projected anywhere from the 3rd to the 6th round, but I think this kid has the potential to be a special NFL player; I'd call a Brian Hartline-type career his floor. Here's my writeup on Kupp.
Morgan, Jordan. G. Kutztown. Morgan is one of the better players in DII football, and will hope to use a strong showing at the Senior Bowl to propel himself into draft conversations. He's currently projected as nfldraftscout.com as their 26th ranked OG in this class, but school size plays a role in that ranking. Right now he's in undrafted territory, but definitely a name to watch heading into the draft. He could catch on as a developmental player with a strong showing at this event.
Moton, Taylor. T/G. Western Michigan. Moton is an extremely versatile offensive lineman, who has started coplete seasons both at guard and at tackle. His junior season, he was a strong part of the offensive line at Western Michigan at guard, and this season, he has been one of the best right tackles in the nation. NFLDraftscout.com has him ranked as their 2nd overall tackle in the 2016 draft class, and that's not a bad ranking for him. There's first round NFL starter potential with Moton.
Rogers, Sam. FB. Virginia Tech. Rogers is a bit of a throwback player. Solid blocker at fullback who has contributed both as a rusher and as a receiver as well. He's even thrown a touchdown pass this season. NFLdraftscout.com has him as their 2nd ranked FB in this draft class, and he's a player that should slip into the later rounds of the draft. Will earn an offensive role at the next level in the right system. Here's some film.
Russell, Seth. QB. Baylor. Seth Russell is an outstanding quarterback out of Baylor. He's a bit of a divisive prospect, with nfldraftscout.com listing him as their 5th ranked quarterback (which likely drops him into the middle rounds) and some more aggressive rankings listing him as a potential first round pick. I think, especially following a devastating leg injury, that he falls into the middle rounds. He has the talent to be a solid backup, and a potential starter in the right system. He's been insanely productive in college, but coming out of Baylor will he continue to thrive in the NFL? Many scouts question the gimmicky nature of Baylor's offense. That being said, Russell is an interesting prospect who can definitely help his chances at the Senior Bowl. Here's some film.
Switzer, Ryan. WR. North Carolina. Ryan Switzer is one of my favorite receivers in this draft class for his versatility. I like him not only for his skill as a receiver, but also as one of the best punt returners in college football. NFLdraftscout.com has him ranked as their #8 receiver in this draft class, but that ranking may be a bit low. A first round grade on him might be a bit high, but he could be the next Tavon Austin/Cordarrelle Patterson/Percy Harvin prospect to come out of college. In the right system, he could be a dynamic playmaker in the NFL, both as a complementary receiver and as a return man. Here's some film.
Taylor, Taywan. WR. Western Kentucky. Taylor is the all time leader in receiving yards and touchdowns at Western Kentucky. He is also (as of week 11), the 3rd receiver in the nation, with 1340 yards on 77 catches. He's scored 13 touchdowns in that stretch. Has the athletic talent to be a useful complementary piece at the next level, and should find his way into an NFL offense. Nfldraftscout.com has him listed as their 10th ranked receiver. Could carve out a role for himself as a #2 guy in the NFL. There's some upside here, and Taylor could see his stock rise heading into the spring. Here's some film.
Webb, Davis. QB. Cal. Davis Webb is a graduate transfer from Texas Tech. Over his first 10 games at Cal, he has thrown for 3,600 yards and 33 touchdowns. Kiper likes Webb a lot, projecting him as his #1 ranked senior quarterback back in February. The love doesn't stop there; Nfldraftscout.com has him ranked as the #1 quarterback in this draft class. Davis Webb is likely a first round lock heading into the 2017 NFL draft, and will be in the conversation, along with Dashaun Watson, as the first quarterback off the board. Potential every-game starter in the NFL. Here's some film.
That's all for the first set of Senior Bowl and Shrine Game acceptances, but I will update things as more acceptances are released!--Mike B.
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