The Senior Bowl is set to kickoff today at 1 p.m. PT on NFL Network and will feature 106 college seniors hoping to realize a dream of playing in the NFL. Paul Burmeister will provide play by play with help from analysts Mike Mayock and Charles Davis.
History suggests that we can expect ten players from this year's Senior Bowl to be taken in the first round. There have been 52 taken in the last five years including the 49ers' A.J. Jenkins whoplayed in both the East-West Shrine Game and the Senior Bowlin 2012.
An interesting trend has developed for the Niners in the last four years. After hitting the jackpot in 2007 by taking two Senior Bowlers (Patrick Willis and Joe Staley) the Niners selected Senior Bowler Kentwan Balmer in 2008. We all know how that turned out. The Niners did not select another Senior Bowl alum until 2010 when Mike Iupati was drafted with pick 17. TheNiners again skipped a year before drafting their next Senior Bowler picking Jenkins with the 30th overall pick in 2012. So, clearly the Niners aren't selecting anyone from the Senior Bowl in round one this year. (Kidding)
If you missed any this week's coverage check out these links:
As you watch today's game here are some things to look for:
North (Provided by Trevor Woods):
- FS Phillip Thomas, Fresno State - Thomas is an absolute beast. Look for him to provide solid man and zone coverage, while also stopping the run.
- CB Desmond Trufant, Washington - Trufant had a good week at practice and may crack the first round now, a good game from him could mean the 49ers view him as a possible first round choice.
- CB Jordan Poyer, Oregon State - Poyer is my favorite corner (as far as ones the 49ers can select), the only thing he needs work on his tackling.
- DT Margus Hunt, SMU - Had a great week of practices and can help his stock with a good game. Very physical player, raw but his talent is undeniable.
- RB Johnathan Franklin, UCLA - Franklin is trying to solidify himself as one of the top backs in the draft. He hasn't hurt his cause this week and look for a good game from him.
- WR- Chris Harper, Kansas State - Reliable hands, good route runner, dangerous after the catch.
- WR Aaron Mellette, Elon - Mellette looked great in practices and look for a big game from him if he is in long enough
- WR Denard Robinson, Michigan - Robinson was horrible in practice this week, can he salvage his value in this game?
- TE Ryan Otten, San Jose State - Otten is a 3rd-4th round selection who is looking to upgrade his stock today. He's a good receiving tight end who needs to work on his blocking skills.
While the 49ers aren't likely to take a quarterback in the first few rounds, all three on the South have had a decent week of practice and clearly outperformed their counterparts in the North.
Stanford running back Sepfan Taylor is build like Frank Gore and proved this week that his speed isn't the issue scouts thought it might be.
Louisiana Tech wide receiver Quinton Patton was one of the best players on the field. Can he continue his dominance and slip into the second round?
The Niners will likely consider drafting a tight end this year. I'm increasingly hoping Vance McDonald is that guy. He's a wide receiver in a tight end's body and would be perfect replacement for Delanie Walker should be not be resigned.
Small school corners Robert Alford and Leon McFadden opened some eyes this week in practice. Both have great speed and above average coverage ability. They both were considered ‘dark horses' coming into the Senior Bowl, now they're both looking to slip into the first three rounds.
Can the big name disappointments turn it around? EzekialAnsah was very inconsistent in practice and John Jenkins didn't play like a 350 pounder. Both need to have strong games in hopes of regaining some lost momentum heading into pro days and the February combine.
Dustin Hopkins kicked well in the Garnet and Gold at Florida State and that could translate easily nicely to the Red and Gold in San Francisco.
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