The NFLPA Collegiate Bowl kicks off today at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, California. Like the Shrine Game, the NFLPA Bowl is an annual All-Star game by invitation that consists of players mostly in division one (FBS) as well as the FCS division. This bowl game offers draft-eligible prospects an opportunity to work with NFL coaches and scouts and showcase their talents as they prepare for the core stages of the NFL Draft process. Coaching the American Squad will be Chicago Bears defensive coordinator Chuck Pagano. Coaching the National squad will be former NFL head coach Mike Tice. This All Star Bowl Game offers scouts, evaluators, and the fans an opportunity to catch some of the NFL Draft prospects in action.
For this game Greg, Alex, and Josh have provided two prospects a piece to keep a close eye on. These prospects are playing at positions of need for the San Francisco 49ers.
NFLPA Collegiate Bowl Game
Kickoff: 2:00 p.m. (PT)
T.V. Viewing: FS1
Location: Rose Bowl - Pasadena, California
Roster: National and American team rosters
American Coach: Chuck Pagano
National Coach: Mike Tice
Jamell Garcia-Williams, Edge, No. 99 - UAB
Height: 6072 | Weight: 249 | 40 time: 4.90
2018 Stats: 9.5 sacks, 43 tackles, 15.5 tackles for loss, 4 pass deflections, and 1 fumble recovery
Jamell Garcia-Williams is the type of prospect you find at the end of the draft where impressive measurables and athleticism could turn into a diamond in the rough. At nearly 6-foot-8-inches Garcia-Williams is an imposing opponent on the field with vines for limbs and a well built edge defender that is very athletic and nimble (great balance) for a man his size with good speed and great foot quickness. Although he is still developing his game (one year collegiate starter), Garcia-Williams comes from NFL bloodlines (father played for the Pittsburgh Steelers and older brother currently plays for the Denver Broncos) and displays a high football IQ that marries well with his athleticism and size.
Garcia-Williams shows quick burst off the line, uses hands very well and is a penetrating disruptive force in the backfield with great speed off the edge, good conversion from speed to power, and takes full advantage of his length and body control hitting with explosion (nice closing speed). A nose for the football, Garcia-Williams displays a good ability to play front-side blocks at the point of attack with solid functional strength (will need to further develop) and the quickness and fluidity to disengage (takes advantage of his length but needs more consistency). Moreover, he shows a good ability to defend against back-side blocks maneuvering through the trash with impressive quickness and closing speed. An intelligent prospect that has shown the capacity to improve throughout the season, Garcia-Williams’ arrow will continue to rise, and with further coaching improving his technique and his NFL ready size, length, and athleticism, the ceiling will inevitably be high for the young prospect.
Hjalte Froholdt, OG/C, No. 51 - Arkansas
Height: 6044 | Weight: 306 | 40 time: 5.26
Hjalte Froholdt was introduced to football his sophomore year of high school as a foreign exchange student from Svendborg, Denmark. It was love at first sight, as Froholdt embraced the sport and natural talent kicked in. Making the transition from defensive line to the offensive side of the ball during his sophomore year at Arkansas, Froholdt is still relatively new to the position, and despite arriving a bit late to the party, he has shown the capacity to improve and his willingness to learn and continue to grow is a testament to his hard work and flourishing leadership skills.
Froholdt displays a great combination of size, strength, toughness, football instincts, improving awareness, and athleticism. An intelligent anchor on the offensive line, Froholdt showcases great foot agility moving laterally after the snap, active and strong hands (needs more pop), good strength to drive defenders sealing them away from the action and opening holes finishing blocks (inconsistent) displaying excellent movement reaching the second level. Moreover, Froholdt showcases solid quickness, sound athletic ability and somewhat efficient technique (flashes of terrific technique), anchors the pocket extremely well setting a quality base for the quarterback to climb, and nice balance when anchoring in pass protection. Functional strength and the ability to play with more physicality is needed at the next level. Shows the versatility to play guard and center.
E.J. Ejiya, LB, No. 22 (American Team) - North Texas
Height: 6’3” | Weight: 231 | Projected 40: 4.69
2018 Stats: 121 Tackles, 25.5 tackles for a loss, 9 sacks, 1 forced fumble
E.J. Ejiya has had a successful and productive senior season. A high-volume tackler who wraps his opponents quickly to the ground. Has good size for his position, and the measurebales that scouts and evaluators seek at the pro level. Has demonstrated his abilities to defend against the run, and has the range to defend in pass coverage. Plays with the speed and aggressive style of a linebacker/safety hybrid. These types of prospects are being sought more and more by scouts and evaluators in the pass-happy NFL. Against a Power 5 and SEC opponent in Arkansas, Ejiya led all tacklers with twelve on the afternoon and was the highest graded linebacker in the nation in Week 3 (85.5 – Pro Football Focus).
His primary position at North Texas has been at the WILL linebacker in their 3-3-5 system. His sideline to sideline speed are amongst his best traits and his ability to make plays over the top of the line of scrimmage offer him numerous opportunities to make a positive impact. Described as being very coachable with the will to learn more. Ejiya’s arrow is pointing up.
Nico Evans, RB, No. 22 - Wyoming
Height: 5’9” | Weight: 211 | Projected 40: 4.48
2018 Stats: 1,325 yards, 8 touchdowns, 66 yards receiving, 1 touchdown.
Nico Evans is a bruising running back for the Wyoming Cowboys. Evans does an efficient job of running between the tackles on many of his carriers. Evans has demonstrated his ability to be patient, while following his blockers and running through open holes and gaps along the line of scrimmage. The senior has had some big games this season for the Cowboys including a 187-yard performance and 58-yard score. Evans can be shifty on the field as he looks to evade oncoming opponents on the defense.
Evans will take care of the football, and has strong, reliable hands. Evans is not a major receiving threat but has demonstrated his ability to catch the football when called upon. Evans is not getting a whole lot of national media attention playing at Wyoming, however he could be a good value pick on day three of the NFL draft to add more competition and roster depth.