NFL Draft Expert Mike Mayock names 10 prospects that impressed at the Senior Bowl:
Predicting the NFL Draft is like playing the stock market.
From now until the end of April, values of prospects will inevitably rise and fall as the process plays out in scouting departments across the league. The Senior Bowl, which made up roughly one-third of last year's draft class, typically goes a long way in setting that market, and 2017 appears to be no different.
For the past week, college football's top outgoing seniors gathered in Mobile, Ala., to prove their worth in front of NFL coaches, general managers, scouts, fans and, of course, draft analysts. The showcase culminated in Saturday's all-star game at Ladd-Peebles Stadium, where the South pulled out a 16-15 victory over the North.
Cal quarterback Davis Webb threw for a game-high 165 yards and a touchdown to earn MVP honors, an award Mississippi State's Dak Prescott took home last year before turning in a Pro Bowl campaign with the Cowboys in his first season.
Jordan Willis, a 6-foot-4, 255-pound defensive end from Kansas State, was named the South's Most Outstanding Player after recording two sacks, two forced fumbles, and a pass breakup in the victory. Kareem Hunt, a 5-foot-10, 208-pound running back from Toledo, had 15 carries for a game-high 118 yards and was named the North's Most Outstanding Player.
But those weren't the only Senior Bowlers to move up the draft boards last week. Here is a look at some players who improved their stock in the eyes of NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock:
LB Haason Reddick, Temple
WR Cooper Kupp, Eastern Washington
CB Rasul Douglas, West Virginia
S Obi Melifonwu, Connecticut
WR Zay Jones, East Carolina
"We've talked about Reddick and Kupp – their weeks were outstanding," said Mayock, a former defensive back at Boston College who played for the Giants from 1982-83. "Rasul Douglas [is a] long, cover, press corner. Melifonwu, if he runs as well at the combine as I think he does, he might have a meteoric rise like Byron Jones, another UConn player. And then … Zay Jones, wow, he's top-100 pick right now, and he's ascending."
TE O.J. Howard, Alabama
TE Evan Engram, Mississippi
CB Tre'Davious White, LSU
CB Damontae Kazee, San Diego State
DT Carlos Watkins, Clemson
"I think [Howard] had two goals: one, show he can separate against man-to-man coverage, and two, confirm that he is a much better blocker than he was a couple years ago. Both goals were accomplished," Mayock said. "In my opinion, he's a top-20 pick and my NFL comp for him will be Greg Olsen. He can block, he can be in-line, and he can beat you downfield vertically."