The 2015 Senior Bowl — being played at 4 p.m. today at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Ala. — features some of the best talent college football has to offer.
With every player on both the North and South rosters looking to make an impression on NFL scouts, team personnel and coaches, there's always a heightened sense of competition in the Senior Bowl practices leading up to the game.
This year's game features a great deal of depth in the trenches, both on the offensive and defensive lines. As he watched a practice session this week, NFL Media draft expert Mike Mayock gave his quick takes on the offensive and defensive linemen that have stood out to him in this year's Senior Bowl class.
On defensive tackle Danny Shelton (Washington):
"Yeah, we just saw the Haloti Ngata local light, Danny Shelton – with numbers ripped off. He might be the best player in this game and this is a drill where the defense can dominate. [It's a] one-on-one drill, it's pass protection. There's no place to hide. He has that old Reggie White, Howie Long pump-pump move."
On guard Laken Tomlinson (Duke):
"Laken Tomlinson, the guard from Duke. I think I have a higher grade on him than most the people I've seen. He's a big, square, tough guy. [He's a] road grater in the run game, but I think he's a better pass protector. This might be a Top 10 pick at the end of the day. Tomlinson is having a good day, folks. You see at the end of the play when the defender runs toward the quarterback, ball's gone."
On tackle T.J. Clemmings (Pittsburgh):
"This is left tackle, T.J. Clemmings. He played two years of high school football, had basketball scholarship offers – Seton Hall and Providence I believe. I believe at the end of the day, if things play out, he can be a Top 10 pick. His physical traits are all left tackle. He's got beautiful feet, he's a dancing bear, and he's a guy that's pass protection first. He just needs to clean up technique and get stronger in his core areas. Clemmings, a little bit of reacher, but he did a great job that time. He's got the build of a Tyron Smith from the Cowboys and he's got the feet."
On guard Robert Myers (Tennessee State):"That's the Division-II player, Myers from Tennessee State who's got some ability, but looked really slow trying to power step, meaning that inside step, that inside move taking an inside step driving down across the line of scrimmage."
On tackle Rob Havenstein (Wisconsin):
"Havenstein from Wisconsin at 6-feet, 8-inches against [linebacker Zack] Hodges. They don't have 6-feet, 8-inches in the Ivy League. Hodges is not used to that."
On tackle Jamil Douglas (Arizona State):"Douglas played a lot of tackle at Arizona State, but I think his future is inside at guard. He'll be really good. A lot of these guys are tackles in college who are going to have to move inside. He's one of them."
On tackle Donovan Smith (Penn State):"Not many people saw him coming out, but understand, he's almost 6-feet, 6-inches, 341 pounds, he's got long arms. This kid can be a better football player than I think people understand. A lot of us got on him late because we did not expect him to come out."
The North and the South teams continued practices for a third day for the 2015 Senior Bowl Thursday, Jan. 22, 2015, at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile, Ala.
On defensive tackle Louis Trinca-Pasat (Iowa): **"Trinca-Pasat can get up field every now and again, but he's not quite as stout against the run. He's a movement guy. He gets stoned at the point unless he's on the move."
On tackle Ali Marpet (Hobart):"[Ali Marpet's] a left tackle at Hobart but I think he's a center. The thing that will help Ali Marpet is if he can play all three interior positions. Really smart kid obviously, but he needs to get on a practice squad and get bigger and stronger."
On defensive end Henry Anderson (Stanford):"Henry Anderson has length. He's so long. He could play several different positions. He's 6-feet, 6-inches, 287 pounds. He could line up, up and down the defensive line of scrimmage. That's what I saw from [Henry] Anderson all year long – thee quickness and length to win."
On defensive end Nate Orchard (Utah):"Nate Orchard is an intriguing prospect who's long. He converts speed to power and that's what he did to Havenstein right there, got up under him and jacked him. You could only hope that every tackle will go straight up like that and just rock him back to the quarterback."