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January 23, 2008

Senior Bowl - Wednesday North Practice

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Scott Wright

President, NFL Draft Countdown

On Monday the North started the week off slow in just shells but they did their best to make up for it with this session, which was extremely physical. In fact, it seems as though players are dropping like flies and after seeing Kentwan Balmer and Beau Bell go down yesterday we had four more injuries today. This was probably the best practice of the week so far, with a number of strong, standout performances and a lot of good situations to evaluate the prospects.

Here are my impressions.

" Eastern Michigan defensive lineman Jason Jones worked at linebacker today and was even pulled aside by Raider defensive coordinator Rob Ryan (along with Shawn Crable) for some personal attention. Jones gave terrific effort but his change of direction skills were questionable and he simply didn't look very natural in either the drills or the live action reps. Needless to say in my opinion he will not be a linebacker at the next level, regardless of whether it's a 3-4 or 4-3 scheme.

" Cal wideout Lavelle Hawkins continues to be one of the most impressive players at this game, on either team and at any position. He just makes big play after big play, great catch after great catch and has looked amazing. At one point he caught a nice deep ball and someone said "That was on Tracy Porter", to which I replied I don't think it matters who is covering him at this point. He also had a highlight reel catch on the sidelines that has to be one of the top plays of the week. I was skeptical about Hawkins coming in but now I'm sold.

" USC linebacker Keith Rivers looks very smooth in everything he does. In particular today I was impressed with how fluid he was in coverage drills and how easily he flipped his hips.

" I've been waiting all week for one of the quarterbacks to step up and really separate himself from the pack and it finally happened today. Delaware's Joe Flacco looked like a totally different player, showcasing his strong arm and looking extremely comfortable in the pocket. Truth be told Flacco's performance today was probably the best I have seen by a quarterback yet this week. After wearing a plain white helmet the first couple of days his signature Blue Hen lid finally arrived today and it brought the best out in him.

" Michigan quarterback Chad Henne also looked sharp today, throwing accurate BB's. On the flip-side of the coin USC's John David Booty really struggled with his accuracy, which is surprising since that was the area where he was so impressive on Monday. Booty's throws also looked like they required some exertion, especially compared to Flacco who made it look effortless. None of these signal callers have embarrased themselves but for the week as a whole I'd rank the North guys as follows: 1) Henne, 2) Flacco 3) Booty.

" Colorado outside linebacker Jordon Dizon stood out at times, displaying very quick feet and a burst to close. He'll need to be in the right scheme to succeed at the pro level but I could see him potentially being drafted a little earlier than anticipated.

" Owen Schmitt of West Virginia and Shawn Crable of Michigan and Jamar Adams of Michiigan all went down with injuries today. Schmitt's looked to be the worst.

" California running back Just Forsett had another good day. He's real shifty and seems to be the North's top runner, especially with East Carolina's Chris Johnson M.I.A.

" Notre Dame defensive tackle Trevor Laws continued to make his presence felt in 11-on-11's, penetrating through the line and making a nice tackle for a loss.

" Terrell Thomas of USC saw extensive action at safety.

" Purdue wideout Dorien Bryant looked very quick and ran good routes.

" Kansas St. receiver Jordy Nelson made a couple of nice catches in traffic but still seems to be just a step slower than everyone else. I will be shocked if he runs under a 4.5 forty based on what I've seen this week.

" Notre Dame safety Tom Zbikowski looked smooth in coverage and did a nice job on the tight ends. Maybe he isn't as one-dimensional as everyone thinks...

" Things finally took a turn for the better for Oklahoma St. wide receiver Adarius Bowman. After battling a terrible case of the dropsies the first couple of practices he did a nice job today. He has a lot of ground to make up though after such a disastrous start though.

" Missouri tight end Martin Rucker looked good at point of attack and has made big strides as a blocker since the beginning of the week.

" Boston College offensive tackle Gosder Cherilus has been aggressive and almost nasty.

" Due to injuries USC tight end Fred Davis saw some action at fullback due to the injury to Owen Schmitt but it at least raises the possibility of him maybe being a H-Back at the next level, especially considering his lack of height.

For me the story of the day was Joe Flacco just because it was nice to finally see one of the signal callers stand out but Lavelle Hawkins was probably the most impressive player overall. While a physical practice is usually a good thing all of the injuries the past two days are a little disturbing and something you never want to see in an All-Star game. Everything considered it was a great day of practice, probably the best yet for this squad, and the North team definitely has some players who appear to be just hitting their stride, which bodes well for the remainder of the week.

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its good that some of the QB's are stepping up. He also said that Colt Brennan looked good yesterday. I had no idea that Brennan has had exprience with the WCO before. He apparently ran it in high school. He learned it there with Carson Palmer and Matt Lienart ahead of him (that is a DEEP QB depth chart).

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Colt Brennan crumbles under "pressure". Real PRESSURE - like the kind he faced in the Sugar Bowl, which is the same kind he will see every week in the NFL. Colt Brennan is not NFL Quality - he is like David Carr to me.

You could just see it in his eyes when he played Georgia. He looked scared. He even cried.

No thanks. None of the QBs in the draft are worth a crap. I'd rather trade for one this season.

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Well, I can't remember in years past where I had the same 2 frist picks in my Mock in April that I had im my first Mock . But I really think this may be the first year , I'm pretty sure it will be hard for me to change out my top two picks , Ellis and Flacco who have been two of the best showings this week. Ellis is known as the player that has stood out more than any player period . And Flacco who's ratings slide down a round in the two weeks prior to the Senior bowl week , now I'm sure he has moved back up to the 2nd round and hopfully not into the bottom of the 1st .

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chris30277 (1/24/2008)
its good that some of the QB's are stepping up. He also said that Colt Brennan looked good yesterday. I had no idea that Brennan has had exprience with the WCO before. He apparently ran it in high school. He learned it there with Carson Palmer and Matt Lienart ahead of him (that is a DEEP QB depth chart).

Colt looked ok yesterday. i saw it for myself. he doesnt even know how to drop back. i would take flacco, henne, or booty before colt.

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bossFALCON (1/24/2008)
chris30277 (1/24/2008)
its good that some of the QB's are stepping up. He also said that Colt Brennan looked good yesterday. I had no idea that Brennan has had exprience with the WCO before. He apparently ran it in high school. He learned it there with Carson Palmer and Matt Lienart ahead of him (that is a DEEP QB depth chart).

Colt looked ok yesterday. i saw it for myself. he doesnt even know how to drop back. i would take flacco, henne, or booty before colt.

I thik Colt is a good kid , and will make a good Coach , but as for our QB , Sorry but no way would I draft him.

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Draftnut57 (1/24/2008)
bossFALCON (1/24/2008)
chris30277 (1/24/2008)
its good that some of the QB's are stepping up. He also said that Colt Brennan looked good yesterday. I had no idea that Brennan has had exprience with the WCO before. He apparently ran it in high school. He learned it there with Carson Palmer and Matt Lienart ahead of him (that is a DEEP QB depth chart).

Colt looked ok yesterday. i saw it for myself. he doesnt even know how to drop back. i would take flacco, henne, or booty before colt.

I thik Colt is a good kid , and will make a good Coach , but as for our QB , Sorry but no way would I draft him.

yea not to mention he is 6'2 and 185 pounds. i dont like that match up against 6'+ 300+ pound d-lineman.

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g-dawg (1/24/2008)
January 23, 2008

Senior Bowl - Wednesday North Practice

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Scott Wright

President, NFL Draft Countdown

On Monday the North started the week off slow in just shells but they did their best to make up for it with this session, which was extremely physical. In fact, it seems as though players are dropping like flies and after seeing Kentwan Balmer and Beau Bell go down yesterday we had four more injuries today. This was probably the best practice of the week so far, with a number of strong, standout performances and a lot of good situations to evaluate the prospects.

Here are my impressions.

" Eastern Michigan defensive lineman Jason Jones worked at linebacker today and was even pulled aside by Raider defensive coordinator Rob Ryan (along with Shawn Crable) for some personal attention. Jones gave terrific effort but his change of direction skills were questionable and he simply didn't look very natural in either the drills or the live action reps. Needless to say in my opinion he will not be a linebacker at the next level, regardless of whether it's a 3-4 or 4-3 scheme.

" Cal wideout Lavelle Hawkins continues to be one of the most impressive players at this game, on either team and at any position. He just makes big play after big play, great catch after great catch and has looked amazing. At one point he caught a nice deep ball and someone said "That was on Tracy Porter", to which I replied I don't think it matters who is covering him at this point. He also had a highlight reel catch on the sidelines that has to be one of the top plays of the week. I was skeptical about Hawkins coming in but now I'm sold.

" USC linebacker Keith Rivers looks very smooth in everything he does. In particular today I was impressed with how fluid he was in coverage drills and how easily he flipped his hips.

" I've been waiting all week for one of the quarterbacks to step up and really separate himself from the pack and it finally happened today. Delaware's Joe Flacco looked like a totally different player, showcasing his strong arm and looking extremely comfortable in the pocket. Truth be told Flacco's performance today was probably the best I have seen by a quarterback yet this week. After wearing a plain white helmet the first couple of days his signature Blue Hen lid finally arrived today and it brought the best out in him.

" Michigan quarterback Chad Henne also looked sharp today, throwing accurate BB's. On the flip-side of the coin USC's John David Booty really struggled with his accuracy, which is surprising since that was the area where he was so impressive on Monday. Booty's throws also looked like they required some exertion, especially compared to Flacco who made it look effortless. None of these signal callers have embarrased themselves but for the week as a whole I'd rank the North guys as follows: 1) Henne, 2) Flacco 3) Booty.

" Colorado outside linebacker Jordon Dizon stood out at times, displaying very quick feet and a burst to close. He'll need to be in the right scheme to succeed at the pro level but I could see him potentially being drafted a little earlier than anticipated.

" Owen Schmitt of West Virginia and Shawn Crable of Michigan and Jamar Adams of Michiigan all went down with injuries today. Schmitt's looked to be the worst.

" California running back Just Forsett had another good day. He's real shifty and seems to be the North's top runner, especially with East Carolina's Chris Johnson M.I.A.

" Notre Dame defensive tackle Trevor Laws continued to make his presence felt in 11-on-11's, penetrating through the line and making a nice tackle for a loss.

" Terrell Thomas of USC saw extensive action at safety.

" Purdue wideout Dorien Bryant looked very quick and ran good routes.

" Kansas St. receiver Jordy Nelson made a couple of nice catches in traffic but still seems to be just a step slower than everyone else. I will be shocked if he runs under a 4.5 forty based on what I've seen this week.

" Notre Dame safety Tom Zbikowski looked smooth in coverage and did a nice job on the tight ends. Maybe he isn't as one-dimensional as everyone thinks...

" Things finally took a turn for the better for Oklahoma St. wide receiver Adarius Bowman. After battling a terrible case of the dropsies the first couple of practices he did a nice job today. He has a lot of ground to make up though after such a disastrous start though.

" Missouri tight end Martin Rucker looked good at point of attack and has made big strides as a blocker since the beginning of the week.

" Boston College offensive tackle Gosder Cherilus has been aggressive and almost nasty.

" Due to injuries USC tight end Fred Davis saw some action at fullback due to the injury to Owen Schmitt but it at least raises the possibility of him maybe being a H-Back at the next level, especially considering his lack of height.

For me the story of the day was Joe Flacco just because it was nice to finally see one of the signal callers stand out but Lavelle Hawkins was probably the most impressive player overall. While a physical practice is usually a good thing all of the injuries the past two days are a little disturbing and something you never want to see in an All-Star game. Everything considered it was a great day of practice, probably the best yet for this squad, and the North team definitely has some players who appear to be just hitting their stride, which bodes well for the remainder of the week.

I like your draft. Looks good.

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bossFALCON (1/24/2008)
Draftnut57 (1/24/2008)
bossFALCON (1/24/2008)
chris30277 (1/24/2008)
its good that some of the QB's are stepping up. He also said that Colt Brennan looked good yesterday. I had no idea that Brennan has had exprience with the WCO before. He apparently ran it in high school. He learned it there with Carson Palmer and Matt Lienart ahead of him (that is a DEEP QB depth chart).

I like JJ 3 times more than Colt and JJ can be had in the 3rd round I think. But Flacco is the guuy I want most for the pick . But if we don't get Flacco or Henne , then I'd say JJ in the 3rd.

Colt looked ok yesterday. i saw it for myself. he doesnt even know how to drop back. i would take flacco, henne, or booty before colt.

I thik Colt is a good kid , and will make a good Coach , but as for our QB , Sorry but no way would I draft him.

yea not to mention he is 6'2 and 185 pounds. i dont like that match up against 6'+ 300+ pound d-lineman.

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bossFALCON (1/24/2008)
chris30277 (1/24/2008)
its good that some of the QB's are stepping up. He also said that Colt Brennan looked good yesterday. I had no idea that Brennan has had exprience with the WCO before. He apparently ran it in high school. He learned it there with Carson Palmer and Matt Lienart ahead of him (that is a DEEP QB depth chart).

Colt looked ok yesterday. i saw it for myself. he doesnt even know how to drop back. i would take flacco, henne, or booty before colt.

I agree with you on Colt. Flacco is better. I liked your fisrt draft.

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Jedi-Falcon (1/24/2008)
Colt Brennan crumbles under "pressure". Real PRESSURE - like the kind he faced in the Sugar Bowl, which is the same kind he will see every week in the NFL. Colt Brennan is not NFL Quality - he is like David Carr to me.

You could just see it in his eyes when he played Georgia. He looked scared. He even cried.

No thanks. None of the QBs in the draft are worth a crap. I'd rather trade for one this season.

If you watched the Sugar Bowl you'd know that his OL was badly overmatched against Georgia's DL. No NFL team will get pressure like Georgia did against Hawaii. I've never seen anything like it. Colt was getting hit before he could even get the ball in his hands.

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bluedevilx34 (1/24/2008)
Flacco's stock is going to soar and he'll wind up in the first round, and the Bears will do anything it takes to get him, IMO. I hope we get a shot at him, I've coveted a tall, rocket-armed pocket QB for a while now.[/quote

agreed.....that's everyone's dream. Tall, rocket arm, quick release, fairly athletic, intelligent(accounting major).

Other than the fact that Flacco Falco played at a small school, it would be obvious to all that he is the best QB prospect - better than Matt Ryan, better than Brian Brohm. I know I am going to get flamed for that statement but I think over time I will be proved right.

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