2019 Senior Bowl: Thursday Practice Report: South Team
This is Charlie Campbell's Thursday 2019 Senior Bowl Practice Report for the South Team. Charlie is reporting live from Mobile, Ala., and he'll describe what he sees at practice and whom certain prospects talk to all week.
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By Charlie Campbell - @draftcampbell
The third practice of the South team in the Senior Bowl was held in Mobile, Ala. in Ladd-Peebles Stadium. The players practicing in shells: helmets, shoulder pads, and shorts. The North team was coached by the Oakland Raiders coaching staff.
There were two players who continued their Senior Bowl trend of raising and hurting their draft stock for the South team. Mississippi State edge rusher Josh Sweat finished off his excellent week with a superb practice Thursday. Aside from performing well in the one-on-ones all week, Sweat was excellent in the team scrimmage. He ate up the tackles with his speed, length and athleticism. He had a couple of sacks using speed around the corner to get to Will Grier and then finished off the scrimmage with what could have been a strip-sack if the players were hitting the quarterbacks. Sweat had three good practices to solidify his standing on the opening night of the draft and improve his potential for going higher.
The player who continued to hurt himself was Will Grier. The West Virginia quarterback really struggled on Thursday. Even in the install period and position drills with no defense, Grier had numerous passes off the mark to fall in complete. Grier showed some arm strength limitations all week, and those could be seen again on Thursday. While some in the media have hyped him as a first-round pick, team sources were very down on his performance in Mobile, and he looks like a future backup quarterback in the NFL.
Grier's teammate wide receiver Gary Jennings had a strong week of practice. He showed some speed to get vertical and challenge secondaries in the deep part of the field. On Thursday, he was open for what should have a long touchdown, but the pass was off the mark. Jennings has been somewhat of a sleeper in the draft process, but he could be a valuable mid-round pick with vertical speed for the next level.
South Carolina wide receiver Deebo Samuel finished off his week of practice with an excellent showing on Thursday. Samuel was superb in the one-on-ones and in the red zone scrimmage. He used his quickness and ran some good routes to get separation. In the red zone seven-on-seven, he burned double coverage to on a corner post for a touchdown. He ran by defenders to get open in the back of the end zone on a crossing route as well.
Samuel could be a solid No. 2 or 3 receiver in the NFL. He could work out of the slot or line up on the outside. With his quickness and athleticism, Samuel is tough to cover. He has a running back build which hurts him some, but does bring added value with special teams returning skills. Samuel could be a good value on the second day of the 2019 NFL Draft.
Wyoming edge rusher Carl Granderson had a strong start to the week on Tuesday and added another quality showing on Thursday. He used his speed and athleticism to get some wins in the pass rush, including an impressive sack in the team scrimmage where he flew around the corner and was on the quarterback quickly. Granderson used the Senior Bowl opportunity to his advantage as he showed that he could be effective against the better competition. Granderson could make sense for a 3-4 team looking for an outside linebacker on Day 2 of the 2019 NFL Draft.
Temple cornerback Rock Ya-Sin had a number of team sources complimenting his play this week. Ya-Sin (5-11, 198) plays bigger than his listed numbers, as he is a physical cornerback who fights receivers. He also showed some nice quickness and athleticism to run routes with receivers. Ya-Sin elevated himself to having second-day potential after his strong week in Mobile.
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