The Senior Bowl will take place on Saturday in Mobile, Alabama. The game will kickoff at 4 p.m. ET on NFL Network and showcase some of the most talented players in college football. This game is similar to the East-West Shrine Game in practice as prospects spend the week working out and practicing in front of scouts before playing in the all-star game. The difference is that the rosters feature much more prominent talent than its predecessor.
The game is essentially a primer for the NFL Combine in February and allows for players to increase or decrease their stock in NFL scouts' eyes. There are prospects that can go on anywhere from the Top 10 to priority free agents in this game, so there is really a treasure trove of talent to evaluate. Much like the Shrine Game, the Senior Bowl also features a pack of small school talents that will be revealed to an national audience for the first time.
Josh Collacchi and I took at stab at 10 players we thought would be possible Eagles targets in this game. Below are the guys we think you should look out for on Saturday:
DE/OLB Jeremiah Attaochu, Georgia Tech (6'3" 252 lbs) South Team
One of the players who has "risen" across draft boards of late, and a very good pass rusher. With Vic Beasley going back to school, Attaochu has the opportunity to be one of the better pass rushers in the draft. Should he have a good week in Mobile, that will just solidify things.
NT Daniel McCullers, Tennessee (6'8" 360 lbs) South Team
McCullers is 6-foot-8 and 360 pounds. At times he struggles to be anything but a big body, but we all heard Chip talk about how he loves size. McCullers may be a pick later in the draft, and if someone can get him going, he is a mammoth of a human being who is tough to get out of the way.
S Ahmad Dixon, Baylor (6'0" 205 lbs) North Team
Dixon can hit with the best of them, but constantly bites on double moves, and is can be exploited by a good route runner. This week will be big for him to see if he still has those issues. The Eagles need a safety (or two) and this may be one target for them in the middle rounds.
S Jimmie Ward, Northern Illinois (5'11" 191 lbs) North Team
Speaking of safeties, Jimmie Ward is an interesting name that has been floating around lately. I have not seen much of his tape, and am intrigued to watch him next week. He has six interceptions and over 75 tackles, but want to see it with my own eyes, as all of us do.
WR Jordan Matthews, Vanderbilt (6'3" 209 lbs) South Team
Matthews is likely to be one of the top five wide receivers picked, and from what I have seen on tape, the kid can do it all. I cannot wait to see him live, and see just how good he is. Having some talented quarterbacks throwing to him will be a pleasure to watch.
QB David Fales, San Jose State (6'1" 220 lbs) South Team
He is not who I think is the best quarterback in the draft, but he is easily my favorite passing prospect. Fales has a solid arm and makes great decisions. He is mobile and accurate, but at times holds onto the ball a bit too long. He trusts his wide receivers, despite playing for a pretty bad team and can definitely take a hit. He is shorter than Nick Foles, but their games are pretty similar, with the exception that Fales is significantly more athletic. He could be a great backup for Foles and an eventual starter for the Eagles.
WR Jalen Saunders, Oklahoma (5'9" 164 lbs) South Team
We all want a larger wide receiver on the outside, but what about a speedster in the slot? Saunders is an absolute burner with DeSean Jackson-like ability to score from anywhere on the field. He is super athletic and has Brandon Boykin like "hops." He is not afraid to go across the middle and is a nightmare matchup for any safety or linebacker.
TE CJ Fiedorowicz, Iowa (6'6" 262 lbs) North Team
The Eagles should always be looking for weapons in the redzone. Fiedorowicz is an awesome blocker and has pretty good hands. At 6-foot-7, Fiedorowicz has serious size and could have a big impact on scoring for whatever team takes him in May.
OT Billy Turner, North Dakota St. (6'5" 316 lbs) South Team
I will give all the credit to our pal Dan Klausner on this one. Klausner introduced me to the joys of watching this small school gem, who is already polished and is downright dominant at the low levels of college football. He is a solid pulling tackle and can get to the second level with easy. He is way more NFL-ready than Terron Armstead was last year. This game could be his coming out party. He could be the successor to Jason Peters in 2015.
DE/OLB Dee Ford, Auburn (6'2" 243 lbs) South Team
A big school prospect that shows up in big games, Ford is solid bet for a pass rusher. He got two sacks on Jameis Winston and about another six or so pressures in the BCS National Championship game. If the Eagles go for a wide receiver or safety in the first round, Ford could be a huge target in the second round. With Vic Beasley headed back to school, Ford could somehow play himself into the first round with a good performance and a strong workout at the Combine. He will likely get up to 255-260 pounds by training camp and with his frame that should not be hard.