- With James Carpenter slated to hit the open market in two months and Russell Okung up for free agency in 2016, there’s been a long held belief the Seattle Seahawks will make offensive line a priority in April’s draft. Its been passed around the internet the team likes Colorado State’s Tyler Sambrailo, something I’ve known since October and was confirmed earlier this week. I’ve also been alerted Terry Poole of San Diego State is another tackle the team likes. Poole started slowly at Shrine practice in St Petersburg but by Thursday he was one of the better blockers on the field.
- Earlier this week I stated the New York Giants have taken a liking to Lynden Trail of Norfolk State. Later that day I was told general manager Jerry Reese was making calls inquiring about Trail during the early evening hours. Dimensions wise Trail compares to Jason Pierre-Paul.
- Wednesday evening I spoke at length with Ali Marpet of Hobart College. Marpet, who went to high school in Hastings, New York, (about 20 minutes from my house) told me he was 230-pounds as a senior and few college teams recruited his school, hence the reason he ended up at Hobart. Marpet is not a physically impressive specimen but his technique on the field is almost flawless. He explained the offensive coordinator at Hobart is also the teams offensive line coach and preaches technique and fundamentals. Marpet told me every team in the league expect the Cincinnati Bengals passed through the Hobart campus to scout him.
- To follow up on my tweet from Thursday morning, offensive lineman Gregory Mancz had surgery this week to repair a torn labrum suffered during Shrine Game practices. While he won’t be able to participate in the combine, the timing of the surgery means the Toledo senior will be on target for full recovery by training camp this year. The play occurred during Tuesday’s practice and it was immediately evident Mancz had suffered some type of injury.
- Finally, this week marked the 15th year I’ve attended every full contact practice at the Senior Bowl. My first year was 2000 and I stood shoulder to shoulder with scouts and general managers watching Chad Pennington battle Chris Redman and Giovanni Carmazzi for the top spot at the quarterback position as well as R. Jay Soward state his case to be a first round selection. Wednesday, traditionally the final day of full contact practice, was always the highlight. Scouts, coaches, general managers and personnel people would stand three deep at Fairhope Stadium and USM Wright field to take in practice. The amount of information available was incredible. Appreciating the importance of the Senior Bowl I was saddened to see how few scouts were in attendance yesterday, the final day of full contact practice. Truth be told the number of scouts, coaches, et al, have been diminishing from Senior Bowl practice the past five years while the amount of media in attendance has swelled. In fact its to the point where the Senior Bowl seems more like a media event rather than a scouting event, and that’s a shame. There are a number of reasons for this; increased television and internet exposure (the latter which I’m guilty of), the non-stop thirst for football and the explosion of the NFL Draft. And while general managers and head coaches can view all the practices on video they are missing out on the one-on-one interaction with those who participate in the Senior Bowl, void of any limit on the number of interviews allowed as well as the amount of time allotted to the interview, which handcuffs them at the combine.
- To expand on my earlier tweet about the Atlanta Falcons liking Shane Ray/DE/Missouri, of course much will depend on the potential hire of Dan Quinn. Sources close to the situation tell me Quinn is a stickler for arm length so Ray’s measurements, hand and arm, could play a big factor.
- Sources here in Mobile tell me Cedric Ogbuehi/T/Texas A&M hurt his knee during the season and the tear he suffered during the teams bowl game was actually the cherry on the whip cream.
- Senior Bowl director Phil Savage came down pretty hard on six players who seemed to lollygag on not accepting invitations to the week. One of the biggest head scratches was Corey Crawford/DE/Clemson who grades as a late round pick and should’ve jumped at the opportunity take part in the Senior Bowl.