Scouting the Senior Bowl: Top Prospects and Sleepers by Position
Mid-January means we’re thinking about the Senior Bowl and getting excited for a week of elite practices with one-on-one battles and matchups across the board. The Senior Bowl is an unofficial jumping off point for the start of NFL draft season—we feel it too—and for many evaluators it’s a first in person or live look at a player.
The Senior Bowl is great for finding out who a player is outside of their scheme or support staff in college. If you’re nervous about Bo Nix or Michael Penix because of the college scheme they played in or the great receivers surrounding them, this is a chance for a look at those quarterbacks without those factors around them.
The same goes for every position group, where at least one small-school wide receiver, cornerback and/or offensive lineman seems to pop off the field every year.
So who are we watching? Here’s a breakdown of the rosters with one top prospect and one sleeper per position.
Top Prospect: Bo Nix, Oregon
Nix will battle it out with fellow Pac-12 superstar Michael Penix (Washington) for the title of top Senior Bowl quarterback, but right now Nix is ranked higher for us. His accuracy, mobility and arm talent all scream NFL starter at a Derek Carr-like level. And unlike Penix, we don’t hear horror stories about the medical side of things. Nix needs to show good intermediate and downfield placement and timing here. If he does, a late Round 1 grade is possible.