2012 Senior Bowl: Kellen Moore and 7 Players Who Will Impress NFL Teams
As is the case every year, the Senior Bowl will guarantee several prospects first-round selections in the 2012 NFL Draft. Last season, Florida State quarterback Christian Ponder parlayed an MVP performance at the event into a first-round selection by the Minnesota Vikings.
This season there is an abundance of talent vying to make a name for themselves at the Mobile, Alabama based event. The senior laden squads primarily consist of highly competitive kids looking to breakout and have their stocks skyrocket after the week of practices and the actual game.
Boise State star Kellen Moore leads a pool of future gridiron athletes who are looking to make a splash in the eyes of NFL brass. Here are eight players ready to take their talents to the highest level of football.
Joe Adams, Arkansas
The explosive Arkansas wide receiver is a highlight waiting to happen. The 5'10" wide receiver is the most electric prospect you will find at the event.
He displayed that in a first team All-SEC senior season in which he caught 52 balls for 652 yards and three touchdowns. What makes him even more appealing to pro personnel is his big-play ability on special teams.
His four punt returns for touchdowns made him a second team All-American as a kick returner. So far in practices at the Senior Bowl he has shown an ability to catch the ball consistently, making him an appealing draft pick.
Juron Criner, Arizona
The Arizona Wildcat star has what it takes to be a star wideout at the next level. He is blessed with a long and athletic frame, standing 6'4" with long arms. When it comes to wide receivers who are very good at plucking balls out of the air, Criner is one of the best.
He has some teams concerned about a lack of explosiveness out of breaks, but that is hardly something that can keep him from becoming a star.
If he has a solid showing at the 2012 Senior Bowl, he could be off the board by the end of the first round of the draft.
Melvin Ingram, South Carolina
South Carolina defensive star Melvin Ingram has been shining at Senior Bowl practices so far. He has a sturdy frame at 6'2" and 276 pounds, but also displays a rare explosiveness off the ball.
His explosiveness keeps offensive lineman from being able to keep their blocks on him for long. He owns a variety of pass-rush moves that will benefit him at the next level as well.
Where it stands right now, Ingram looks like he will be a solid second-round pick at this point. Look for a big game from the former Gamecock.
Janoris Jenkins, North Alabama
The issue with Janoris Jenkins has never been about his talent. What has plagued the former Florida Gator is his maturity issues. He was involved in a variety of legal troubles in Gainesville, forcing the Gators to dismiss the troubled star.
However, his play at Senior Bowl practices is starting to turn his fortunes around. He has blazing speed in the 40 yard dash at 4.36 second, and he sticks like glue to offensive players.
He was always been viewed as a first-round talent at the University of Florida, and that label still seems to stick. However, due to his baggage, he might be waiting until the second round until his name is called.
Kellen Moore, Boise State
The knock on Kellen Moore has always been about his inability to throw the deep ball. While he still hasn't showed that ability thus far in practices, he still has looked solid.
The way I look at it, he is a game player. The kid is a winner and will continue to be so. His 6'0" height is another red flag for the Boise State star, but there's no denying the mind boggling numbers he put up this year, regardless of the competition.
He threw for 3,800 yards while piling up 43 touchdowns and only nine interceptions. He is very efficient throwing the short ball and consistently hits his targets when they are in stride.
Mike Adams, Ohio State
The first thing you notice about the Ohio State Buckeye star is his impressive frame, standing 6'8" and weighing in at 320 pounds. He has done a very good job this week with using his very long arms to control blocks.
He is receiving rave reviews among the scouts in attendance. He already was being touted as a first-round selection before Senior Bowl practices, but could see his stock continue to rise throughout the week leading up to the game.
Scouts are saying that if he can put on some additional weight to his frame, he could find himself very high on draft boards.
George Iloka, Boise State
The Boise State senior is using a very consistent week at Senior Bowl practices to help his draft stock rise considerably. The 6'3" senior has good size for the safety position, and he showed good ball-tracking skills when he intercepted a pass by Michigan State signal caller Kirk Cousins this week.
He has been playing both free safety and strong safety in practices and has been oozing confidence on the field. It is shaping up to be a nice week for Boise State players at the 2012 Senior Bowl, and George Iloka is at the forefront.
Courtney Upshaw, Alabama
Courtney Upshaw, a 6'2" senior from Alabama, is a gem of a prospect for the 2012 NFL Draft. While his position at Alabama was linebacker, he is using this week to showcase the skills he has at the defensive end position.
He has the reputation of being a powerful player and has demonstrated an ability to use his hands so far. He is a phenomenal athlete, and if teams are drafting based on pedigree, he will be just fine on draft day.
Don't forget the litany of awards he won this past season, including defensive MVP of the national championship game against LSU, as well as a second team Associated Press All-American selection.