Senior Bowl 2012: Quinton Coples and Future NFL Stars Who Stole the Show

Josh Martin@@JoshMartinNBANBA Lead WriterJanuary 28, 2012

BLACKSBURG, VIRGINIA - NOVEMBER 17:  Quarterback Logan Thomas #3 of the Virginia Tech Hokies is tackled by defensive end Quinton Coples #90 of the North Carolina Tar Heels at Lane Stadium on November 17, 2011 in Blacksburg, Virginia. (Photo by Geoff Burke/Getty Images)
Geoff Burke/Getty Images

After a week of intense, make-or-break practices down in Mobile, Alabama, college football's four-year stars finally had the opportunity to strut their stuff in front of a national audience at the 2012 Senior Bowl on Saturday.

Of course, most participants won't turn out to be stars in the NFL, but these three likely draftees did plenty to impress and improve their respective stock during the game.

 

Quinton Coples

Quinton Coples did plenty during the practices, in front of NFL scouts, to make up for the lack of good film on him and carried that good work into the game. The North Carolina product spent the entire afternoon dominating whomever the North threw at him, be they tackles or guards, and spent plenty of time in the opposing backfield.

Coples wound up with two tackles for a loss, including a five-yard sack, while reaffirming the fact that he is much more than just a big body who likes to chase quarterbacks.

 

Isaiah Pead

CINCINNATI, OH - DECEMBER 03:  Isaiah Pead #23 of the Cincinnati Bearcats kisses the Big East Championship Trophy as he celebrates with fans after the Bearcats defeated the Connecticut Huskies 35-27 to claim their share of the 2011 Big East Championship o
Tyler Barrick/Getty Images

Usually, when you're the Player of the Year in a BCS conference, your draft profile is already rather pronounced heading into scouting events.

But when you're Isaiah Pead, and your success came in the Big East, anonymity is to be expected (at least to some extent).

Pead made sure to announce himself to those who were watching and listening at the Senior Bowl, rushing eight times for 31 yards and piling up another 100 yards on two punt returns.

Those efforts were enough to make the Cincinnati product the MVP of the game and, more importantly, remind NFL talent evaluators that his blinding speed need not be overlooked on account of his slight size.


Joe Adams

ARLINGTON, TX - JANUARY 06:  (L-R) Joe Adams #3 and Greg Childs #85 of the Arkansas Razorbacks celebrate a win against the Kansas State Wildcats during the Cotton Bowl at Cowboys Stadium on January 6, 2012 in Arlington, Texas.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/G
Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

In a conference so often dominated by defensive stars, it's easy to forget that the SEC turns out more than its fair share of offensive skill players.

Joe Adams did his fair share at the Senior Bowl to remind the football populace at-large of that fact. The former Arkansas Razorback led all receivers with eight catches and 133 yards, the longest of which went for 36 yards.

Adams' performance, along with his latent speed and versatility, will make him a valuable receiver and returner in the NFL, though that much would've been just as clear from watching him at Arkansas.