Senior Bowl 2014: Roster, Top Prospects for College All-Star Game

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJanuary 21, 2014

Jan 20, 2014; Fairhope, AL, USA; South Squad quarterback David Fales of San Jose State (12) , quarterback Derek Carr of Fresno State (4) and quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo of Eastern Illinois (10) run through drills during practice at Fairhope Municipal Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports
John David Mercer-USA TODAY Spor

Unless you are a fan of the Seattle Seahawks or Denver Broncos, it is time to start looking toward the 2014 NFL draft. Fortunately, some of the best prospects will be on display at this year's Senior Bowl.

This All-Star showcase gives NFL teams and scouts a chance to see top players in a game against elite competition. Of course, it also presents an opportunity to see how these young men practice and prepare for games throughout the week.    

Those prospects that do well can often jump from relative obscurity to a first- or second-round pick with a strong showing.

Here is a full look at the rosters for each team as well as the top players who will be selected early in the NFL draft in May.

Senior Bowl—South Roster
NameSchoolPosition
Derek CarrFresno StateQB
Jimmy GaroppoloEastern IllinoisQB
David FalesSan Jose StateQB
Antonio AndrewsWestern KentuckyRB
Jerick McKinnonGeorgia SouthernRB
Lorenzo TaliaferroCoastal CarolinaRB
Jay ProschAuburnFB
Mike DavisTexasWR
Ryan Grant,TulaneWR
Cody HoffmanBYUWR
Jordan MatthewsVanderbiltWR
Solomon PattonFloridaWR
Kevin NorwoodAlabamaWR
Jalen SaundersOklahomaWR
Marcel JensenFresno StateTE
Arthur LynchGeorgiaTE
Bryan StorkFlorida StateOL
Travis SwansonArkansasOL
Gabe IkardOklahomaOL
Joel Bitonio NevadaOL
Jon HalapioFloridaOL
Gabe JacksonMississippi StateOL
Wesley JohnsonVanderbiltOL
Ja'Wuan JamesTennesseeOL
Morgan MosesVirginiaOL
Billy TurnerNorth Dakota StateOL
Deandre ColemanCaliforniaDL
Justin EllisLouisiana TechDL
Daniel McCullersTennesseeDL
Caraun ReidPrincetonDL
Will SuttonArizona StateDL
Dee FordAuburnDL
Chris SmithArkansasDL
Ed StinsonAlabamaDL
Brent UrbanVirginiaDL
Lamin BarrowLSULB
Christian JonesFlorida StateLB
Jeremiah AttaochuGeorgia TechLB
Adrian HubbardAlabamaLB
Telvin SmithFlorida StateLB
Jordan TrippMontanaLB
Kyle Van NoyBYULB
Walt AikensLibertyDB
Aaron ColvinOklahomaDB
Chris DavisAuburnDB
Keith McGillUtahDB
Jaylen WatkinsFloridaDB
Lavelle WestbrooksGeorgia SouthernDB
Terrence BrooksFlorida StateDB
Jemea ThomasGeorgia TechDB
Kenny LadlerVanderbiltDB
Craig LostonLSUDB
Marcus HeitKansas StateLS
Cody MandellAlabamaP
Cody ParkeyAuburnK
via SeniorBowl.com
Senior Bowl—North Roster
NameSchoolPosition
Tajh BoydClemsonQB
Stephen MorrisMiamiQB
Logan ThomasVirginia TechQB
Charles SimsWest VirginiaRB
James WhiteWisconsinRB
Ryan HewittStanfordFB
Jared Abbrederis, WisconsinWR
Michael CampanaroWake ForestWR
Kain ColterNorthwesternWR
Shaquelle EvansUCLAWR
Robert HerronWyomingWR
Josh HuffOregonWR
Jeff JanisSaginaw Valley St.WR
C.J. FiedorowiczIowaTE
Jacob PedersenWisconsinTE
Tyler LarsenUtah StateOL
Weston RichburgColorado StateOL
Kadeem EdwardsTennessee St.OL
Brandon LinderMiamiOL
Cyril RichardsonBaylorOL
Michael SchofieldMichiganOL
Seantrel HendersonMiamiOL
Zack MartinNotre DameOL
Jack MewhortOhio StateOL
Brandon ThomasClemsonOL
Aaron DonaldPittsburghDL
Ra'Shede HagemanMinnesotaDL
DaQuan JonesPenn StateDL
Shamar StephenConnecticutDL
Will ClarkeWest VirginiaDL
James GayleVirginia TechDL
Taylor HartOregonDL
Kareem MartinNorth CarolinaDL
Trent MurphyStanfordDL
Chris BorlandWisconsinLB
Jordan ZumwaltUCLALB
Jonathan BrownIllinoisLB
Christian KirkseyIowaLB
Michael SamMissouriLB
Marcus SmithLouisvilleLB
Pierre DesirLindenwoodDB
Stanley Jean-BaptisteNebraskaDB
Nevin LawsonUtah StateDB
Marqueston Huff WyomingDB
Deone BucannonWashington StateDB
Ahmad DixonBaylorDB
Dontae JohnsonNorth Carolina StateDB
Dez Southward WisconsinDB
Jimmie WardNorthern IllinoisDB
Chris BoswellRiceK
Tyler OttHarvardLS
Kirby Van Der KampIowa StateP
via SeniorBowl.com

 

Top Prospects

Derek Carr, QB, Fresno State

SAN JOSE, CA - NOVEMBER 29:  Quarterback Derek Carr #4 of the Fresno State Bulldogs picks up 12 yards and a first down as he holds on to the ball against the San Jose State Spartans in the first quarter on November 29, 2013 at Spartan Stadium in San Jose,
Brian Bahr/Getty Images

During the regular season, Derek Carr was the most productive quarterback in college football. However, the question remains whether he can get it done in the NFL.

The Fresno State quarterback led all of FBS with 5,082 passing yards and 50 touchdowns, yet this was mostly against inferior competition. He also struggled in the bowl game against USC.

Additionally, Carr has to show he can play in a pro-style offense after running the spread offense the past couple of years. According to Mark Inabinett of AL.com, Carr has made proving himself in this area a goal for the week:

Number one is just show that I can play under center, to show that I've been doing that since I was 3 and that I've only been in the shotgun for two years. Of course, that has to be in everybody's head and rightfully so. I would think the same thing.

Still, there is little denying Carr's pure talent as a passer. Andrew Garda of FootballGuys.com gave his assessment:

The brother of former No. 1 overall pick David Carr has the ability to be a star in the NFL, but this week will help show if he can get to that point. 

 

Aaron Donald, DT, Pittsburgh

Keith Srakocic/Associated Press

There is often a big divide between college stars and legitimate NFL prospects. Aaron Donald was as dominant as they come this year, sweeping the award shows while being named the best defensive player in the country by virtually any measure. 

He finished with 11 sacks as an interior lineman, something that is not easy to do. Whenever he did not bring the quarterback down, he was almost always in the backfield disrupting the offensive play.

However, there are some that believe a lack of size will keep him out of the first round. According to CBS Sports, he is the fourth-best defensive tackle available and a likely second-round pick.

This might change based on his recent play at Senior Bowl practices. Bleacher Report's Matt Miller discussed Donald's impressive performance on Day 1:

Donald might not be able to clog the middle of the field like a prototypical 3-4 tackle, but he can get through an offensive line with ease. This will help him be successful as a professional, regardless of what he weighs. 

 

Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt

Over the past two seasons, Jordan Matthews has torn apart SEC defenses to the tune of 2,800 receiving yards for 15 touchdowns on 206 catches. He has solid size at 6'3" and good enough hands to be a reliable target for any quarterback in the NFL.

However, he has one more skill that has been on display so far at the Senior Bowl: work ethic.

According to Jonathan Jones of the Charlotte Observer, Matthews asked for game tape of all the opposing quarterbacks to help him prepare for the contest. This is not a common practice for an All-Star game at any level, but it just goes to show that he is willing to put the extra time in to prepare.

Meanwhile, Miller also caught him doing extra work on the field:

Matthews is a tremendous talent who will get far on his athletic abilities alone. Adding in this work ethic and the fact that he is a student of the game shows that he is worth a first-round pick.

 

Kyle Van Noy, DE, BYU

Cathleen Allison/Associated Press

In the age of specialization, Kyle Van Noy is a rare outside linebacker that can truly do it all. After finishing with 13 sacks in his junior season, the BYU product spent this year perfecting his ability in coverage.

This skill was on full display at Senior Bowl practices and he drew rave reviews. Scott Bischoff of New Era Scouting and Eric Galko of Optimum Scouting were two of many who liked what they saw in this area:

Van Noy has the size and quickness to be a force off the edge against both the pass and run, but his ability to stay on the field for all three downs is what truly separates him.

If he can continue to impress scouts and have a strong performance at the Senior Bowl, it would not be surprising to see him sneak into the first round at the NFL draft.

 

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