Executive Director Phil Savage held his annual “State of the Senior Bowl” address before the party started. In it, he put names of several high profile prospects that declined their invitations, including Alabama DE Jonathan Allen, Clemson QB Deshaun Watson, Clemson WR Mike Williams, and Oklahoma WR Dede Westbrook among others. Well, their lack of attendance certainly has provided opportunities for others.
Day 1 is in the books with both practices concluded and the legendary "Underwear Olympics" completed. Both the North and South were in shells and shorts as expected on the first day of practice. Each team completed their practices inside Ladd-Peebles Stadium. The weigh-ins are always a fun review of which schools fudge their numbers and which do not.
This is just the beginning, folks! Keep on reading for more goodies throughout the week brought to you by the newest addition to the MCM staff, Justin Graver.
From the Twitterverse
I think that's holding. Nice catch by Zay Jones anyway. pic.twitter.com/sCe7peI7rT— Chris Burke (@ChrisBurke_SI) January 24, 2017
RB Kareem Hunt of Toledo having a great practice. Just stoned Hasaan Reddick in pass protection. #SENIORBOWL— Mike Tanier (@MikeTanier) January 24, 2017
South CBs doing a simple drill but Corn Elder stands out with his twitch and quick feet. #seniorbowl— Jeff Risdon (@JeffRisdon) January 24, 2017
Tre'Davious White/DB/LSU displaying good closing speed, reaction time and hands for the interception #SeniorBowl— Draft Analyst (@DraftAnalyst1) January 24, 2017
Mike Mayock breaks down Day 1 practice stars. Three of which I highlighted already in my posts earlier on Monday (hmm, does the great Mike Mayock read my stuff? ...just kidding, folks).
NFL.com has a feature on Day 1 standouts on both sides, regardless of position.
Eric Galko of Optimum Scouting has the Day 1 South Practice Notes. In news that will shock absolutely no one, someone might have told Bama TE OJ Howard that he was playing the Clemson defense as he had a very good Day 1. For all the Hilltoppers fans, WKU alum Forrest Lamp had a great practice. Also, LSU CB Tre'Davious White was balling out as expected.
OS has their Day 1 Practice Notes ready to go. Early reports are that Indiana OG Dan Feeney is putting on a show like former teammate Jason Spriggs.
Optimum Scouting has the full Weigh-in results (USC OT Zach Banner measured in at a whopping 6'8 361 pounds)
Rumors are churning from the mill, from Campbell.
Charlie Campbell has his notes from the North team practice.
Campbell's notes from the South team practice.
Thanks, Joseph. I’ll take it from here.
I want to highlight five players on offense and five players on defense who stood out on Tuesday, and how they relate to the Titans specifically.
- TE O.J. Howard, Alabama - Howard had an outstanding career at Alabama, and he was the star of the South practice on Tuesday starting with the weigh-in, where Howard far outweighed his South tight-end teammates Gerald Everett and Evan Engram. At 6’5-249, Howard has a dangerous combo of size and speed, and he could be in play for the Titans with the 18th pick.
- WR Taywan Taylor, Western Kentucky - Taylor showed the ability to get separation, getting behind Demontae Kazee deep on one play. He looked smooth and impressive, and displayed excellent burst and run-after-catch ability, running around and past Tre’Davious White for a touchdown in one-on-ones. At least early on, Taylor appears to be the best receiver on the South team.
- WR Ryan Switzer, North Carolina - In fact, both of these receivers stood out to me for the South team in one-on-one drills with the cornerbacks. Though he only measured in at 5ft-8, Switzer showed off his exceptional route-running and quickness, and he is being compared to Jamison Crowder of Washington. Either of these players could excel as next slot receiver for the Titans and could be targeted in the middle rounds of the draft.
- WR Cooper Kupp, Eastern Washington - The productive FCS receiver was the North’s best player on Tuesday. During the one-on-one period, he burned Desmond King on a deep route, beat Jourdan Lewis on a shallow slant, and abused Rasul Douglas on a 10-yard hitch. Kupp may have as high as 2nd-round consideration, and could be a target for the Titans if he falls to the third depending on how the first round plays out.
- WR Zay Jones, East Carolina - Jones had the highlight of the day with a contested catch against West Virginia’s Rasul Douglas (check out the second tweet above). He is a natural hands-catcher with a huge wingspan on his 6’1-200lb frame. Could Jones follow in the footsteps of former East Carolina great Chris Johnson?
- CB Tre’Davious White, LSU - White began showing off his quickness and recognition skills in the first minutes of practice, intercepting a pass in the early team period. He displayed great instincts in a one-on-one period where the coaches had the corners playing off-coverage (despite giving up the touchdown to Taywan Taylor). The Titans will certainly be targeting cornerbacks in this draft, and White could be a fit in the Titans mostly-man-cover scheme.
- CB Cameron Sutton, Tennessee - Cameron Sutton was sticky in coverage during the one-on-one period, able to stay with the speedy Taywan Taylor on a deep route. He made a few plays and stood out with his quickness later on in team drills. Cam Sutton is a local product who could double as a return man for the Titans. He is in play in the third round, if he lasts that long.
- DT Montravius Adams, Auburn - Adams dominated the one-on-one drills on Tuesday, showcasing explosive burst off the line of scrimmage and a highlight-reel-worthy spin move. At 6’3-300lbs, Adams could be a versatile piece on the defensive line, though he might excel as a situational pass-rusher at 3-4 DE (a type of player of which the Titans can never have enough).
- DE Daeshon Hall, Texas A&M - Hall was one of many South defensive linemen who won repeatedly in the pass-rushing one-on-ones, displaying a variety of moves. Early in the drill, Hall won with a ferocious rip and followed it up with a powerful bull rush. On a later set of back-to-back reps, he beat his man first with a nice swim move combo, then again with a quick inside spin. According the RosterWatch.com, the Titans are watching Hall very closely.
- DE Tanoh Kpassingo, Villanova - Everyone was intrigued by the Villanova product’s size; he simply looks like an NFL defensive end, and he impressed during the one-on-one pass-rushing drills against the offensive line. The Titans only spoke to one player on the field after practice on Tuesday: Kpassingo (the “K” is silent; his performance was not).