So as I sat on my lanai, staring at my laptop and feeling sorry for myself, being in Orlando instead of Mobile, my fingers stumbled upon a recent tweet which mentioned the first Top 50 pre-Draft Prospect rankings from Daniel Jeremiah, alias Move the Sticks. I made a mental note to return to the link to that piece while I watched what seemed like a laboriously slow posting of Senior Bowl player measurements, one by one. Then the light went on Senior Bowl, Jeremiah, player measurements, prospect rankings… wait for it… BINGO! With Jeremiah being on of the half-dozen or so Draftniks that I trust and lean on for info over the next 3 months why don’t I see how many of DJ’s guys are in Mobile this week for Senior Bowl activities.
So before I bore down to the roots of who’s there, and who’s not that DJ really likes let’s float some numbers and explanations of the rules the Senior Bowl has to play by. While Jeremiah is picking from 500 or more eligible players, as verified by the NFL itself, for the 2023 Draft, Jim NAGY has a smaller list, from which he may only “invite” the top 125 or so to come to Mobile. So I grab the print-out from NFL to the Media from last week, which lists the college players who have petitioned the League to seek employment now with the NFL. The list included collegiate 69 players who the League declared eligible for the next Draft, at the end of April. Those 69 players are NOT eligible by rule for the All-Star Games, of which the Senior Bowl is King, and still champion of recruiters for their game venue.
The League also listed 13 players who also petitioned to be included in the Draft. These 13 were granted acceptance by the NFL because they have received their college degrees. Any of these 13 are eligible for the All-Star Games. NAGY recruited some of them, but only 1 of them (Isaiah Foskey/Notre Dame) is in Mobile, but surprisingly not on DJ’s Top 50.
Of the total of 13 mentioned above, 3 were in the Top 50, but chose not to attend the Senior Bowl.
In one final category 4 players who sought an exemption to be in the Draft, were told they did not need to. And one of them, TE LUKE MUSGRAVE/Oregon St, is at the Senior Bowl.
The Senior Bowl effectively has 10 of Jeremiah’s Top 50 players in their Game. They thought they had 13, but 2 withdrew KINCAID/TE/Utah & TYREE WILSON/Texas Tech due to injury. And WITHERSPOON/Illinois withdrew, reason unknown, last week.
Another of DJ’s 50 went to the Shrine Game, in ZAY FLOWERS WR B.C.
Another actual senior who declined the game because of a season long injury, NOLAN SMITH/Georgia, is also on Jeremiah’s list.
The real hit comes from a category that JIM NAGY is powerless to impact, that is the declared players on that list of 69. It s after all the Senior Bowl, not the Underclassmen Bowl as former game Director PHIL SAVAGE used to say. The math says that 32 of 50 players on Jeremiah’s list are underclassmen, and thus not fair game for recruitment.
So the simple truth of the matter is, as usual, the Reeses’ Senior Bowl gets the vast majority of the eligible to attend players. End of discussion.
PS To those of you who missed it in all the BRADY retirement talk this morning, RB Roshcon Johnson/Texas broke a bone in his hand in yesterday’s practice. He is out of the game unfortunately.