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Vandy's Jordan Matthews stands out at Senior Bowl practice


MOBILE, Ala. -- The second day of practices at the Reese's Senior Bowl wrapped up Tuesday. Here are some of the things we learned about the top prospects here:

Matthews turns heads

After grousing about dropping a few passes Monday, Vanderbilt wide receiver Jordan Matthews was spectacular at Tuesday's practice. He got open consistently and made a few very difficult grabs, and NFL Media analyst Charles Davis took notice of his ability to catch the ball in traffic.

"He will go into the briar patch, take his hits and keep on ticking," Davis said after Tuesday's practice. "I never worry about that part with him. Obviously, people are going to want to know what he runs (at the combine). All in all, I think he's a big-time prospect. Let's face it: How many quarterbacks threw to him at Vanderbilt? Try to name them all. Yet everyone knew he was coming each week in the SEC."

After the South practice Tuesday afternoon, Matthews wasn't finished. He and Fresno State quarterback Derek Carr continued working on red-zone throws on their own.

Clowning around

South Carolina defensive end Jadeveon Clowney, one of the draft's elite prospects, won't ever get to play in a Senior Bowl after forgoing his final year of college eligibility for the draft. But the Gamecocks phenom couldn't help but come down to Mobile, Ala., and check out the scene.

And of course, that in itself was a scene. Among other things, social media reports had Clowney introducing himself to new Houston Texans coach Bill O'Brien, whose club holds the first pick in the draft.

Tough break for Colvin

Oklahoma cornerback Aaron Colvin tore an ACL in his knee Tuesday, a crushing blow to one of the Senior Bowl's most promising prospects. Colvin was impressive Monday in coverage at the South practice in Fairhope, Ala., and had begun Tuesday with a good showing as well.

Roster shuffle

Colorado State tight end Crockett Gilmore got a late call from the Senior Bowl to replace injured Fresno State tight end Marcus Jensen, who has an abdominal strain. With a couple of practices already in the books, Gilmore (6-6, 250) will waste no time traveling.

Also pulling out of the Senior Bowl were Alabama defensive end Ed Stinson (groin) and Tennessee offensive lineman Ja'Wuan James (knee sprain). James had looked solid at Monday's practice. Stinson stuck around long enough to complete his interviews with NFL clubs before leaving Mobile.

One to watch

Wyoming cornerback Marqueston Huff (6-0, 195) has been impressive this week, and NFL Media senior analyst Gil Brandt's operatives in Mobile have been watching:

Brandt later tweeted that Huff has sub-4.4 speed and could be one of the top 100 players drafted. Asked about Huff at the post-practice news conference, North squad coach Mike Smith said: "It looks like he's going to be a physical corner."

Wind plays tricks

A blustery wind that whistled through Ladd-Peebles Stadium Tuesday made things tough on quarterbacks, particularly for the North squad's morning practice. Virginia Tech's Logan Thomas struggled in the conditions. Clemson's Tajh Boyd dealt with the wind more effectively, but still found it hard to deal with.

Quick hits

» Missouri defensive end Michael Sam was panned by draft services on social media for a poor practice Tuesday, struggling at both linebacker and defensive end. He faces a difficult NFL transition as an undersized defensive end who may be moved to linebacker. Sam, for his part, was far more upbeat about his practice performance. "It's coming along," he said. "I was better today than yesterday, and I think I'll be better every day this week."

» Pittsburgh defensive lineman Aaron Donald was outstanding in morning one-on-one drills. Although he measured only about 6-1 at the weigh-in Monday, Donald showed technique, leverage and lots of raw power in getting underneath offensive linemen, and holding his own in double-team drills as well.

» Western Kentucky RB Antonio Andrews juked LSU LB Lamin Barrow off his feet late in Tuesday's South practice with a sharp cut inside after catching a quick pass into the flat. Andrews has shown he can move well for a 225-pound back.

Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter @ChaseGoodbread.



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