Photo Essays  

 

Published: Jan. 25, 2016 at 01:54 p.m.
Updated: Jan. 25, 2016 at 06:18 p.m.

Players whose draft stock rose at all-star games

With the East-West Shrine Game already complete and Reese's Senior Bowl set to take place this week (with the game being broadcast live exclusively on NFL Network on Jan. 30 at 2 p.m. ET), here is a look at NFL players who enjoyed a rise in their draft stock thanks to performances in the postseason all-star games.

9 Photos Total

  • <b>School:</b> Hobart
<br><b>All-star game:</b> 2015 Senior Bowl
<br><b>Draft:</b> <a href="http://www.nfl.com/draft/2015/" target="new">2015 NFL Draft</a>, second round (<a href="http://www.nfl.com/draft/2015/profiles/ali-marpet?id=2552332" target="new">No. 61 overall</a>), Tampa Bay Buccaneers
<br><br>
Marpet was the first Division III player chosen to play in the Senior Bowl, and the small-school prospect made the most of his opportunity to go up against the "big boys." Marpet used the Senior Bowl to springboard his draft stock, which continued its rise at the NFL Scouting Combine.
<br><br>
"The concern was how would he do when he stepped up the competition at the Senior Bowl, and he answered the bell," NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah said when the Bucs selected Marpet in the draft. "He got better each and every day." 9

    Johnny Vy

    Ali Marpet

    School: Hobart
    All-star game: 2015 Senior Bowl
    Draft: 2015 NFL Draft, second round (No. 61 overall), Tampa Bay Buccaneers

    Marpet was the first Division III player chosen to play in the Senior Bowl, and the small-school prospect made the most of his opportunity to go up against the "big boys." Marpet used the Senior Bowl to springboard his draft stock, which continued its rise at the NFL Scouting Combine.

    "The concern was how would he do when he stepped up the competition at the Senior Bowl, and he answered the bell," NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah said when the Bucs selected Marpet in the draft. "He got better each and every day."

  • <b>School:</b> Notre Dame
<br><b>All-star game:</b> 2014 Senior Bowl
<br><b>Draft:</b> <a href="http://www.nfl.com/draft/2014/" target="new">2014 NFL Draft</a>, first round (<a href="http://www.nfl.com/draft/2014/profiles/zack-martin?id=2543480" target="new">No. 16 overall</a>), Dallas Cowboys
<br><br>
Coming out of Notre Dame, Martin wasn't exactly flying under the radar heading into Senior Bowl week. However, the offensive lineman <a href="http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap2000000317502/article/mike-mayock-on-zack-martin-hes-even-better-than-i-thought" target="new">was dominant in Mobile, Ala.</a>
<br><br>
"At the Senior Bowl, he stoned everybody all week long," NFL Media draft analyst Mike Mayock said when the Cowboys selected Martin in the draft. 8

    Johnny Vy

    Zack Martin

    School: Notre Dame
    All-star game: 2014 Senior Bowl
    Draft: 2014 NFL Draft, first round (No. 16 overall), Dallas Cowboys

    Coming out of Notre Dame, Martin wasn't exactly flying under the radar heading into Senior Bowl week. However, the offensive lineman was dominant in Mobile, Ala.

    "At the Senior Bowl, he stoned everybody all week long," NFL Media draft analyst Mike Mayock said when the Cowboys selected Martin in the draft.

  • <b>School:</b> Central Michigan
<br><b>All-star game:</b> 2013 Senior Bowl
<br><b>Draft:</b> <a href="http://www.nfl.com/draft/2013/" target="new">2013 NFL Draft</a>, first round (<a href="http://www.nfl.com/draft/2013/profiles/eric-fisher?id=2539213" target="new">No. 1 overall</a>), Kansas City Chiefs
<br><br>
Fisher dominated at the 2013 Senior Bowl, emerging as not just a bona fide top-10 draft prospect but as perhaps the top tackle in the draft. The latter point was hotly debated in the months between the Senior Bowl and draft, with Texas A&M's Luke Joeckel also in the discussion. Ultimately, Fisher took the lead and the Chiefs made him the first player from the MAC to be chosen No. 1 overall.
<br><br>
"I don't think anybody moved the needle quite like Fisher did," NFL Media senior analyst Gil Brandt said. 7

    Ben Liebenberg

    Eric Fisher

    School: Central Michigan
    All-star game: 2013 Senior Bowl
    Draft: 2013 NFL Draft, first round (No. 1 overall), Kansas City Chiefs

    Fisher dominated at the 2013 Senior Bowl, emerging as not just a bona fide top-10 draft prospect but as perhaps the top tackle in the draft. The latter point was hotly debated in the months between the Senior Bowl and draft, with Texas A&M's Luke Joeckel also in the discussion. Ultimately, Fisher took the lead and the Chiefs made him the first player from the MAC to be chosen No. 1 overall.

    "I don't think anybody moved the needle quite like Fisher did," NFL Media senior analyst Gil Brandt said.

  • <b>School:</b> BYU
<br><b>All-star game:</b> 2013 Senior Bowl
<br><b>Draft:</b> <a href="http://www.nfl.com/draft/2013/" target="new">2013 NFL Draft</a>, first round (<a href="http://www.nfl.com/draft/2013/profiles/ezekiel-ansah?id=2539931" target="new">No. 5 overall</a>), Detroit Lions
<br><br>
Ansah -- who tried out for the BYU basketball team twice but was cut -- walked on to the school's track team, and then was persuaded to try out for football. It worked out. Still a raw -- but freakishly athletic -- draft prospect in 2013, Ansah created some buzz in the NFL scouting community during the Senior Bowl. Ansah is just now coming into his own as an NFL player, registering a career-high 14.5 sacks in 2015. 6

    Ben Liebenberg

    Ziggy Ansah

    School: BYU
    All-star game: 2013 Senior Bowl
    Draft: 2013 NFL Draft, first round (No. 5 overall), Detroit Lions

    Ansah -- who tried out for the BYU basketball team twice but was cut -- walked on to the school's track team, and then was persuaded to try out for football. It worked out. Still a raw -- but freakishly athletic -- draft prospect in 2013, Ansah created some buzz in the NFL scouting community during the Senior Bowl. Ansah is just now coming into his own as an NFL player, registering a career-high 14.5 sacks in 2015.

  • <b>School:</b> Oregon
<br><b>All-star game:</b> 2013 Senior Bowl
<br><b>Draft:</b> <a href="http://www.nfl.com/draft/2013/" target="new">2013 NFL Draft</a>, first round (<a href="http://www.nfl.com/draft/2013/profiles/kyle-long?id=2539933" target="new">No. 20 overall</a>), Chicago Bears
<br><br>
Long -- despite being the son of Pro Football Hall of Fame defensive end Howie Long -- was relatively new to football when he entered the 2013 draft prospect pool. Kyle had played some baseball, enrolling at Florida State to pitch. He eventually switched to football, and played one season at Oregon. A strong performance at the Senior Bowl <a href="http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000620991/article/bears-kyle-long-to-prospects-dont-pass-up-senior-bowl-invite" target="new">helped Long emerge</a> as a first-round draft choice. 5

    G.M. Andrews

    Kyle Long

    School: Oregon
    All-star game: 2013 Senior Bowl
    Draft: 2013 NFL Draft, first round (No. 20 overall), Chicago Bears

    Long -- despite being the son of Pro Football Hall of Fame defensive end Howie Long -- was relatively new to football when he entered the 2013 draft prospect pool. Kyle had played some baseball, enrolling at Florida State to pitch. He eventually switched to football, and played one season at Oregon. A strong performance at the Senior Bowl helped Long emerge as a first-round draft choice.

  • <b>School:</b> North Carolina State
<br><b>All-star game:</b> 2004 Senior Bowl
<br><b>Draft:</b> <a href="/draft/history/fulldraft?season=2004" target="new">2004 NFL Draft</a>, first round (No. 4 overall), New York Giants
<br><br>
After shattering passing records at N.C. State, <a href="http://www.nfl.com/photos/0ap2000000316098/0ap2000000316087" target="new">Rivers earned MVP honors</a> in the 2004 Senior Bowl game, which only solidified his status as a first-round prospect. Then-Chargers coach Marty Schottenheimer coached Rivers at the Senior Bowl, and liked what he saw. The Chargers had the No. 1 overall pick in the 2004 draft and chose Eli Manning. Manning refused to sign with San Diego, which forced the team to adjust its plans. Enter Rivers, who emerged as one of the game's most gifted passers. 4

    Denis Poroy

    Philip Rivers

    School: North Carolina State
    All-star game: 2004 Senior Bowl
    Draft: 2004 NFL Draft, first round (No. 4 overall), New York Giants

    After shattering passing records at N.C. State, Rivers earned MVP honors in the 2004 Senior Bowl game, which only solidified his status as a first-round prospect. Then-Chargers coach Marty Schottenheimer coached Rivers at the Senior Bowl, and liked what he saw. The Chargers had the No. 1 overall pick in the 2004 draft and chose Eli Manning. Manning refused to sign with San Diego, which forced the team to adjust its plans. Enter Rivers, who emerged as one of the game's most gifted passers.

  • <b>School:</b> Mississippi Valley State
<br><b>All-star game:</b> 1984 Blue-Gray Classic
<br><b>Draft:</b> <a href="/draft/history/fulldraft?season=1985" target="new">1985 NFL Draft</a>, first round (No. 16 overall), San Francisco 49ers
<br><br>
Rice went into this game in 1984 trying to "make a point for small college players." Rice scored two TDs and was the MVP of the Blue-Gray Classic, a college all-star game that was a Christmas Day tradition for decades but discontinued after 2003.
<br><br>
Rice wasn't an unknown prospect heading into the 1985 draft. He had caught the eye of 49ers coach Bill Walsh the previous fall. The defending Super Bowl champion 49ers traded up in the draft in order to get Rice, who wound up <a href="/videos/san-francisco-49ers/09000d5d81bdfa81/Top-100-Jerry-Rice" target="new">having an NFL career</a> of <a href="http://www.profootballhof.com/players/jerry-rice/" target="new">some renown</a>. 3

    Greg Trott

    Jerry Rice

    School: Mississippi Valley State
    All-star game: 1984 Blue-Gray Classic
    Draft: 1985 NFL Draft, first round (No. 16 overall), San Francisco 49ers

    Rice went into this game in 1984 trying to "make a point for small college players." Rice scored two TDs and was the MVP of the Blue-Gray Classic, a college all-star game that was a Christmas Day tradition for decades but discontinued after 2003.

    Rice wasn't an unknown prospect heading into the 1985 draft. He had caught the eye of 49ers coach Bill Walsh the previous fall. The defending Super Bowl champion 49ers traded up in the draft in order to get Rice, who wound up having an NFL career of some renown.

  • <b>School:</b> Oklahoma
<br><b>All-star game:</b> 1975 Senior Bowl
<br><b>Draft:</b> <a href="/draft/history/fulldraft?season=1975" target="new">1975 NFL Draft</a>, fourth round (No. 96 overall), Dallas Cowboys
<br><br>
The Cowboys selected Hughes in the 1975 draft strictly off his performance at the Senior Bowl. Hughes was one of 12 rookies who made the Cowboys' roster that season, which ended with an appearance in Super Bowl X.
<br><br>
Hughes -- a defensive back -- played six seasons in Dallas, recording nine career interceptions and one pick six. When the Cowboys returned to Super Bowl XII, Hughes responded with a big day, recording an interception of former Cowboys QB Craig Morton and two fumble recoveries. 2

    Bill Haber

    Randy Hughes

    School: Oklahoma
    All-star game: 1975 Senior Bowl
    Draft: 1975 NFL Draft, fourth round (No. 96 overall), Dallas Cowboys

    The Cowboys selected Hughes in the 1975 draft strictly off his performance at the Senior Bowl. Hughes was one of 12 rookies who made the Cowboys' roster that season, which ended with an appearance in Super Bowl X.

    Hughes -- a defensive back -- played six seasons in Dallas, recording nine career interceptions and one pick six. When the Cowboys returned to Super Bowl XII, Hughes responded with a big day, recording an interception of former Cowboys QB Craig Morton and two fumble recoveries.

  • <b>School:</b> Kentucky
<br><b>All-star game:</b> 1966 Senior Bowl
<br><b>Draft:</b> <a href="/draft/history/fulldraft?season=1966" target="new">1966 NFL Draft</a>, second round (No. 26 overall), San Francisco 49ers
<br><br> 
Windsor -- who was drafted as a tight end -- played in a Wishbone offense at Kentucky and had more attempts rushing the ball than receiving it. He wasn't expected to be a top draft prospect in 1966, but was impressive catching the ball in that year's Senior Bowl.
<br><br>
Windsor wound up playing nine seasons in the NFL, five with the 49ers and his final four with the New England Patriots. He caught 185 passes for 2,307 yards and 14 touchdowns in his career. 1

    Al Messerschmidt Archive

    Bob Windsor

    School: Kentucky
    All-star game: 1966 Senior Bowl
    Draft: 1966 NFL Draft, second round (No. 26 overall), San Francisco 49ers

    Windsor -- who was drafted as a tight end -- played in a Wishbone offense at Kentucky and had more attempts rushing the ball than receiving it. He wasn't expected to be a top draft prospect in 1966, but was impressive catching the ball in that year's Senior Bowl.

    Windsor wound up playing nine seasons in the NFL, five with the 49ers and his final four with the New England Patriots. He caught 185 passes for 2,307 yards and 14 touchdowns in his career.