Senior Bowl  

 

Desmond Trufant's draft stock soaring; Ezekiel Ansah too raw?

MOBILE, Ala. -- Now that we are through three full days of Senior Bowl practices, it's time to single out a few players who have seen their draft stock rise or fall here:

Risers

Desmond Trufant, CB, Washington: Trufant has been the top cornerback in Mobile. He has shown outstanding foot quickness, agility and ball skills. Most teams that I spoke with prior to the Senior Bowl had Trufant pegged as a middle-of-the-second-round-type player. Following three days of practice, nearly every personnel executive I spoke with considers him a likely first-round pick.

Brandon Williams, DT, Missouri Southern: Williams quickly garnered the attention of NFL personnel during the weigh-ins, checking in at a whopping 341 pounds. He hasn't had any trouble using his size and strength to overpower opposing linemen in one-on-one pass-rush drills. However, his surprisingly nimble footwork is what has been most impressive. He is being talked about as a likely second-round pick.

Marquise Goodwin, WR, Texas: Every time Goodwin lines up for a repetition in one-on-ones, there is a hush in the crowd. NFL evaluators have been intoxicated by his explosiveness off the line of scrimmage and ability to find another gear when the ball is in the air. He has been caught up in press coverage a few times this week, but his overall performance has left quite an impression on clubs in need of a home-run hitter at receiver.

Quinton Patton, WR, Louisiana Tech and Markus Wheaton, WR, Oregon State: I couldn't include one of these players without adding the other. Both Patton and Wheaton have been outstanding the entire week of practice. Patton is a little bit stronger than Wheaton, but they are both natural route-runners with incredible quickness. Both guys have made impressive catches on 50-50 balls, defeating cornerbacks with equal opportunities to make a play. Patton and Wheaton can play either inside or outside and should immediately contribute to the teams that draft them. These are plug-and-play-type talents.

Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma: Central Michigan offensive tackle Eric Fisher has put together a dominant week of practice, but that was expected by most NFL evaluators. Johnson, on the other hand, didn't show up in Mobile with quite the same reputation. Through the first three days of practice, there aren't many NFL personnel men who consider Johnson anything other than a first-round talent. He's played both left and right tackle and handled opposing pass rushers with ease during the one-on-one pass-rush drills. He also has shown a nasty side in the run game.

Sliders

Ezekiel "Ziggy" Ansah, DE, BYU: Ansah is one of the most physically gifted players in this draft class, but he showed this week that he still has a lot of developing to do. During pass-rush periods, he repeatedly tried to work through the numbers of the offensive tackle, but his bull rush was rarely effective. He flashed one inside-spin move, but otherwise was predictable and unsuccessful in his pass-rushing attempts. Some teams are concerned with what transpired this week, while others are still bullish on the incredible upside of the BYU defender.

Margus Hunt, DE, SMU: Hunt is very similar to Ansah. Both guys grew up outside of the United States and are relatively new to the game of football. They both emerged late in the season and created an incredible buzz in the scouting community. However, just as Ansah has struggled in Mobile, Hunt has been unable to make an impact at practice. Hunt is 6-foot-8, and that makes it difficult for him to lower his pads and generate a consistent pass rush. He is a project-type prospect, but there could be a nice payoff a few years down the line for whichever team drafts him.

Will Davis, CB, Utah State: I watched some tape on Davis prior to the Senior Bowl and liked what I saw from the Utah State defender. He showed good awareness and ball skills during the games I studied. Unfortunately, his Senior Bowl week hasn't gone nearly as smoothly. Davis has been beaten vertically numerous times during both one-on-ones and team periods. His deep speed is a major question, and his confidence appeared to be shaken.

Oday Aboushi, OT, Virginia: Aboushi has struggled at tackle this week. Most clubs believe he will be better suited to slide inside and play offensive guard at the next level. He has had trouble dealing with athletic edge rushers because of his lack of foot quickness and agility. Aboushi has taken some reps at guard, but he doesn't have a comfort level at the position right now. He looked like a mid-round-type player this week.

Follow Daniel Jeremiah on Twitter @MoveTheSticks.

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