MOBILE, Ala. -- The second day of Under Armour Senior Bowl practice typically brings about better play, as the players begin to shake off the anxiety of performing in front of a host of general managers, scouts and coaches.
Although most evaluators are willing dismiss some of the miscues from the first day, it is important for prospects to step up their game and display the skills that earned them a Senior Bowl invitation.
While most of the attention has been focused on the up-and-down performance of Tim Tebow, there are plenty of other NFL hopefuls who have had their moments throughout the first few practices in Mobile.
Let’s take a look at a few players who have created a buzz in scouting circles for their performance after two days of workouts:
Mike Iupati, G, Idaho
The mammoth interior blocker has earned rave reviews for his sensational play throughout the North’s practice sessions. Iupati has absolutely dominated defenders at the point of attack, and his ability to routinely put elite players on the ground is indicative of his supremacy. Furthermore, the former Vandal has shown outstanding footwork and movement skills to complement his impressive combination of strength and power. With Iupati showing off a dazzling blend of skills, some scouts have projected him as a right tackle.
Syd’Quan Thompson, CB, California
The Bears' star has created quite a stir with his exceptional play during the North’s practice sessions. Thompson’s combination of cover skills and toughness is rare, and he started to evoke memories of Antoine Winfield at the position. While some scouts are still concerned about his size deficiency, Thompson’s knack for making plays on the ball and delivering punishing hits during drills has him creeping up draft boards across the league.
Sean Weatherspoon, LB, Missouri
The loquacious headhunter has opened eyes within the scouting community for his solid play in the middle. Weatherspoon has surprised some with his aggressive nature and his ability to play physical against blockers. Though he will need to prove that he can be a hammer against the run in game action, Weatherspoon has undoubtedly improved his stature among a solid group of linebackers at the Senior Bowl with his forceful play.
Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee
Williams has continued to ride the momentum from his solid senior season to push himself into first-round consideration. The Vols' star is adept at creating penetration up the gut, and his ability to chase down backs from the backside disrupts the flow of the running game. With Williams flashing dominant ability at the point of attack, it is not a surprise that his stock is shooting up the charts in the eyes of evaluators.
Anthony Dixon, RB, Mississippi State
The former Bulldog has quietly impressed scouts looking for a bruiser at the running back position. Dixon's imposing stature complements a hard-nosed running style that makes him a feared runner between the tackles. Although he lacks the speed or receiving skills to be used as "three-down" player, his gritty demeanor and running style make him a coveted prospect for teams favoring power football.
Taylor Mays, S, USC
The most impressive physical specimen on the field has underwhelmed scouts with his play this week. Mays has struggled staying with receivers in drills, and his outstanding measurables haven’t translated into smooth or fluid movements in coverage. While he has shown up occasionally as a hitter against the run, Mays' inability to get around the ball consistently has drawn red flags from scouts expecting to see a "can’t miss" talent at the safety position.
Javier Arenas, CB, Alabama
The diminutive corner has been a slight disappointment to some due to his lack of top-end speed. Arenas’ difficulty running with speed receivers has led some scouts to peg him solely as a "nickel corner." While his exceptional return skills still make him a valued prospect, his perceived inability to project as a starting corner will lead him to slide down many draft boards.