Most of the prospects in Mobile this past week will get drafted in April, with a plethora likely to come off the board in the top 100 picks. Only a handful will be Round 1 picks however, perhaps less this year than even in years' past. After studying this crop of Senior Bowl candidates closely, here are the only players from the roster that I believe have a shot at coming off the board in the first 32 picks on April 25.
Drew Lock, QB, Missouri
But what about the inconsistent accuracy? The sloppy mechanics under pressure? The slow processing at times? I get it, Lock comes with a whole bundle of concerns, but the NFL is going to love his intangibles, the improvements he made late in his senior season and of course his impressive arm. Like it or not, Lock probably has the best chance to go Round 1 of any prospect that was in Mobile.
Garrett Bradbury, IOL, N.C. State
I'm going to go crazy and say that after Lock, Bradbury has the best chance to go Round 1 out of all the Senior Bowl prospects. barely edging out Sweat and Dillard. An elite athlete with impressive technique and savvy for the position, Bradbury is the ideal center the NFL is looking for. He gives some ground in pass protection, but finds a way to win with good hand usage, while dominating in the ground game. His strong week in Mobile will help his case considerably.
Montez Sweat, EDGE, Mississippi State
The buzz on Sweat this week was top 10, with the first round considered a lock. Not so fast, though. Sweat is a good player with a well-rounded skill set, but I can't see him blowing up the Combine, and pass rushers who lack burst and bend off the edge typically don't live up to first round hype. Sweat will attract enough teams to potentially sneak into the back end of Round 1, but the top ten hype will calm down soon.
Andre Dillard, OT, Washington State
A terrific athlete with ideal measurables and movement skills, Dillard fits the baseline criteria of what NFL teams covet in offensive tackles. Never mind the issues in his footwork reaching proper set points, his occasional pillow hands in pass protection and his lack of experience/dominance in the run game. If Kolton Miller can go top 20, Dillard has a shot to be this year's first round developmental offensive tackle.
Daniel Jones, QB, Duke
I'll be honest, I don't buy the "Daniel Jones top 2o" or "first round lock" talk right now. What are we getting excited about here? He doesn't make tough throws. He lacks arm strength for distance and velocity. His production is middling. He throws too many interceptions. I just don't get it.
Nevertheless, the NFL reportedly likes Jones enough to consider him in this range. I don't think he'll come off the board in Round 1, but in a late, trade-back-into-the-first scenario? Jones has a better chance than most Senior Bowl prospects of finding his way into the top 32.
Dalton Risner, OT, Kansas State
I'm not sure Risner is going to go Round 1, but we're really running out of reasons why he shouldn't. His dominant Senior Bowl week combined with better measurables than expected, high character and terrific tape are going to be tough for every team to ignore. Plus the positional versatility he could offer is something the NFL usually covets. He isn't getting a lot of buzz, but at the very least Risner should be a lock for the top 50.
Charles Omenihu, EDGE, Texas
The first of two sleepers to sneak into Round 1, Omenihu is probably more likely to rise into the Round 2 range, but for kicks lets say he has a shot at the top 32. He should, given the fact he has better edge pass rush tools than Sweat while being just as good against the run, but it doesn't sound like the NFL sees it that way just yet. A strong Combine on top of being a standout in Mobile could do wonders for Omenihu.
Nasir Adderley, S, Delaware
Sleeper no. 2. Well for the first round anyway, not as a prospect. At this point, everyone knows about Adderley's skills on the football field, from his range and ball skills to his physicality and run defense to his outstanding character and work ethic. But will it be enough to force teams to forgo their small school reservations and take the Delaware star in Round 1? You know what will help? A 4.4 40 and good jumps at the Combine in a few weeks.