Senior Bowl Week begins
Most NFL people are in Alabama this week for a week's worth of Senior Bowl activities. I've been saying the last few years that Senior Bowl week is becoming one of my favorite weeks of the year. This is the time that NFL teams start the process of building a Super Bowl team and a solid performance in Mobile this week will go a long way in helping a player's draft stock.
Monday is traditionally the "meat market" day where players are measured and sized up. This is one of many steps that some NFL prospects will have to overcome to prove they can play at the next level.
Take Russell Wilson as an example. Wilson performed well both in practices and the game itself. But there was so much concern about his height that it hurt his stock. It got to the point where Wilson was one of the most dissected players of the 2012 draft. But discussion and debate can work in one's favor. There was no question Wilson had the ability and the intangibles to stick on an NFL roster. At the very least, he was worth another look on film and anyone who watched Wilson his senior year saw a player worthy of the NFL in every aspect except one: his height. It simply came down to when an NFL team would take a flyer on Wilson.
And therein lies a lesson in the NFL Draft process, in which a prospect is analyzed ad nauseam. Don't worry about the numbers and watch the film. If a player can play, he'll find his way on to the roster. And the Seattle Seahawks were rewarded for their pick of Wilson with a trip to the playoffs. The whole key for seniors this week is to do enough good to get the GMs and personnel people to watch the film from the previous season.
As such, the one player that sticks out to me is Fresno State running back Robbie Rouse. He measured in at 5'5" which would seem too short to play in the NFL. His 40 time isn't spectacular either. But the scouting report on him is that he runs hard with some explosion. He'll likely be a late round pick but the film suggests he has the tools necessary to make a roster and perhaps have a DuJuan Harris-type impact for an NFL team.