East-West Shrine Game Prospects to Watch — Offense

Some of FAM’s players to watch from the offensive side of the football in the East-West Shrine Bowl (January 20, 2018 3:07 PM EST).

Quarterback

Riley Ferguson — Memphis Tigers — We just discussed Ferguson in our recent updates of Group of Five Guys to Watch, and he’ll need to show accuracy in the workouts here. He’s got a big arm, size and loves the deep ball, but scouts look for more than that. We swear by JaMarcus Russell.

Quinton Flowers — South Florida Bulls — Like Lamar Jackson, Flowers showed progress as a passer and leaned less on his legs. He’s an elite athlete at the position, and if his passing checks some of the boxes he’ll boost his stock in the ever-evolving NFL.

Nick Shimonek — Texas Tech Red Raiders — He’s an accurate passer who is adept at learning an offense, luckily he also has great size at 6-3 225. He must show an ability to navigate a pro-style offense, notably going under center and making NFL reads, but he’s got the arm. Not a Mahomes arm… but an arm.

Nick Stevens — Colorado State Rams — Another player covered in of Group of Five Guys offense pieces, Stevens is a decent sized passer with some great mental traits. He’s a leader, knows how to manage an offense, and could see his stock soar with a week that shows off an NFL caliber arm.

Running Back

Justin Jackson — Northwestern Wildcats — With Jackson, the proof is in the pudding: elite stats, great vision, superb cutting ability, durability and great skills as a receiver and blocker. Yet he’s not an NFL size, nor an NFL 40 speed, and that will limit him in the eyes of some. Not us; we love pudding. A ten-year pro as a third-down back, maybe much, much more for the silky smooth runner.

Larry Rose — New Mexico State Aggies — Injury derailed his 2016, and the offense went pass happy as well, but Rose showed value as a runner his entire career, and this season showed an amazing adaptation to the passing game. He was the team’s second leading receiver in catches and yards (showing good hand), and in all amassed almost 1500 yards from scrimmage and 12 scores.

Tight End

Blake Mack — Arkansas State Red Wolves — Mack is part tight end, part fullback, all football; and we love Mack ‘s game. No, he’s not tall enough (6-3) or thick enough (230) at present, but he’s proven a mismatch for defenders and all-hustle player. NFL coaches will love him like we do thanks to his hands and run after the catch ability.

 

Cam Serigne — Wake Forest Demon Deacons — Great hands, red-zone prowess (9 TD) and a proven career stat-sheet entices us, despite like Mack a lack of NFL tight end measurables (6-3 230). He was a FAM All-FAMerican as a freshman, and continued to impress us. This year he was amazing as John Wofford’s release valve, catching 75% of his targets and doing big things with them.

Davis Wells — San Diego State Aztecs — Has all the size out prior mentions at the position lack, standing 6-5 255, and also unlike them operated out of a run first offense. His stats showed, catching just nine of eleven balls for 133 and two scores. Yet his value is his tenacity as a run-blocker, honed in Rocky Long’s scheme and undervalued entering drafts. Likely shows off as a blocker and shows surprising hands. We like Wells as a late round value pick.

Ethan Wolfe — Tennessee Volunteers — Again a player with great size (6-6 245), but unfortunately for him he played in no offense. Rarely was put in position to make plays, but showed great hands and some toughness as a blocker in years of past offense… Another potential steal.

Wide Receiver

Devonte Boyd — UNLV Rebels — He slid this season due to injury and a run-heavy offense, but he’s a natural pass catcher and runs great routes. If his injury woes are behind him, he could sneak back up team’s boards again in the pre-draft workouts.

DaeSean Hamilton — Penn State Nittany Lions — Good size, solid speed and great agility made him a reliable Big Ten receiver from the start of his PSU career. He lulled a bit as weapons galore returned to the Lions, but broke open defenses with regularity in 2017. An early contributor for someone thanks to his effort.

Justin Watson — Penn Quakers — At 6-2 215, he’s got all the size an NFL team wants, and blew up the Ivy League for a record setting career. Absolutely dominated his competition, winning accolades and almost POY awards. If he runs a 4.5, will shoot up boards, but his route-running and game intelligence are excellent.

Jake Wieneke — South Dakota State Jackrabbits — Another non-FBS talent, but with better size and more prolific stats. The Minnesota prep superstar was under-recruited out of high school but will show off his natural hands and great body usage this week. Another if he runs well look out situation.

 

Offensive Linemen

Brian Allen — Michigan State Spartans — A versatile player with time at both guard and center, he’s best at the pivot as the next of the Snapping Allens. Like his brother he’s a mean SOB in the trenches and former wrestling champ. He shows great leverage and toughness as one would expect. Could be a ten year starter at center.

Dejon Allen — Hawai’i Rainbow Warriors — Another swing lineman, this Allen played both guard and tackle for Hawai’i. At 6-3 290 he’s destined for the inside, however he’ll fare well there as a pass blocker. As a run blocker his athleticism shows, moving well in space and possessing great feet. Diocemy Saint Juste feasted behind Allen and his linemates this year.

Jake Bennett — Colorado State Rams — One of the nation’s most underrated center, we’ve been lauding him for years as superb. Led one of the best pass-blocking units once again, and powered the two-headed run game the Rams feasted on near the goal-line. We are all aboard his band-wagon as an NFL center. Texas’s Poona Ford will provide him a test in the weekly workouts.

Kyle Bosch — West Virginia Mountaineers — Excelled at WVU in a spread scheme after transferring from Michigan, but was a nasty run blocker as a prep. Seasoned, heady, and tough, he’s also 6-5 298, which adds to his profile as an NFL player. We are big on his potential as a plug-and-play guard.

Cory Helms — South Carolina Gamecocks — Good size, and great strength give him a chance at the next level, however he’s also a tremendous worker, and extremely versatile on the inside of the line. Can play guard or center, and that ability to move around serves him well.

Cody O’Connell — Washington State Cougars — The multiple award winning guard (notably All-FAMerican) excelled as a pass-blocker for Mike Leach’s Cougars, but he’s freaking 6-9 368 (not a typo), and can assert that size on most anyone, we assume. We also think he’s a legit guard prospect and not just all size, his pass blocking prowess alone is worth a look.

KC McDermott — Miami Hurricanes — A tall, mobile and seasoned (34 game starter) blocker with tackle size but experience at guard as well. Could end up on the inside, however he’s played well the paste two seasons at left tackle. Played against superb competition, and has years of reps, plus the aforementioned size.

Brett Toth — Army Black Knights — He’s an atypical academy linemen in that he’s an NFL sized 6-6 305. He’s also an elite run blocker, and hard-nosed and unbending at the point of attack. However can her pass-block? His workouts will be key, but we’re hard pressed to tell a future Army Officer he cannot do something…

 

CHECK OUT THE DEFENSIVE PLAYERS TO WATCH AS WELL!

 

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