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2023 NFL Draft: Aspirational pro-player comps for top Senior Bowl prospects

When evaluating prospects, however, it is helpful to compare their skill sets to those of NFL players. This exercise can show what the future might hold.

Below I make aspirational comparisons for the top 2023 Reese’s Senior Bowl prospects. It is far from guaranteed that these players will maximize their potential after the 2023 NFL Draft (April 27-29 in Kansas City, Missouri). Many factors will play into a prospect’s professional career arc, from his personal development to the talent that surrounds him at the next destination to the acumen of the coaches on his new team.

But the current and former NFL players listed here also had to improve in areas of their game to get to where they are now, some greatly exceeding the expectations that existed for them when they were drafted. I expect some of the players listed here to step up their games in the same way.

The 2023 Senior Bowl will be held at Hancock Whitney Stadium in Mobile, Alabama, on Feb. 4, 2023 and broadcast
Aspirational NFL comp: Chandler Jones, Las Vegas Raiders.

Wilson’s power, supreme length and agility on the edge allowed him to play multiple alignments at Texas Tech, just as Jones has done throughout his pro career with New England, Arizona and Las Vegas. If Wilson works out at 265 to 270 pounds this spring after rehabbing his injured foot, his agility numbers could be very comparable to Jones’. Maximizing that talent and athleticism would mean trouble for NFL quarterbacks.

Aspirational NFL comp: Josh Allen, Buffalo Bills
Levis’ willingness to stick in the pocket is more reminiscent of Dak Prescott’s patient dual-threat game at Mississippi State than Allen’s frenetic style at Wyoming, but Levis and Allen match up in many other good — and sometimes not so good — ways. Coming out of college, many thought Allen lacked the accuracy to succeed in the NFL. Levis gets the same knocks — fairly, at least at times — but when at his best, his feet and upper body work together to deliver passes in tight spaces and deep downfield. Both players run with reckless abandon, pounding into and hurdling defenders in the open field. Even an MVP candidate like Allen still makes mistakes as he’s trying to make plays to help his team win; Levis will likely do the same at the next level, but also has the potential to lift his team to new heights.

Aspirational NFL comp: Vita Vea, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Statistically speaking, Ika has not been an ultra-productive player at Baylor (eight tackles for loss over the past two seasons), but keep in mind that Vea averaged five tackles for loss over three years at the University of Washington. Numbers do not always tell the full story of a player’s talent and impact. I’d give Vea an advantage in overall agility, but Ika still moves quite well off the ball and chases plays adeptly for a player of his size — and both will move a man-up block into the backfield or shed to attack ball-carriers. Vea lined up outside for Washington at times, and Ika also beats offensive tackles, showing some bend.

Aspirational NFL comp: Matt Judon, New England Patriots
Foskey’s impressive length, power and quickness off the edge lead me to believe he can become a similar player to Judon — a legitimate pass-rush threat with the strength to hold the edge versus the run. Foskey and Judon show the patience to wait for mobile quarterbacks to leave the pocket, as well as the ability to overwhelm athletic tackles when the immediate rush is needed.

Aspirational NFL comp: Brian Burns, Carolina Panthers
Even though Carter’s production dropped from 15.5 sacks in 2021 to just 3.5 this year, I see similar length and bend in Carter and Burns. Carter has added strength to his lean build over the past couple of seasons. However, he maintained the agility that allows him to drop into coverage and chase run plays — much like Burns, though he stood up less frequently during his time with Florida State. The sky is the limit for Carter once he gets to the NFL, but that timeline is suddenly up in the air, as a Congressional bill could prevent the Army star from deferring his mandatory two years of active-duty service after graduation.

Aspirational NFL comp: CeeDee Lamb, Dallas Cowboys
Rice’s strengths of winning contested catches, grabbing passes outside his frame and separating from cornerbacks outside look similar to those of Lamb when he starred at Oklahoma. In fact, if Rice played at a national program like Lamb did during his college career, we’d probably be hearing about him a lot more. The Mustangs’ top threat has shown he can transition from receiver to runner quickly and run through contact in the open field. Rice is prone to more drops than Lamb, but if he cleans that up and stars at the Senior Bowl, you might start seeing these two names mentioned together more often.

Aspirational NFL comp: Robert Hunt, Miami Dolphins
Hunt and Torrence both played college football at Louisiana, although Torrence transferred to spend his final season at Florida. After Hunt spent one year at right tackle for the Dolphins, he shifted inside in 2021 (where he played early in his career for the Ragin’ Cajuns) and is really starting to shine in Year 3. Once drafted, Torrence immediately should be plugged into the right guard spot, where he can use his girth, powerful grip and surprising mobility to be a major asset in the run game. I won’t be surprised if he plays closer to the 335 pounds at which Hunt is listed, to take full advantage of his athleticism.

Aspirational NFL comp: Jack Conklin, Cleveland Browns
Conklin has been a right tackle since entering the NFL, but at Michigan State, he played a very similar style of left tackle to that of Mauch. Both guys get after their man off the snap, dominating with aggression and athleticism. They’re both effective blockers on the move. Mauch played some right tackle early in his Bison career, but he might stay on the left side in the NFL, as his tenacity, foot quickness and potential to add strength give him a chance to be an excellent pass protector — like former 49ers star Joe Staley, who made six Pro Bowls despite coming from a non-Power Five school (Central Michigan).

Aspirational NFL comp: Trey Smith, Kansas City Chiefs
Eagles second-year starter Landon Dickerson would be the easy pick here because he brings similar size and position versatility (Vorhees played both guard and tackle spots at USC; Dickerson played all five O-line positions as a collegian). But I think Vorhees has the potential to be a star blocker like the Chiefs’ Smith or the Browns’ Wyatt Teller. Their overall build, impressive toughness, strong grip, powerful get-off and good mobility to hit open-field targets are what offensive line coaches look for on the interior. Smith also played left tackle at Tennessee, like Vorhees did for USC in 2021, so both could be called on to play outside in a pinch.

Aspirational NFL comp: Mike McGlinchey, San Francisco 49ers
A four-year starter who’s played both right and, most recently, left tackle for the Cougars, Freeland is approaching his potential as a top-notch pass protector who also gives his all crashing the edge on run blocks. McGlinchey made the switch from left to right tackle as a rookie with the 49ers, and it wouldn’t surprise me if Freeland returned to that side of the formation as he works toward maxing out his frame.

Aspirational NFL comp: Darius Slay, Philadelphia Eagles
Witherspoon and Slay are competitive — they constantly harass receivers downfield in coverage. They’re not big corners, which can be a challenge against larger receivers at the top of the route, but they truly fight for the ball through the catch. They are game for throwing their bodies into quick screens and run plays to chop down ball-carriers. I think if all goes well for Witherspoon, you’ll see him deflecting passes in man coverage and creating turnovers in zone like Slay.

Aspirational NFL comp: Carlos Dunlap, Kansas City Chiefs
Harrison really turned on the heat during the second half of his senior season, dominating at times against Iowa and Maryland. Some might compare him to former Buckeye Sam Hubbard or second-year Buffalo edge rushers Boogie Basham and Greg Rousseau, but his length and power on the edge remind me most of Dunlap. Harrison has flashed the quickness to turn the corner, but his inconsistency might weigh on scouts’ minds. Dunlap faced some similar concerns before he became a second-round pick in 2010. Harrison’s untapped potential is intriguing.
Aspirational NFL comp: Eric Kendricks, Minnesota Vikings

It would be easy to compare To’oTo’o to one of the Alabama linebackers selected in the top 50 since 2014, but I think his game reminds me the most of Kendricks’. Their instincts are more important to their production than pure speed, yet they both close with explosiveness to wrap up ball-carriers in the backfield, handle coverage responsibilities and blitz effectively. Intensity and assignment knowledge are also prime characteristics for both, which will help To’oTo’o earn a leadership role early in his career.

Aspirational NFL comp: Andrew Whitworth (retired)
Jones greatly improved over the past year. If he continues to work on his craft and consistently plays with a nasty attitude, it will put him on a track to be a respected longtime starter like Whitworth was. The former basketball star’s athleticism test results should look a lot like Whitworth’s when he was undervalued as a mid-second round pick in 2006. Their wide frames make it difficult for edge rushers to win outside, though both gave up the corner when hand placement and footwork were lacking during their college days. Jones played some left tackle as a young Buckeye, so it will be interesting to see if he gets reps at Whitworth’s position at the next level.

Aspirational NFL comp: Shaquil Barrett, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Hall will certainly be drafted, unlike Barrett, who was a pass-rush specialist with Denver before getting a legitimate chance to flourish with Tampa Bay in 2019. The two are similar in their stature and reliance on a strong long-arm move and quick hands to get the corner, rather than elite speed or bend. Hall stood up for most of his career in Auburn, much like Barrett, using his hustle and straight-line speed to chase down running backs and mobile quarterbacks to the outside. It’s also possible Hall could add weight and play defensive end in a 4-3 alignment, using his length and voracity to mimic the game of Cowboys stalwart Demarcus Lawrence.

Aspirational NFL comp: Morgan Moses, Baltimore Ravens
Bergeron has been an excellent left tackle for Syracuse and might stick there if a team believes he can flourish at the position like fellow former ACC tackle Christian Darrisaw (Virginia Tech) has for the Vikings. His strength and attitude as a power blocker, as well as his mirroring and anchor skills in pass protection, make me think he could return to the right tackle spot where he started early in his career with the Orange. Moses transitioned to the right side coming out of Virginia and has earned a place among the most consistent right tackles in the league.

Aspirational NFL comp: Zach Ertz, Arizona Cardinals
Musgrave did not get to show off his abilities much this year, missing all but two games due to injury. The nephew of longtime NFL offensive coach Bill Musgrave is a tall, strong (and still growing) pass catcher who has enough speed and agility to be a big-time threat down the seam and a red-zone nightmare at the next level. Forget about the fact that he only had two touchdowns in his career with the Beavers; his size and strong hands will draw comparisons to Ertz, who became a touchdown machine in his Pro Bowl years with the Eagles.

Aspirational NFL comp: Alvin Kamara, New Orleans Saints
Gray began his career at Tennessee, where Kamara starred as a dual-threat weapon for two years. Gray transferred to Oklahoma after two seasons, getting limited opportunities in 2021 before breaking out as a rusher and receiver with the Sooners this year. Gray’s low center of gravity helps him get lost in traffic and spin off contact to break big runs, much like Kamara did with the Volunteers (and does with the Saints, when healthy). Kamara did not show elite speed or quickness at the NFL Scouting Combine, but even if Gray follows suit, NFL defenders will have issues trying to bring him to the turf in the open field.

Aspirational NFL comp: Grady Jarrett, Atlanta Falcons
Jarrett was a Clemson Tiger, but that’s not why I compare him to Davis. He measured under 6-foot-1 and weighed 304 pounds at the combine, winding up as a fifth-round pick who would ultimately prove to be one of the biggest steals of the 2015 NFL Draft. Davis is similar in his lack of elite size and his ability to beat single blocks from multiple spots up front, lining up everywhere from the nose to the 5-technique. They’re both explosive off the snap and able to chase down ball-carriers. If Davis stays healthy and is allowed to attack one gap, I expect him to be a productive pro.

Aspirational NFL comp: Derwin James, Los Angeles Chargers
With his rare build, Skinner could sneak into Day 1 of the draft if he showcases top-end agility and coverage skills at the Senior Bowl and combine. He has been one of the top hitters in college football over the past couple of seasons. If used around the line of scrimmage more consistently in the NFL — like James — he will terrorize quarterbacks, be a factor against the run, find receivers in zone coverage and carry tight ends downfield. At worst, I believe he will be a solid starter as a box safety, like the Cowboys’ Jayron Kearse.

Follow Chad Reuter on Twitter.
The coaching staffs for the Atlanta Falcons and New England Patriots will coach the 2023 NFL Draft prospects participating in this year’s East-West Shrine Bowl.

Which 2023 NFL Draft prospects will be participating in the Senior Bowl? Eric Edholm highlights some of the top talents to watch at the annual college all-star game.

Georgia defensive tackle Jalen Carter, one of the top prospects in college football, announced his intention to enter the 2023 NFL Draft hours after the Bulldogs’ national title win over TCU.

The top 18 picks in the 2023 NFL Draft order are locked in. Dan Parr and Eric Edholm provide the updated order for Round 1 along with needs for every team heading into the postseason.

The top of the 2023 NFL Draft order is set, with the Bears securing the first overall pick on the final day of the 2022 NFL regular season.

The final weekend of the 2022 regular season will have a significant impact on the 2023 NFL Draft order. With that in mind, Ali Bhanpuri provides a viewer’s guide for all you draftniks out there, with eight key subplots to follow.
There are only two teams remaining with a chance to secure the first overall pick in the 2023 NFL Draft. Dan Parr and Eric Edholm provide the updated order for Round 1 along with needs for every team heading into Week 18.
The 2023 NFL Draft class added some high-profile prospects on Monday, with Alabama’s Bryce Young, Will Anderson Jr. and Jahmyr Gibbs announcing they intend to move on to the next level.

Now that President Joe Biden has signed the 2023 omnibus appropriations bill, one coveted edge-rushing prospect can breathe a sigh of relief. Eric Edholm explains why Army’s Andre Carter II, a possible top-50 pick in the 2023 NFL Draft, is one step closer to realizing his professional football dream.

In advance of one of the biggest days on the college football calendar, Chad Reuter highlights the top 10 Senior Bowl prospects to watch in New Year’s Eve Bowl games, including the national semifinal matchups.

A new bill opens the door for Army edge rusher Andre Carter II to begin his pro career in 2023 after it appeared legislation might remove him from the NFL draft prospect pool.

Texas running back Bijan Robinson, one of the top prospects in college football, announced his intention to enter the 2023 NFL Draft on Monday.

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CLASH Endurance Miami 2023: Start time, preview and how to follow live

On Friday, some of the best middle distance athletes in the sport will head to Florida to chase those all important PTO points and a slice of the $50,000 prize purse at CLASH Endurance Miami.

The race will also contribute towards the Challenge Family World Bonus and results will count towards qualification for the Challenge Family The Championship.

Below are details on the start times of the races, information on how to watch, and a preview of the elite men and women that are looking to kick their season off in style in the Sunshine State.

We should stress though that the start lists are very much subject to change, with a number of big names – such as Vincent Luis, Joe Skipper and Jackie Hering – initially announced but now not taking part. And there looks to be bad news on the coverage front this year, with no live pictures but instead a post-race production…

Start time and how to follow
The elite race at CLASH Endurance Miami takes place on Friday March 10th, 2023.

The start times are as follows:

Elite Women – 0830 local time / 1330 UK / 1430 CET
Elite Men – 1200 local time / 1700 UK / 1800 CET
Past editions of the event have been streamed live – and for free – on the CLASH Endurance Facebook and YouTube channels.

But this week the following message was posted about current plans: “If you know CLASH Endurance, you know we’re always trying new things. There will be no live coverage, however a post-race show will be released after the event.”

So if you haven’t got it already, then adding the CLASH Endurance app to your phone / mobile device is recommended for racing splits and results. It’s pretty much identical to the layout and structure of the IRONMAN app – which given that has proven itself over many years, is a good thing.

Event history and course
In 2021 the event was held under the ‘Challenge Miami’ banner, prior the rebranding of the Challenge Family North American events to ‘CLASH’. In 2022, CLASH provided some of the most thrilling races on American soil, in both Miami and Daytona.

In Miami, the race venue is the Homestead Miami Speedway, a self-enclosed motor racing circuit event. As with the Daytona International Speedway, a very convenient lake sits nicely within the centre of the circuit, primed and ready for swimmers.

Unlike the racing at Daytona however, CLASH Miami utilises the roads within the racing oval, and so is far more technical than the pure straight-line speed efforts that are the focus there.

The event will be raced over the following distances:

Swim: 1.7km / 1.05-mile (2 laps)
Bike: 62.7km / 39-miles (17 laps of 2.2 miles + one part lap to start)
Run: 16.9km / 10.5 miles (7 laps of 1.5 miles)
Pro Women
Last year, Ashleigh Gentle dominated, with the Australian winning by almost eight minutes in a performance that really set the tone for what was in store throughout the rest of the season for the PTO World #1.

This year, however, looks set to be a much more competitive race, with the absence of the defending champion from the start list really opening up the competition to a whole host of contenders.

Last season’s runner up, Brazil’s Pamela Oliveira, is an athlete who knows what it takes to get on the podium in Miami, but will face stiff competition if she has any hopes of going one better than last season.

The 35-year-old, who won IRONMAN Brasil as well as Challenge Brazil in 2022, will rely heavily on her endurance in Miami, and will have to hope her strong swim-bike combination will be enough to keep her away from some of the lightning quick runners in the field.

Sara Perez Sala (ESP) and Haley Chura (USA) are also likely to be to the fore from the outset.

Perez Sala, who won the Challenge Championship in 2022, before also finishing second at CLASH Daytona behind Angelica Olmo, will be hoping to build an insurmountable lead over the swim and the bike this Friday, with athletes such as Chura and Sif Bendix Madsen (DEN) the likely candidates to contribute to an early break.

 

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Bacardi Cup Invitational Regatta 2023

After a one-hour postponement ashore waiting for breeze, followed by a general recall, race 1 got under way at 1320 hrs in a light 7-9 knots southerly. The breeze increased at the first windward mark to 10 knots, before easing to remain between 7-9 knots for the rest of the 8nm race.

Impressive form from Denmark’s Jørgen Schönherr/Markus Koy, who found the formula to convert their position outside the top ten at the first mark to nail a decisive opening win.

We are feeling great”, smiled Koy. “I mean winning a race is always like, it couldn’t be better.”

“We feel confident, because we won the last two Bacardi Cup Races”, added Schönherr, in reference to winning the final race of the 2022 Bacardi Cup and today’s opening race.

Leading off the start and upwind were two big name teams in the Star, defending Bacardi Cup champions Mateusz Kusznierewicz/Bruno Prada and Austria’s Hans Spitzauer/Christian Nehammer. Between them they have more Olympic history than fits on two hands, counting thirteen appearances in total. Add to that multiple World and Continental Championships appearances and podium finishes across different classes and we have serious talent. The last time the two teams faced each other was at the 2021 Star Worlds, where it was advantage to Spitzauer/Nehammer who secured bronze, with Kusznierewicz/Prada in fifth.

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McDaniel Discusses Coaching Staff Moves

Mike McDaniel explained the decision to make a change with his offensive line coach but retain special teams coordinator Danny Crossman after a tough year in the kicking game.

INDIANAPOLIS — The hiring of Vic Fangio as defensive coordinator has been the big move of the offseason so far for the Miami Dolphins, but it’s been far from the only news involving the coaching staff.

One item involved the switching of offensive line coaches (from Matt Applebaum to Butch Barry) and another involved the escision to retain Danny Crossman as special teams coordinator after a difficult 2022 season in the kicking game — with the idea element that Crossman is a coach who was retained from Brian Flores’ staff.

McDANIEL ALWAYS IN CROSSMAN’S CORNER
The decision to retain Crossman raised eyebrows in part because McDaniel made the move to replace Josh Boyer as defensive coordinator and Boyer also was a holdover from Flores’ staff.

But McDaniel said Wednesday the idea of removing Crossman never really crossed his mind.

“That just comes as a result of daily evaluations of all coaching involved in the building,” McDaniel said. “I think that the Miami Dolphins fan base, the players and Danny and myself would all agree that the desired results, we have more to achieve, but if I would have determined that that was solely his … if I thought that we couldn’t get to where we need to get to go with Danny Crossman, I would have made a move. I definitely didn’t feel that way. And that just comes as a result of daily investment into the coaching staff and what he brings to the table.”

As we have suggested before, Smith was heavily involved with coaching the offensive line last season after Applebaum was hired out of Boston College. McDaniel said that needed to change and the implication clearly was that Applebaum was ready to be a full-time NFL offensive line coach.

“Realistically, from the way the staff was orchestrated the previous year, I really needed to get more offensive coordinator work out of Frank Smith and he was devoted a little too much to the offensive line,” McDaniel said. “And I needed more selfishly to alleviate some stuff off my plate. And so that was the motivating factor to make that move was to facilitate Frank Smith being able to appropriate his time more as a coordinator and less in the offensive line room.”

 

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