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January 24, 2013 @ 9:29 am
Current rating: 3.67 Stars/3 Votes

The Senior Bowl Daily Report: Inside The South Practice 1-23

Written by Pewter
Report Staff
Pewter Report Staff

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What last second roster changes took place on Wednesday at the Senior Bowl? What offensive linemen stood out during the course of Wednesday's practice? Which Gator players got the best of their cross-state rival Seminoles Wednesday? Find out these answers and more in this South team practice report brought to you by The Theater Doctor.
The South team took the field at Ladd-Peebles Stadium on Wednesday afternoon for the last full contact practice of Senior Bowl week. Led by Jim Schwartz and the Lions staff, the South squad practice got underway under partially cloudy skies and a temperature in the low 60’s.

Before the start of Wednesday’s practice, the South team announced a couple of roster changes. Texas A&M wide receiver Ryan Swope suffered an injury and was replaced by LSU receiver Russell Shepard, Clemson running back Andre Ellington also sustained an injury at some point this week and was replaced by Miami running back Mike James and Arkansas Pine-Bluff offensive tackle Terron Armstead, who was fantastic last week at the East-West Shrine game, replaced offensive lineman Dallas Thomas of Tennessee.

Shepard proved to be the best of the replacement players on Wednesday, showing some excellent quickness and burst during his first practice in Mobile. He is a very good route-runner that gets in and out of his breaks very quickly. After just one day of practice, he has already left a good impression on talent evaluators.

After a long period of warm-ups and stretching, the South team worked on field goal attempts before going into the individual and group periods. The quarterbacks worked with the wide receivers on certain routes as their targets ran through cones and then the offense went into a group install period.

While the offense installed plays, the defensive linemen were working the bags and the defensive backs were running an interception drill that focused on the players adjusting to the ball and moving their hips. Cal cornerback Marc Anthony and Georgia safety Bacarri Rambo displayed the most fluid hips out of the defensive backs in this drill. Unfortunately Rambo did not finish practice due to what looked like a leg injury. The Georgia product was not having a great week of practice prior to getting hurt.

The defensive linemen then worked on smashing into pads from their knees and working on their lower body explosion and use of quick hands while the defensive backs worked on keeping their shoulders squared up when making form tackles. William & Mary cornerback B.W. Webb exploded into San Diego State’s Leon McFadden during this drill, which drew praise from the coaching staff.

While the quarterbacks prepared to go up against the South team defense by working on crossing patterns with wide receivers, the offensive linemen came together with the defensive line to run a one-on-one pass rushing drill. First up in this drill was Oklahoma offensive tackle Lane Johnson.

Johnson made himself a lot of money this week in Mobile. He has been absolutely outstanding all week at practice and he capped it off with a tremendous showing in this drill on Wednesday by holding off every single pass rusher on the South squad. He stoned LSU defensive end Lavar Edwards multiple times and also won against BYU’s Ezekial Ansah.

Arkansas Pine-Bluff offensive tackle Terron Armstead, who took the roster spot of the injured Dallas Thomas, also had a very solid practice. Armstead had a great week of practices last week at the East-West Shrine game and earned the opportunity to play in the Senior Bowl this week as an alternate. Armstead won the majority of his one-on-one battles on Wednesday and also was a factor in the ground game. With just one Senior Bowl practice under his belt, he has already made a good impression.

Virginia offensive tackle Oday Aboushi had an up-and-down session of one-on-ones. The former Cavalier first dumped Clemson defensive end Malliciah Goodman to the ground after an attempted bulrush. Aboushi displayed very good quick feet and used his lower body to shove Goodman to the ground. Later on in the drill, Aboushi was destroyed by Georgia defensive end Cornelius Washington on a swim move. Aboushi didn’t even get a hand on Washington and would’ve been killed for a would-be sack. In Aboushi’s defense, he was lined up as a right tackle during this rep, which isn’t his natural position.

Florida State defensive tackle Everett Dawkins had a poor showing in this drill. He was moved around the defensive line and ended up playing all four of the 4-3 defensive line positions by the end of the drill. Unfortunately he failed to make any great plays. The Florida State product was consistently beaten by nearly every offensive lineman he faced. The worst rep ended in Dawkins face down in the ground after being destroyed by Florida offensive tackle Xavier Nixon.

California center Brian Schwenke had a good session of one-on-ones. He showed the ability to bend and hold off some of the best interior defensive lineman in the country. He held his own against the mammoth John Jenkins of Georgia. Schwenke was beaten by Jenkins on a spin move, but it’s nearly impossible and unrealistic to expect any center to block Jenkins one-on-one. Jenkins strength is out of this world and it caught the attention Jets head coach Rex Ryan, who was giddy with excitement after seeing Jenkins knock down one of the South centers.

Next up the linebackers and running backs went up against each other and worked on pass protection. First up was Wake Forest fullback Tommy Bohanon, who won against Florida State linebacker Vince Williams. Stanford running back Stephan Taylor won on Texas A&M linebacker Sean Porter and then Florida running back Mike Gillislee won against Missouri linebacker Zaviar Gooden. The linebackers got their revenge, however, when Alabama’s Nico Johnson beat Gillislee with a great inside spin move to get to the quarterback.

The South team linebackers and running backs then faced each other in a coverage drill. Taylor dominated Williams in this drill and broke off his contact to catch the ball with five yards of separation. Williams got back at Taylor a few plays later and completely stoned the Stanford product at the line of scrimmage for a big win.

The biggest running back wins in this drill came from Gillislee and Taylor who easily escaped to the outside against Porter and Stanford linebacker Chase Thomas, respectively, for about 10 yards of separation.

The receivers and defensive back seven faced off next during five-on-sevens. Tennessee tight end Mychal Rivera started the drill off by going up and making a spectacular catch on a Tyler Wilson throw against two defenders down the middle of the field. Arkansas’ Wilson then hit Bohanon on a flat route and the Wake Forest product was able to take the ball up the sideline due to a bad angle by Marc Anthony on the play.

Anthony redeemed himself on the next play, however, and picked off Oklahoma’s Landry Jones by making a great break on a on the ball and catching it at its highest point. FSU quarterback E.J. Manuel was the most inconsistent quarterback during this drill and missed on several receivers in tight coverage.

The wide receivers and defensive backs got back together for an individual portion of practice and worked on a receiver blocking drill while defensive backs tried to get off their blocks. Southeastern La.’s Robert Alford struggled the most in this drill and was easily pushed back by Arkansas wide receiver Cobi Hamilton on both of his reps. The team worked on fielding punts next and Alford wasn’t able to redeem himself in this department either as he dropped the first punt of the day.

The last portion of practice featured 11-on-11’s per usual. While BYU’s Ezekial Ansah didn’t have a great showing during the one-on-one sessions, but he made up for it with an outstanding performance during the scrimmage period. The BYU product tipped a pass thrown by E.J. Manuel, which was eventually picked off by Missouri outside linebacker Zavier Gooden. It was a high-effort play from Ansah, as he didn’t initially make an impact on the play.

That wasn’t Gooden’s only good play of the 11-on-11 session. The Missouri linebacker made a huge hit on an attempted run by Mike Gillislee. The play was a stretch run to the left side and Gooden read the play correctly, allowing him to knife into the back field and rock Gillislee for a loss. Gooden wasn’t blocked on the play, but he showed great instincts on the play.

The best ball-carrier at Wednesday’s practice was Florida’s Mike Gillislee. He was very good in pass-protection and he was also impressive as a receiver out of the backfield.

Gillislee had a huge pass-protection blitz pickup on Florida State defensive tackle Everett Dawkins. The Gator running back stoned his Florida State rival, who is much larger that he is. The senior running back showed good lower body strength and footwork as a blocker, which is something that scouts will absolutely love.

The former Gator also recorded a carry for a big gain, which came on an outside stretch run where he outran the defensive end to the edge and turned up field for about a 20-yard gain. Gillislee was hit very hard as he ran out of bounds on the play, but he showed good toughness by shaking of the dinger and returning to the huddle on the next play.

Gillislee is really helping his draft stock this week and he looks like a running back that will end up going in the third round of the draft.

Offensive tackle Lane Johnson laid a nice block on LSU defensive end Lavar Edwards on a draw play to Stanford running back Stepfan Taylor. Johnson gave Taylor just enough time to get past the defensive end and sprint upfield for a nice gain. Edwards consistently was destroyed throughout the day and didn’t prove to be a very effective pass rusher.

Clemson’s Malliciah Goodman, on the other hand, rushed the passer well on Wednesday and would have gotten a sack Jones for a big loss on a roll out on one play.

The South team finished practice by going over some special teams plays before their full special teams practice on Thursday afternoon. The team will finish their week of practice on Friday with a walk-through before Saturday’s big game, which Pewter Report will be analyzing to wrap up the 2013 Senior Bowl week.

Pewter Report's 2013 Senior Bowl coverage is sponsored by The Theater Doctor. For nearly a decade, The Theater Doctor has been installing, repairing and trouble-shooting home theater systems all around Tampa Bay. With the Senior Bowl, Pro Bowl, Super Bowl and March Madness coming up in the next few weeks, it’s time to make sure you are ready to watch the big games the way they were meant to be viewed – on a big screen TV with a surround sound system. 

Call The Theater Doctor today to schedule an in-home consultation at (813) 929-6816, e-mail them at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , visit them on the web at TheTheaterDoctor.com or click on one of the multiple Theater Doctor banner ads on PewterReport.com for more information.

- Eric Dellaratta and Andrew Scavelli contributed to this report

Last modified on Thursday, 24 January 2013 10:15

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  • avatar

    Didn't Gruden and Keyshawn win a Super Bowl?
  • avatar

    Good grief. So I guess Revis is the flavour of this offseason. Every year, fans want to mortgage the future to pry a veteran to be our saviour. This is how teams get in trouble with the cap and loss of draft picks / elite young talent (see trades for Gruden / Keshawn). Please don't trade a 1st for a head case corner coming off major knee surgery. Draft a corner and sign a reasonable vet FA.
  • avatar

    I'd say no to Revis. Not only is he coming off an ACL, just about every summer he wants to hold out for more money. Revis wants to be the highest paid player in the league. He certainly hasn't taken the Jets to any great heights the last few years.
  • avatar

    He's on a team that's a mess, Revis certainly could help the Bucs greatly, I do think he wants too much money but the Bucs do have the cap space to pull him in.
  • avatar

    I've read about Revis as well. Is there any way for any of you at Pewter report to find out whether the Bucs are considering trading for him? I understand the Revis is expensive and wants a lot of money and the Jets would probably want a 1st round pick but at the same time he tore his ACL this year so maybe we could get him for a 2nd possibly. We would then have a pretty good secondary considering he covers half the field and doesn't need any Safety help for the most part. It is a bit risky considering he is coming off a torn ACL but the reward could be greater.
  • avatar

    DING DING DING! Just read the Jets are exploring trade options for CB D. Revis. If I am GM I'd put some serious thought into this and also offer Rodgers-Cromartie. The addition of these two could solidify the secondary by 99%. The Bucs could make themselves legitimate contenders with these two additions not to mention what they can get out of the draft. I think the cap space is there. Please pull the trigger!
  • avatar

    I told you about ej manuel ,he's to inconsistent plays just like freeman when we were on our losing streak ,even when he plays good he still sucks !!
  • avatar

    nice article guys - thanks
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