The second practice of the Reese’s Senior Bowl was wet, rainy, dank, and uncomfortable, but the event persisted through the elements, and there are plenty of takeaways.
With Joe Schoen and the Giants scouting staff in attendance, Boston College interior offensive lineman Zion Johnson continues to make a strong case for his NFL future.
Boston College's IOL Zion Johnson could be available for the Giants in the early 2nd round— Nick Falato (@nickfalato) February 2, 2022
He didn't win every rep in 1v1, but his ability to strike, readjust, sink his hips/mirror, and anchor with quality grip strength is impressive.
Also appreciate how loose his hips are. pic.twitter.com/0DotjFJdhU
These are clips from the first practice where Johnson continued to prove his worth to NFL evaluators.
Zion Johnson’s measurements
Arm Length: 33 7/8″
Wingspan: 82 7/8″
Hand: 10 7/8″
He also caught the eye of the Reese’s Senior Bowl Director, Jim Nagy:
Boston College OL Zion Johnson, the top graded guard in the draft, staying after @seniorbowl practice working on his center skills. This is what NFL scouts are looking for.#TheDraftStartsInMOBILE™️ #BestoftheBest pic.twitter.com/d5j1YiH3in— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) February 2, 2022
Johnson was one of the only players to slow down UCONN’s Travis Jones. The 6’4, 326-pound defensive lineman was displaying his excellent strength/push at the point of attack, while also showing the quickness to penetrate - he’s not just a space-eater.
He’s putting all 34-inch of his length to use. As good as Johnson was at the event, Jones got the best of him in a one-on-one on day one.
Jones caught Johnson leaning with his feet wide, and aggressive shed the block to win the rep. Johnson also bested Jones in a bull-rushing situation (although the push was solid), and Johnson did well against Jones in team-period. Both players are exciting prospects.
Another defensive lineman on the National team who flashed big time was Oklahoma’s Perrion Winfrey. He, too, has push, pop, quickness, plays with excellent leverage, and gave Zion Johnson fits in a one-on-one situation.
.@OU_Football DL Perrion Winfrey is having DAY at @seniorbowl.— Trevor Sikkema (@TampaBayTre) February 2, 2022
Absolutely worked Zion Johnson here, who has been one of the top IOL guys this week. Winfrey’s effort has been awesome. He’s locked in with good results pic.twitter.com/2Tx1l3B8fT
Perrion Winfrey has lightning quickness pic.twitter.com/LUnLxedpXZ— Billy M (@BillyM_91) February 2, 2022
He was also very difficult to block in team drills.
It is worth noting that UCLA DT Otito Ogbonnia had a phenomenal first practice, showing an excellent bull-rush move. His strength and leverage were very difficult for offensive linemen to handle.
Also, EDGE/DL Logan Hall receives a ton of buzz from draft pundits. His size/burst and disruptiveness are evident, but he’s also technically sound with how he employs pass-rushing moves.
Cincinnati EDGE Myjai Sanders really gave Minnesota tackle Daniel Faalele a problem in practice one.
EDGE Myjai Sanders (CIN) vs OT Daniel Faalele (MIN)— Nick Falato (@nickfalato) February 2, 2022
Both are options for the Giants (2nd rd)
☑️ Combo of moves
❌ Can he hold up vs run
☑️ Gigantic (6'8, 387)
☑️ 35+ inch arms
☑️ Power for days
❌ Can he play OT in NFL? pic.twitter.com/QkPKugBYQs
Faalele hasn’t looked great at tackle. His power and strength are undeniable, but the slower feet will be an issue against speeder rushers like Sanders. Get Faalele moving with a head of steam, though, and look out!
Sanders made a big splash play to debunk his concerns about playing the run on practice two (near camera).
Cincinnati DE Myjai Sanders making his presence known out here pic.twitter.com/hrNhhKielm— 4th and JAWN (@4thandJawn) February 2, 2022
One of my favorite players down in Mobile is Baylor defensive back Jalen Pitre.
Jalen Pitre just makes everything look so easy pic.twitter.com/lERqQEXpdy— Mike Renner (@PFF_Mike) February 2, 2022
He’s a good nickel-back who is smart, has the necessary coverage skills (man or zone), and he’s aggressively dynamic in run support. He’s a physical player that can blitz, and he always seems to be around the football; I wish he was a bit bigger, 5-foot-10, 20 7/8-inch arms. His role is destined as a nickel who can play near the box in passing situations.
Cincinnati cornerback Coby Bryant showed excellent patience in a press rep during the first practice, and he followed that performance up with a solid outing in practice two.
Romeo Doubs vs Coby Bryant pic.twitter.com/4RKveydaCh— The 33rd Team (@The33rdTeamFB) February 2, 2022
A lot of people with boots on the deck claim that NDSU WR Christian Watson had two consecutive solid practices. Nevada quarterback Carson Strong and Watson connected on a deep vertical in the rain here:
Both tight ends Trey McBride (Colorado State) and Jeremy Ruckert (Ohio State) are having great Senior Bowl practices. McBride led the nation in receiving from the tight end position and is one of the favorites to be the first tight end selected. However, Ruckert is a sneaky contender to earn that honor, due to his incredible blocking prowess. Ruckert’s receiving statistics in college weren’t eye-popping because he played alongside WRs Garrett Wilson and Chris Olave - two possibly first-round picks. I would not be shocked to see Ruckert go on Day 2; I absolutely loved his film. Here is one Ruckert play from today’s practice, and one from Tuesday’s practice.
Jeremy Ruckert— Derek Brown (@DBro_FFB) February 2, 2022
My spider sense continues to tingle pic.twitter.com/9fZ5d9qj2X
As for the quarterbacks ...
Desmond Ridder has thrown the furthest pass by air distance, 62.5 yards on a deep route down the sideline to Bo Melton. The pass was also the highest initial spin rate recorded on a pass in the National practice today - 673.9 RPM. @ZebraTechnology #TheDraftStartsInMOBILE™️ pic.twitter.com/RDcIVQo2vX— Reese's Senior Bowl (@seniorbowl) February 2, 2022
Pitt quarterback Kenny Pickett had mixed reviews. He connected with McBride on a great pass up the seam, but his presumed small hands were a topic of conversation in the rainy weather.
Kenny Pickett fumbling and throwing a wobbler on back-to-back plays in the rain isn’t gonna help make the hand size narrative slow down anytime soon— Mike Renner (@PFF_Mike) February 2, 2022
Nevada quarterback Carson Strong medicals have to check out with his leg, but people were raving about his deep ball and ability to push the football vertically.
This is routes on air, but the distance alone is impressive.
The Reese’s Senior Bowl has one more practice on Thursday before the Saturday game that starts at 2:30 p.m. ET at Hancock Whitney Stadium in Mobile.