The 2023 Reese’s Senior Bowl is upon us, and this afternoon many of the top senior prospects in the 2023 NFL Draft will take the field. The New York Giants have plenty of holes to fill, and we know they have been scouting the Senior Bowl heavily.
The game itself is the culmination of a week of practices that allow scouts, coaches, and GMs to get up close and personal with some of the top prospects in the upcoming draft. For scouts and GMs, this is a chance to get a look at prospects in new surroundings, taking NFL coaching, and against unfamiliar opponents. For coaches, this is their first chance to see these players in person.
This is a great chance for players from smaller schools to show that they belong with prospects haling from powerhouse football factories. Likewise, it’s an opportunity for big school players who were overshadowed at their programs to step into the limelight.
Also of note for Giants fans, if you want a rooting interest, former defensive coordinator Patrick Graham will be the head coach for the National Team.
How to watch
Game time: 2:30 p.m. ET
TV: NFL Network, NFL Network Live (streaming with cable or satellite provider information), FuboTV (streaming)
Broadcast crew: Andrew Siciliano (play-by-play), Daniel Jeremiah, Charles Davis (draft analysis), Tom Pelissero (sideline reporting)
Players to watch
This year’s Senior Bowl roster is littered with future Top 100 or even Top 50 prospects. This is one of those games where my best advice is to watch and take note of which players jump out. I’m going to be limiting my highlights here to positions and players that might interest the Giants the most.
Cody Mauch (OL/OC, North Dakota State)
Mauch played left tackle for NDSU’s dominant offensive line, but was asked to practice at guard and center by the NFL after his arms measured just 32 and 1/8 inches. He took to the positions well and was voted the OL Practice Player-of-the-Week by the National Team defensive linemen and linebackers.
And frankly: Just look at him and tell me you don’t want this dude on your offensive line.
Trey Palmer (WR, Nebraska)
Palmer made waves as one of the fastest players on the property in practice. The NFL is constantly on the lookout for speedsters who can stress defenses vertically, and Palmer is certainly that, having set the Louisiana high school state record in the 200m dash and topping out at 21.15 mph in practice. He has solid size at 6-foot, 193 pounds, so he isn’t undersized either.
Kyu Blu Kelly (CB, Stanford)
Kelly reportedly had a fantastic week of practice for the National Team and he might be one of the best corners in the upcoming draft. Kelly has good size at 6-foot, 193 and was only targeted 25 times in all of 2022. He also has an NFL pedigree (his father, Brian Kelly, played CB for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers from 1998 to 2007).
Andre Carter II (EDGE, Army)
Carter is one of the more intriguing players in the draft. He has all the tools to get scouts and coaches excited: He’s 6-foot-6, 250 pounds with 34-inch arms, and plenty of athleticism. He also lead college football in sacks-per-game in 2021, and finished with 17 tackles for a loss to go with 15.5 sacks. A recent change to the law allows Carter (and other service academy prospects like him) to play professional sports immediately, rather than after two years of active duty service. Carter could hear his name called before the end of the second round.
Isaiah Foskey (EDGE, Notre Dame)
This year’s senior Bowl roster has several really good pass rushers, and Foskey might be the first to hear his name called in the draft. He has NFL caliber tools at 6-foot-4, 260 pounds with 33 3⁄4 inch arms, the athleticism to be a pass rushing EDGE, and enough play strength to be a hand-in-the-dirt defensive end.
Daiyan Henley (LB, Washington State)
Henley was Daniel Jeremiah’s pick for stand-out linebacker from the week of practice. Henley hasn’t received much buzz at the national level, but that could change after a performance that earned praise from Jeremiah for his ability to run and play in space.
O’Cyrus Torrence (G, Florida)
Torrence has been praised as (arguably) the best player on either team at any position over the week of practice. He is an absolutely massive man at 6-foot-5, 337 pounds, with 34-inch arms and 11 1⁄4 inch hands. He is an absolute mauler of a run blocker and has solid technique and feet in pass protection. Torrence gave defensive linemen fits all week long.
John Michael Schmitz (OC, Minnesota)
Speaking of tough, strong linemen who gave defenders fits, Schmitz is going to be one of the first centers drafted in April. He and Torrence had several great reps side-by-side in practice and already look like seasoned teammates. The Giants obviously need to add explosive playmakers to their offense, but they could also do a lot worse than adding these two to their offensive line.
Luke Musgrave (TE, Oregon State)
The National team might have the fastest wide receiver on the property, but the American team wins the Speed Score (a rating that seeks to take both raw speed and player size into account). Musgrave was one of the top 10 fastest players in Senior Bowl practices, with his 20.05 mph on the radar gun coming in at eighth fastest among all players. That’s impressive, but the fact that he is that fast at 6-foot-5, 255 pounds is nuts. Combined with his 35 5/8 inch arms and 10 1⁄2 inch hands, he might have the highest ceiling of any tight end in the class.
Tyjae Spears (RB, Tulane)
Spears is one of the small school players who has used this opportunity to raise his draft profile. Spears has, frankly, attached a rocket to his draft stock since September. Not only did he show he belongs with the big school prospects, he did so after a break-out season that saw him average 6.9 yards per carry and score 21 touchdowns.
Spears has earned a spot on pretty much everyone’s “best performer’s” list from the week of practice, and I personally loved watching his tape. He reminds me of David Wilson coming out of Virginia Tech.
Julius Brents (CB, Kansas State)
We know the Giants were very interested in Sauce Gardner a year ago, and they probably should have jumped on drafting 2022 Senior Bowl stand-out Tariq Woolen a year ago. Brents offers similar physical tools at 6-foot-3, 202 pounds, and 33 3⁄4 inch arms. He also, reportedly, impressed with his speed and fluidity in coverage. The Giants would do well to find another starting caliber corner considering Adoree Jackson’s injury history, and Brents could certainly appeal.
Will McDonald IV (EDGE, Iowa State)
Yet another good pass rusher in this game, Will McDonald IV might be the most explosive. He’s electric off the line of scrimmage, can bend, has natural leverage at 6-foot-3, and freakishly long 35-inch arms. He’s a bit undersized at 241 pounds, at least compared to the historic archetype, but players like Haason Reddick and Micah Parsons have proven that undersized pass rushers absolutely have a place in the modern NFL.