The 2014 East/West Shrine Game hosts the second tier of senior NFL draft prospects. The Seniors who didn’t get the invite to the Senior Bowl. Before you quickly dismiss “Senior Bowl Jr’ as some meaningless, irrelevant game, keep in mind current NFL players; Michael Bennett, Jordan Cameron, Dannell Ellerbe, Cecil Shorts, Julius Thomas and Sebastian Vollmer all played in the annual St Petersburg Classic. Here are a few prospects that I’ll be keeping an eye out on during the game.
1.) Jeremy Gallon WR, Michigan
At 5’7″ 183, The shortest player in the Shrine Game, Michigan’s WR Jeremy Gallon has tons to prove. His size didn’t prevent him from breaking Michigan’s single-season receiving yardage mark as a senior this past season. Gallon has been working as a slot receiver during Shrine practice this week, a position I can see him excelling at in the NFL.
2.) Jimmy Garoppolo, QB, Eastern Illinois
One of the most talked about participants of the East/West game is Eastern Illinois signal caller Jimmy Garoppolo. Garoppolo led all Division I players in passing yards with 5,050 and TD passes with 53 dimes. His stock has risen since the end of the season and with a solid showing here in the Shrine Game I believe he can catapult himself even higher than any of us imagined prior to the season ending.
3.) Jordan Lynch, QB, Northern Illinois
Heisman Finalist Jordan Lynch undoubtedly has the most to prove out of all the Shrine Game participants this year. Lynch’s rushing totals (1,920 yards and 23 touchdowns) are certain to gauge the interest scouts but I don’t think you can look past his production as a passer. Lynch completed 62.6% of his passes in 2013 for 2,892 yards and three times as many touchdowns (24) as interceptions (8).
There is not only doubt that he can play the QB position effectively on the Pro level but there’s uncertainty as to what position he CAN play if he is to make the position switch on the next level. The scouts this week have been focusing on his arm as they already know he’s an elite runner. That’s what will be the center of focus when he plays in the actually game. Lynch will be looking to prove the doubters wrong as he looks to solidify his ability as a legit dual threat QB.
4.) Max Bullough, LB, Michigan State
Michigan State Linebacker Max Bullough was suspended for the Rose Bowl so he didn’t really get to add to his NFL Draft stock, he’ll get that chance in this weekend’s East/West Shrine Game. Tough, fast, great acceleration, a tackling machine. He’s what you want in a LB and I fully expect him to be all over the field during the game.
5.) Pierre Desir, CB, Lindenwood
6.) Allen Hurns, WR Miami
7.) Rajion Neal, RB, Tennessee
8.) DeMonte McAllister, DL, Florida State
9.) Keith Price, QB Washington