NFL Draft 2013: Senior Bowl Prospects Part 2


The scouting season officially kicks off at 3pm EST this Saturday January 26th with the Senior Bowl in Mobile, AL. CSR College Scouting Enthusiast Derek Leaser is running three part series highlighting the players to watch from a Panther point of view. This is part 2. Let's take a look at three defensive tackles that the Panthers should heavily consider if they are still on the board in the second round this April.

DT Kawann Short 6' 3" 308 lbs Purdue

-2012 1st Team All-Big Ten

-Excellent first step

-Conditioning, motor issues

-Extremely strong, and difficult to move off the line of scrimmage

-Sheds blockers effectively

-Shoots the gap well to make plays in the backfield

-Doesn't keep his pad level low enough at times

-Versatile player who can play NT, DT, and DE

-Possesses nice length

-Above-average run defender

When you look at Short's four year career statistics while at Purdue, you can't help but come away impressed, and I feel the same about his game film. Sure, he's had some motor issues, but that particular problem has seen some improvement over the years, and I don't expect that to be a major downfall of his moving forward. With that being said, It doesn't surprise at all that he's stood out so far this week in Mobile, Alabama at the Senior Bowl practices.

Short has the combination of size and quickness that allows him to make game changing plays against the run and pass. From my limited viewpoint, I believe it will be awfully difficult for the Panthers to pass on Short should he still be available in the second round, provided they pass on a DT in the first round. The odds of using an early round pick to select a DT of his caliber will only go up if they choose not to re-sign Dwan Edwards before the draft.

Season Solo Assists Total TFL Sacks PBU QB Hurries FF INT Blocked Kicks
2009 30 17 47 4 0 1 0 0 2 0
2010 30 11 41 12.5 4.5 8 0 0 0 2
2011 29 25 54 17.5 6.5 2 0 1 0 1
2012 35 8 43 15.5 7 4 0 1 0 4

DT/DE Datone Jones 6' 4" 280 lbs UCLA

-2012 2nd Team All-Pac 12

-Scheme Versatile

-High Motor

-Extremely strong

-Sheds blockers exceptionally well

-Elite quickness off the line of scrimmage

-Possesses an outstanding rip move

-Tweener who is a disruptive force at DT or DE

Jones is another defensive lineman that has stood out at the Senior Bowl so far this week. When you look at his game film, it's easy to come away without a clear idea of whether he will play defensive end or defensive tackle at the next level. The answer to that conundrum is simple. He has the unique ability to play both. In fact, UCLA lined him up at every position along the defensive line, and rightly so.

Jones' athleticism and flexibility was even further exhibited this past season when he caught a touchdown pass in a goal line situation. The truth of the matter is that he was a force to be reckoned with regardless of where he played, and that type of versatility already has a plethora of teams salivating to get their hands on him.

From my standpoint, Jones looks to have the same skill-set as our very own Greg Hardy: Too quick for guards to stay in front of him, and too strong for a single offensive tackle to handle him. Can you imagine having another relentless, non-stop motor running alongside Hardy on passing downs, and the potential flexibility to interchange them at will? If so, then you might agree with me that Jones would be another prospect too good to pass up in the second round.

Season Solo Assists Total TFL Sacks PBU QB Hurries FF INT Blocked Kicks
2009 12 18 30 11 4 3 1 2 0 0
2010 N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A N/A
2011 23 18 41 6.5 3 2 0 0 0 0
2012 45 17 62 19 6.5 0 2 2 0 2

DT Sylvester Williams 6' 2" 313 lbs North Carolina

-2012 1st Team All-ACC

-Exceptional burst and penetration

-Powerful upper body strength

-Displays violent hands

-High Motor

-Impressive usage of swim, rip, and spin moves

-Technical ability lacking a bit

-Pad level too high at times

-Adequate when facing double teams

-Average run defender

-Solid bull rush, but doesn't use it to his advantage enough

Teammates will tell you that Williams was the first guy in the building to work out while at UNC, but that hard-working approach wasn't always present on or off the field. Frankly, he never cared a great deal for the academic requirements in high school, and was unable to stay on the football field as a result. Williams did, however, manage to graduate, and soon after, at the ripe old age of 19, began working at a manufacturing plant that made radiator parts for large trucks. As the days slowly dragged by and his weight kept climbing, football continued to call.

Everything changed the day Williams decided to go see his friend, who was a freshman on the Kansas football team at the time, playing against Texas Tech. After the game, he went down to see his friend, and couldn't help but notice that the players compared favorably to his stature. Williams had always thought those athletes looked bigger on television. With this new found sense of belonging, he decided to pursue football once again.

When he arrived as a walk-on at Coffeyville Community College(KS), he was 370 lbs, but it didn't take long for this now motivated physical specimen to slim down enough to compete for a starting position. Surprisingly, Williams beat out some former major division I recruits to earn the starting position. Long story short, Williams impressed enough on and off the field to earn(wasn't implicated in academic scandal) a scholarship at UNC, where he starred for the past two seasons.

Scouting the Senior Bowl - Part 1

At 24, Williams represents a greater risk because his game is still a bit raw, despite his advanced age. But the truth of the matter is this: His potential is still very high, and he has continued to show as much at the Senior Bowl practices. Williams is another defensive tackle who, much like Short and Jones, has consistently displayed the ability to wreak havoc in the backfield. Because of this, he may also be in play as a second round pick for the Panthers, and I certainly wouldn't be opposed.

What about you CSR? Which of these players do you like the most? After you watch this final video, be sure to let everyone know where you stand in the poll and the comment section that follows.

Season Solo Assists Total TFL Sacks PBU QB Hurries FF INT Blocked Kicks
2011 23 31 54 7 2.5 3 5 1 1 0
2012 21 21 42 13.5 6 0 6 0 0 0

Stay tuned for part 3 tomorrow and as always join our in-game open thread on Saturday.


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