Senior Bowl Wrap: Five Names To Know
We’re back in Philadelphia after a week down in Mobile, Ala. at the Senior Bowl.
Below is a wrap-up piece with five names to know from an Eagles perspective.
Ameer Abdullah, RB, Nebraska (5-8, 198)
If you paid any attention to college football over the past few seasons, you know about Abdullah. He piled up 1,611 yards and 19 touchdowns, while averaging 6.1 YPC last season. Abdullah had 1,690 yards in 2013 and 1,137 in 2012. He’s been one of the most productive backs in the country.
Abdullah also had 72 catches in the past three seasons, and it’s unlikely any player in this year’s class will have a higher #culture rating.
Asked about whether he regretted not coming out as a junior, Abdullah said: “No, because what it’s about is getting my degree. I plan to go to law school when it’s all said and done, and I needed to take care of my undergrad before I do that. I would have been the only person in my family not to get my degree. Definitely didn’t want to break that trend after nine children. That’s what it was about for me. It wasn’t about coming out when the money was right or when you’re hot, because if it’s in God’s plan, it’s gonna happen. So I have no regrets about that.
“My Mother’s an educator. My sister is about to graduate pharmacy school. My older brother’s an attorney. I had a sister graduate from law school a couple years ago, a sister that works for CNN. So I’m definitely the failure of the family. I’m just trying to keep my head above the water really.”
Abdullah is going to crush it in interviews and has impressive tape/production. He’s not tall, but he’s rocked up.
This is considered a loaded class of running backs, and from an Eagles perspective, there will be a lot to like about Abdullah.
Kurtis Drummond, S, Michigan State (6-1, 205)
He started 34 consecutive games at safety for the Spartans and was named the Big Ten’s Defensive Back of the Year last season. Drummond had 12 interceptions and 14 tackles for loss. He was a co-captain as a senior and earned his degree in psychology.
The Eagles want their safeties to be able to be able to come down and play man coverage against the slot, something Drummond has shown he’s capable of on film.
“I covered the slot a lot,” he said. “Very aggressive. Corners up in your face. Safeties on an island just as much as the corners most of the time. I feel it really helped prepare me for the next level.”
Drummond will have to show he has the range to play center field in single-high looks at the NFL level. But given his cover skills, he’s a player to watch.
Nate Orchard, OLB, Utah (6-3, 251)
He was a three-year starter and came on strong as a senior, piling up 18.5 sacks, second in the nation. Orchard played in a 4-3, but he said Utah also employed a 3-4 package, and he was asked to drop into coverage.
“I think a lot of scouts out here want to see me drop into coverage and see how my hips are, if I’ve got good hips and if I’m able to guard tight ends and drop into coverage,” he said.
Orchard prefers defensive end, but given his weight, he’ll get plenty of looks at outside linebacker. On one play during the week, he read a screen, got his hands on the ball and came down with the interception.
Orchard had 38.5 tackles for loss, eight forced fumbles and 10 pass break-ups during his college career. In Mobile, he had a meeting with the Eagles.
“It was good. Chip Kelly was there. It felt intense,” he said. “But got a lot out of it.”
Why was it intense?
“It’s Chip Kelly, c’mon. He’s the head coach of the Eagles. His presence.”
Stephone Anthony, ILB, Clemson (6-2, 245)
He won the award for the best linebacker during Senior Bowl practices. Anthony was active all week long, has good size and was a productive college player.
Possibly the most underrated linebacker in the upcoming draft, Anthony, 6-2, 245, turned in a complete performance on Tuesday. He did exceptionally well in coverage drills, which he carried over into the scrimmage period. Anthony got depth on pass drops and easily stayed step-for-step with running backs or tight ends who came over the middle of the field. He also showed speed and range in pursuit, quickly getting outside the numbers then cutting off the corners as he ran down ball carriers.
Anthony led Clemson with 90 tackles last season. He also had 2.5 sacks and 11 QB pressures.
Bryan Bennett, QB, SE Louisiana State (6-2, 210)
We wrote about him in-depth during the week. Given Kelly’s preference for familiarity, Bennett could be someone who interests the Eagles on Day 3 or as an undrafted free agent.
He’s far from a finished product, but given that the team has yet to see much from Matt Barkley, adding a developmental prospect like Bennett could make sense.