MOBILE, Ala. --** The weather turned cold and windy as the second day of Senior Bowl practiced dawned for the players on hand. The wind posed a challenge for the quarterbacks on hand and most struggled to defeat the elements. In the end, Tuesday was another day where the prospects on the defensive side of the ball stood out.
Jordan Zumwalt/LB/UCLA: We mentioned Chris Borland as one of the better linebackers from Monday's practice. Today it was Zumwalt's turn to impress scouts and the UCLA linebacker was the most impressive defender on the field. From the beginning, Zumwalt was dominant, showing great force in pass-rush drills, speed and quickness defending the run as well as the ability to get outside the box in pursuit. Throughout, Zumwalt, 6-foot-4, 231, played with nonstop intensity, so much so that coaches politely asked him to dial it down a bit. Zumwalt presented himself as second-round material, something which could come to fruition if the competitive linebacker turns in good workouts at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Christian Kirksey/OLB/Iowa: Kirksey was another linebacker who approached Tuesday's practice with a fire in his belly. He showed even better speed compared to Zumwalt and the ability to chase down ball handlers in pursuit. His ability to make plays in space was impressive and Kirksey, 6-foot-2, 234, drew a rise from scouts on one play after chasing down running back David Fluellen in space and stopping the ball carrier dead in his tracks. He's a three-down defender who really improved his draft stock on Tuesday.
Marqueston Huff/DB/Wyoming: Huff is another one of the very versatile defensive backs on hand at the Senior Bowl and proved as much on Tuesday. After lining up at the safety position last season for Wyoming, Huff primarily saw action at cornerback on Tuesday and impressed throughout. At 5-foot-11, 198, he's a bigger defensive back who plays a physical brand of football and showed the ability to stay downfield with receivers while also making plays on the ball in coverage. In addition to his defensive skills, Huff is also considered a core special teams prospect who's done a very good job on coverage units.
Dee Ford/DE/Auburn: Ford was a pass-rushing menace on Tuesday who embarrassed anyone who tried to stop him on his path to the quarterback. He displayed a tremendous burst off the snap and the ability to quickly close to the quarterback while playing with both balance and body control from start to finish. Ford showed incredible speed and was also efficient in all his actions. One disappointing aspect of the day was the fact Ford strictly lined up in a three-point stance. At 6-foot-2, 243, Ford was never used at outside linebacker, the position he would play for the Eagles. Regardless, he proved his pass-rushing prowess on Tuesday and that will go a long way in boosting Ford's draft stock.
Brandon Thomas/T/Clemson: Entering Senior Bowl week, the opinions on Thomas from scouts were rather unanimous; Thomas was a college left tackle who projected to guard in the NFL. Not so fast. On Tuesday, the big lineman displayed tremendous pass-protecting skills and had no problem shutting down rushers, both those who tried to overpower him on the inside and those who attempted to beat Thomas with speed around the corner. He's a strong blocker with long arms, which he effectively used to knock defenders from the play. Tuesday was a big win for Thomas, who now has NFL scouts thinking he may have the makeup to stay at left tackle.
Antonio Andrews/RB/Western Kentucky: There's been no single standout at running back during the initial two days of Senior Bowl practice yet Andrews has shown himself to be the most complete player at the position. The versatile ball carrier stood out in blocking drills, caught the ball well and also ran strong on the inside. Andrews projects primarily as a third-down back at the next level and the ability to do the little things well on Tuesday was impressive.
Mike Davis/WR/Texas: Davis has turned in a pair of productive practices and showed an array of skill both days. He comes with excellent size, reliable hands and offers a smooth style. Davis showed the ability to separate from defenders off the line of scrimmage then fought hard to come away with the reception. He's shown the skill set to line up as a second receiver in the NFL and moves towards the final day of Senior Bowl practice with a higher grade than before his arrival in Mobile.
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