NFL Analysis


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2024 Senior Bowl: Stock Up, Stock Down at Day 1 Practices

A general view of the field at the Reese's Senior Bowl.
Mobile, Ala.; A general view of the field at the Reese's Senior Bowl. (Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports)

The Senior Bowl has officially kicked off in Mobile, Ala. with the first practice of the week in the books. 

While players were just in pads and shorts on Tuesday, it wasn't hard to find some clear-cut winners and losers. Here are the players who saw their stock rise the most and those who watched their stock drop.

>>READ: 2024 Senior Bowl Weigh-Ins and Measurements

Stock Up: Tyler Guyton, OT, Oklahoma

Oklahoma’s Tyler Guyton is one of the top offensive linemen in Mobile.  He has played more than 1,000 snaps at right tackle in the Big 12, and his experience showed.

He won nearly every 1-on-1 drill on Tuesday and showed incredible athleticism and power.

His technique still needs considerable work, but all the tools are there. The edge rushers at the Senior Bowl had zero success going around him.

There is a good chance Guyton could be the first Senior Bowl participant drafted, as NFL teams are always searching for offensive line help. With his size (6-foot-7, 327 pounds), don't be surprised if he is selected much earlier than expected.

Aug 31, 2023; East Hartford, Connecticut, USA; North Carolina State Wolfpack linebacker Payton Wilson (11) reacts after intercepting a pass against the UConn Huskies in the last seconds of play of the game at Rentschler Field at Pratt & Whitney Stadium. Mandatory Credit: David Butler II-USA TODAY Sports

Stock Down: Payton Wilson, LB, North Carolina State

It’s hard to call a linebacker a “loser” in a practice where tackling wasn’t allowed, but Wilson has not had a great start to the week. 

For starters, his arm length came in at 30 1/8 inches. That is in the first percentile among all off-ball linebackers since 1999. According to Mock Draftable, only three other linebackers have had shorter arms, and none were drafted higher than the third round.

Wilson has unbelievable tape, but the number of surgeries he’s had is in the double-digits, and he struggled in Mobile on Tuesday. It's only the first practice, but he failed to stand out in team drills. Wilson was on the ground on several different plays and did not make much of an impact.

Stock Up: Ladd McConkey, WR, Georgia

The Senior Bowl was built for players like Ladd McConkey. Arguably the best route runner in the 2024 draft, McConkey cooked every defensive back he faced on Tuesday.

It's not a huge surprise, as the 1-on-1 drills heavily favor the offense, but no defender was ever close to stopping him. His quickness in and out of his breaks is incredible, and he has a plan on every route.

McConkey is widely viewed as a top-50 player, but his stock is rising after Tuesday's showing. He was easily the best receiver at practice, and it would be a mild shock if any defender stopped him during the week.

Look for him to continue shining during practices and get some late first-round buzz coming of the week.

Sep 2, 2023; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; South Carolina Gamecocks wide receiver Xavier Legette (17) runs for yards after catch defended by North Carolina Tar Heels defensive back Don Chapman (2) during the second half at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Stock Down: Xavier Legette, WR, South Carolina

Another weigh-in loser from this week was Xavier Legette, who was listed as 6-foot-3 at South Carolina. He measured in at 6-foot-1 flat.

They also measured his hands below 9 inches, which is concerning for a player whose game is based on winning contested passes. It's rare to see a "big" receiver have small hands. Legette’s arm length (31 5/8 inches) is slightly below average (40th percentile).

Legette did not have a strong day in practice either on Tuesday. He had four reps in 1-on-1 drills and failed to catch a single pass. All four routes were go-balls, and he could not separate from the defender. In fairness to Legette, none of the four passes were on target, but the lack of separation was noticeable. There just wasn’t a lot of urgency in his routes, and his lack of quickness was notable. 

In another drill, Legette ran a speed-out, and the ball went right through his hands. He was frustrated, and this wasn't his best performance. There are still two practices left, but Legette was one of Tuesday's biggest disappointments.

Stock Up: Jackson Powers-Johnson, C, Oregon

The Senior Bowl's offensive line talent is as good as it's ever been. Multiple teams could select offensive tackles in the top 20 picks. But the most impressive offensive lineman on Tuesday was Jackson Powers-Johnson from Oregon. 

The 333-pound center stonewalled every defender he saw during practice. His strength and power were noticeable. There is no such thing as a perfect practice, but Powers-Johnson was pretty close during Day 1 of the Senior Bowl.

Powers-Johnson will compete with Graham Barton (Duke) as the first interior offensive lineman off the board.

But the fact that he was so dominant on Tuesday certainly helped his stock. Even after just one practice, it would be a small shock if he fell out of Round 1. He’s just too good.

Stock Down: Kalen King, CB, Penn State

Heading into the 2023 college football season, Kalen King was among the favorites to be the first cornerback selected. He even had an outside chance of being the first defender drafted. But after a rough season, King is no longer expected to be a top-20 pick.

King’s stock continues to fall after a less-than-impressive day on Tuesday. Multiple receivers had success against him in 1-on-1 coverage, and he struggled when asked to play in the slot. In the final drill of the day, Devontez Walker (North Carolina) got a chance to pick a cornerback he wanted to face. Walker chose King. 

Walker decided correctly. 

King did not have a lot of success in press coverage on Tuesday, and his play in off-coverage was even worse.

He needed a strong performance to help rebound his stock, but that did not happen on Day 1. Let’s see if he can find a way to bounce back during Wednesday and Thursday’s practice.

Tags: NFL Draft