Senior Day practices start today down in Mobile, and for two big Auburn linemen, the workout marks an even bigger opportunity to move up draft boards before April.
For once, practice is more important than the game. That’s become the case every year there at college football’s premier all-star game. Workouts leading up to the Senior Bowl are always flooded with NFL scouts, watching closely and keeping notes, doing most of their week’s work in earnest. The actual exhibition game on Saturday is just like a cherry on top.
Auburn defensive lineman Marlon Davidson and offensive lineman Prince Tega Wanogho will both be representing the South team in the North vs. South game set for 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Ladd-Peebles Stadium in Mobile.
The teams are scheduled to practice today, Wednesday and Thursday in the same stadium. Through drills both will have a shot at turning important heads before the NFL Draft in late April. The South team will be guided by the coaches from the Cincinnati Bengals, as assigned by the NFL. The Detroit Lions are coaching the North team.
Auburn’s star defensive tackle Derrick Brown was also invited to the Senior Bowl, but evidently did not accept the invitation. His status as a potential top-10 pick seems pretty well set, pending his testing at the NFL Combine next month.
Davidson and Wanogho have had less first-round buzz around them than Brown has had, but they both will have their chance to impress and bring up their stock this week.
The NFL Combine is set to open Feb. 23 in Indianapolis. The NFL Draft opens April 23 in Paradise, Nev.
Last year, Auburn was represented at the Senior Bowl by Jarrett Stidham, Dontavius Russell and Deshaun Davis.
Davidson and Wanogho aren’t the only Tigers who’ve made it to all-star games this winter. Offensive tackle Jack Driscoll and safety Jeremiah Dinson both represented Auburn in the East-West Shrine Bowl, played Saturday in St. Petersburg, Fla. Cornerback Javaris Davis was also invited but was scratched late due to injury, per NFL.com.
Auburn had six players picked in the NFL Draft last spring, marking the most the school has had since the draft was shortened in 1994.
Davidson was named SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week a staggering four times this past season, starring on the Auburn defense alongside Brown.
Wanogho, who came to America from his native Nigeria as a teen aspiring to play basketball, has been touted by scouts and coaches alike for his athletic ability and upside, especially considering how little he’s been around the game relative to other lifelong players.
Saturday’s Senior Bowl game will be broadcast on NFL Network.