Don’t Fade the Senior Bowl

Senior Bowl

Draft season is underway! And as Executive Director of the Reese’s Senior Bowl Jim Nagy quips, #TheDraftStartsInMOBILE. I have had the good fortune of attending the Reese’s Senior Bowl every year since 2016. Unfortunately, amid the pandemic, I won’t have the opportunity to attend the game in-person this year. However, 2021 marks the second year that I will have the privilege of attending the vital three days of practices as a member of the media. The medical evaluations, team/player interviews, practices and to a lesser extent Senior Bowl Game Day can go a long way towards bolstering the draft stock of an NFL prospect. There is no debate.

But what of fantasy football/dynasty implications? Of course when you consider Breakout Age and Dominator Rating the Senior Bowl doesn’t exactly invoke excitement or confidence. But, in my experience, this final NCAAF showcase has unearthed more than its fair share of gems in Fantasy & Reality.

2016 Reese’s Senior Bowl

The 2016 edition of the Senior Bowl wasn’t littered with eventual fantasy football/dynasty standouts but there were a pair of quarterbacks that certainly made waves in both the Fantasy & Reality (football) communities. The headliner was FCS quarterback Carson Wentz; however, it was Dak Prescott that impressed most during the game. Kenyan Drake also made a case for himself in Mobile following an injury-plauged career at Alabama.

YearDak Prescott
Fantasy Ranking
Carson Wentz
Fantasy Ranking
2016QB6QB24
2017QB10QB4
2018QB15QB21
2019QB3QB10
2020QB30QB21
*Prescott only played 5 games in 2020 (injury); Wentz only played 11 games in 2018 and was benched in 2020 (12 games).

2017 Reese’s Senior Bowl

Droves of “skill” position talent still had not descended upon Mobile but a talented running back from Toledo parlayed a standout Senior Bowl performance (and a decorated collegiate career) into fantasy football/dynasty stardom. Including three Top 11 (PPR) finishes and a rushing title in four seasons. Kareem Hunt effectively soldified his place among the historically deep running back class of 2017 after taking home “Player of the Game” honors. A pair of ballyhooed tight ends, Evan Engram and O.J. Howard, were among 2017 participants as well. Neither player has lived up to expectations; but it should be noted that Engram finished as TE4 Overall in 2017 and at 26-years-old still offers some upside at the veritable fantasy wasteland position. And then of course there was little known Cooper Kupp of Eastern Washington who has finished as a WR1 or WR2 in three of four seasons.

Senior Bowl

2018 Reese’s Senior Bowl

The 2018 crop of participants included: Baker Mayfield, Josh Allen (2x Top 6 finishes; 2019, 2020), Michael Gallup (Top 30 WR in 2019), DJ Chark (WR16 overall in 2019), and Mike Gesicki (2x Top 12 finishes; 2019, 2020). And fringe fantasy assets such as: Kalen Ballage, Tre’Quan Smith and Allen Lazard.

2019/2020 Reese’s Senior Bowl

Enter Jim Nagy and things start to get really interesting! The Executive Director of the Senior Bowl began implementing new programs; including establishing a scouting department not unlike what the 32 NFL Franchises employ. One of the byproducts was an influx in Fantasy Football/Dynasty relevant participants.

  • Daniel Jones (2019)
  • Gardner Minshew (2019)
  • Justin Herbert (2020)
  • Jalen Hurts (2020)
  • Tony Pollard (2019)
  • Antonio Gibson (2020)
  • Terry McLaurin (2019)
  • Deebo Samuel (2019)
  • Chase Claypool (2019)

Just to name several. What’s more Brandon Aiyuk and Zack Moss were slated to play in 2020 but were held out due to injury. Fast forward to 2021 and the rosters are loaded with potential fantasy football/dynasty relevant players. The shrewd fantasy football enthusiast won’t fade the Senior Bowl.

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Author: CPGM Juice