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Senior Bowl 2024 | NFL Draft Prospect Game Recap & Betting Tips

Last Updated: Feb 5, 2024

The 2024 Reese’s Senior Bowl took place Saturday, Feb. 3, in Mobile, Ala., as the nation’s top college seniors competed in the 75th annual showcase.

Throughout the week, a number of players saw their draft stock rise and fall based on practices, performances, and measurements. Today, we take a look at some of the 2024 Senior Bowl winners and losers.

Senior Bowl Recap 2024

FINAL SCORE: National Team 16, American Team 7

The Senior Bowl practices are a bigger piece of the evaluation than the game itself. It’s unfair to call it unimportant, but NFL scouts and decision-makers don’t place much stock in the game’s results.

Most teams only care about the measurements, practices, and interviews.

That said, South Carolina’s Spencer Rattler played well, leading the American Team an early 7-0 lead, and was named MVP. Oregon’s Bo Nix also led a touchdown drive for the National Team.

Notre Dame’s Sam Hartman played poorly, only completing 7-of-25 passes for 69 yards, and an interception. Michael Penix Jr. opted just before the game to sit out.

None of the quarterbacks are featured in Michael Rochman’s 2024 NFL Mock Draft, though many believe Nix could hear his name called on Day 1.

2024 Senior Bowl MVP

The Senior Bowl MVP was Rattler. The 23-year-old had a difficult season with many injuries across the Gamecocks’ offensive line.

He looked like the best QB on Day 2 of Senior Bowl practices. Overcoming all the adversity in his collegiate career may serve him well as he hopes to land on an NFL roster later this spring.

NFL Draft Prospect Risers 2024

Jared Wiley, TE, TCU

Every team in this year’s NFL conference championship games had an elite tight end (Travis Kelce, George Kittle, Mark Andrews, Sam LaPorta). I expect the position’s value among NFL decision-makers to continue to tick up more every year.

With that in mind, Jared Wiley can be an every-down player who can excel both as a blocker and pass-catcher. He entered the Senior Bowl with a mid- to late-round grade

A former high school quarterback, a common trait among tight ends, Wiley can do it all athletically and has plus hands. GMs want high football IQ tight ends who can absorb the playbook and Wiley will soar throughout the evaluation process.

Draft Prediction: Round 3

Spencer Rattler, QB, South Carolina

Rattler still has a long way to go and while many are touting his practices, I believe it has more to do with seeing so few positives from the other quarterbacks in attendance.

Hartman, Penix, and Joe Milton III all underwhelmed, leaving Rattler’s good, but not great Senior Bowl week to get more shine than it probably deserved. Even so, standing out above his peers still counts for something and will likely help his draft stock regardless.

Draft Prediction: Round 4

Ladd McConkey, WR, Georgia

At just 5-foot-11 and 187 pounds, Ladd McConkey outperforms his undersized frame. He came out of the gates practicing at a high level at the Senior Bowl.

A likely slot receiver, McConkey has elite footwork, is as shifty as they come after the catch, and possesses excellent hands. He did not play much his senior year due to injuries, but there’s no denying what he’s put on tape.

Draft Prediction: Early Round 2

Honorable Mentions:

  • Quinyon Mitchell, CB, Toledo
  • Cam Hart, CB, Notre Dame
  • Jackson Powers-Johnson, C/G, Oregon
  • Michael Penix Jr., QB, Washington
  • Christian Haynes, G, UConn
  • Roman Wilson, WR, Michigan

NFL Draft Prospect Fallers 2024

Tez Walker, WR, North Carolina

This is a strong year for wide receiver prospects, and I believe it’s possible we see as many as 20 could be selected in the draft’s first three rounds. Fourteen WRs were taken in the first 100 picks in 2023, and 17 WRs were drafted in the first three rounds in 2022.

One receiver who may have hurt his chances to hear his name called in Day 2 of the NFL Draft was Walker. He showed some inconsistency with his hands during practice, the game, and throughout the 2023 season.

Overall, Walker has an incomplete style of play and most of his production came from deep passes. I need to see more work in the short and intermediate game as NFL defenses have moved to take away the long ball.

Sam Hartman, QB, Notre Dame

Not only did Sam Hartman struggle mightily in the game, but he didn’t show much during practices either compared to his peers. Hartman doesn’t have the arm talent many teams are looking for in today’s NFL.

He looked to be forcing the ball at times and his “tappy feet" footwork leaves him off-balance when he eventually delivers his passes.

Draft Prediction: Round 7

Xavier Legette, WR, South Carolina

I saw few positives from Legette in his 1-on-1s. This is an exceptional WR class and while not everyone can be an all-around excellent prospect, players typically have one or two great traits that make them stand out.

Legette didn’t show me anything other than mediocrity. His senior year’s game tape looked better, so I’m not sure what wasn’t clicking for him at the Senior Bowl

More Fallers:

  • Kalen King, CB, Penn State
  • Joe Milton III, QB, Tennessee
  • D.J. James, CB, Auburn
  • Kingsley Suamataia, OT, BYU

Why Senior Bowl Matters for NFL Draft

While the game itself is less important, the Senior Bowl and the practices leading up to it still matter for several different reasons.

The first is that this is the last chance that college players have to perform (in pads) in a real football setting. They get to show off their talent against the best players in the country to all 32 NFL teams.

Another big reason why this week matters so much for NFL evaluators is that this is the first time they get verified measurements of college prospects. For some teams, that can be important as they have clear and strong thresholds when it comes to certain positions. Getting accurate measurements is the first step in building a player’s final draft grade.

The Senior Bowl benefits players from small schools, as well. Those practice snaps can help illustrate how large the jump from small-school college to the NFL might be for a prospect.

Author

Matt De Lima

Matt is a sports content editor at The Game Day with more than 10 years experience in the fantasy and betting spaces. He is a two-time Fantasy Sports Writing Association award finalist with previous experience working for Sports Illustrated, Full Time Fantasy, FFToolbox, 4for4, and RotoExperts. Born and raised in California, Matt now calls southern Maryland home. He is a Virginia Tech alumnus and a life-long 49ers, Lakers, and Dodgers fan.

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