Top Senior QB could be determined this week at Senior Bowl


The battle for the top senior quarterback is a relatively wide open field.  Last year, it was pretty clear that Derek Carr would be the top senior quarterback.  He was ultimately the fourth quarterback selected but he was clearly the best senior of the group and thus far, has shown a great deal of promise as a rookie.  This year, it is not clear which quarterback will be the first senior taken or when they will be selected, but the Senior Bowl could make that picture clearer.

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The top competitors for the job may be Bryce Petty from Baylor and Garrett Grayson from Colorado State.  Both were successful this past season, but they will need to acclimate well this week as both will be dogged by questions about their ages; both will be 24 at the time of the draft.

Auburn’s Nick Marshall should be the most physically impressive looking but will have questions about consistency and accuracy.  Marshall also was arrested before the season for marijuana possession, so he will have an opportunity to address that with teams.  Nevertheless, a good week for Marshall could enable him to make a move in the rankings for quarterbacks in the draft.

The other competitors in this week’s event include Alabama’s Blake Sims, Shane Carden of East Carolina and Oregon State’s Sean Mannion.  All three look to be at the bottom looking up, though Sims is not without his fans.  Certainly the fact he played at Alabama helped him in getting invited, but this week could work to build up his supporters.

The one quarterback that is not here that could potentially have a shot at being the top senior quarterback is Chris Bonner of CSU-Pueblo.  Bonner has a lot of tools that teams will like and showed well in a different All-Star game.  There was some disappointment among scouts when he was not the sixth quarterback invited to the event.

E.J. Manuel had a relatively successful Senior Bowl week followed by an MVP performance in the game itself.  The performance helped catapult him into the first round where he was selected by the Buffalo Bills.  It is unlikely that could happen this year, but stranger things have happened.  In either case, a cloudy quarterback picture could get much clearer after this week on the practice field and in interviews.