NFL Draft Bowl Preview: December 24th

Bahamas Bowl, Dec. 24 — Middle Tennessee State (7-5) vs. Western Michigan, 12 p.m., ESPN

This is the rare game in which potential NFL prospects will go up against each other snap after snap as Western Michigan receivers Corey Davis and Daniel Braverman will likely be seeing a lot of MTSU safety, Kevin Byard.

Davis (6’3”, 205) is the total package at wide receiver that has soft hands, good route running skills and the ability to makes plays after the catch.

He routinely highpoints the football but does have issues with focus and drops at times.  Davis is very quick off the line and rarely has trouble beating the press at the LOS.

Opposite of Davis, Braverman will get a shot in the NFL as well, mainly as a slot receiver. He has soft hands and is strong at the catch point, but he doesn’t have great speed and will struggle to separate at the next level.

For MTSU, Byard is a rising safety prospect. He’s not very big (5’11”, 217) or fast, but he makes up for it by diagnosing plays quickly and reading the quarterbacks eyes very well as a single-high safety.

Byard is a very fluid athlete who has impressive awareness as a defender. He could work his way up to an early Day Two selection by May.

Hawaii Bowl, Dec. 24 — San Diego State (10-3) vs. Cincinnati (7-5), 8 p.m., ESPN

Although San Diego State is a very good team, they don’t have any potential NFL draft picks to watch.

Cincinnati on the other hand has some serious NFL talent to watch, led by wide receiver Chris Moore.

The senior receiver is a serious homerun threat as 41 percent of his targets in 2015 were on passes of 20 yards or longer.

At 6’2”, 190 pounds, Moore is a long, lanky receiver that has serious burners. A big off-season of testing could cause him to rise up the boards in a similar fashion to UAB’s J.J. Nelson last season.

In the trenches, look out for Bearcats offensive tackle, Parker Ehinger.

At 6’7”, 315 pounds, Ehinger is a long, athletic tackle who uses his size and strength to his advantage.

As a long offensive tackle, Ehinger forces rushers to take wider arcs to the quarterback, allowing him to drop further and ride the pass rushers out of the play. Although he’s had a strong year at tackle for the Bearcats, he’s better suited for guard at the next level, which is a position he’s all too familiar with having spent much of his career inside.

Ehinger will play in the East-West Shrine Game and should be able to work his way up to a mid-Day Two draft pick with a strong testing session.

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